Drink of the week: One Cup

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

So, as my tastes seem to be continually changing, my drink of the week is cheap warm sake! Mmmmmm It’s called one cup and it comes in a glass cup of about 100-200-270mls. The 100 ml is only 100yen so I’m all for that. Since I don’t have a microwave and since it comes in a glass cup, I stick it in a pot of boiling water and wait about 5 minutes. Very nice. Great for relaxing from a stressful day in Japan.

Today, I stayed after school wracking my brain trying to come up with a lesson plan for my integrated class. It’s so easy doing the introduction lesson because it’s the same for every class regardless of what level they are! I just change how I talk.

But my next lesson is going to be video taped so there’s no trial and error with that group. I gotta make it look good!

Also, I keep coming across lessons that would be perfect for upper level students. I am going to have a field day with that one. But everyone else happens to be super lower level so that makes things difficult. They aren’t children so I can’t use children’s games but at the same time they can’t speak or listen or write or read for a damn so that means I can’t do anything that’s really all that interesting. (I hope to prove myself wrong on this one)

For my 1st year students I actually have a book to work with. So I have a curriculum to follow and some nice vocabulary and grammar structures to reinforce. On top of that, I found my predecessors old lesson plans, which makes my life way easier!

On the other hand, for every other class that isn’t 1st year, I need to come up with entirely new lessons and I just don’t know what I’m doing! I want to follow the teacher before me and she was not about playing a lot of games. I can understand why. The games are nice but they’re a bit useless. They don’t really do much good unless they have an actual base to stand on.

For example:

It would be nice if the teacher would teach certain grammar and vocabulary and I would come in the next day and play some games that help reinforce those structures. Or, I could also actually teach them the vocabulary with some nice vocabulary games!

But that would be too logical. (not easy, just logical) Instead, at least for everyone other than the 1st years, they just give me free reign. I don’t have any curriculum to follow, no vocab, and no idea what they already do and don’t know! So I have to feel my way out trying to understand what I can and can’t do. I just have no direction. I’m working completely blind. And the maybes from the teachers don’t help a whole lot.

I’ve never spoken to a single person so much without actually getting a solid answer! Yes, I was expecting this because I’ve studied Japanese culture. But it’s one thing to read it in a book and it’s another to experience it every day!

Damn I wish someone would just be straight forward with me for once!

Oh…someone was today…and it didn’t make me happy.

A teacher told me today that he didn’t like my paper airplane lesson. It seemed to have worked decently with every other class, but he seemed to think it wasn’t very good. I decided I didn’t like him very much…for now.

Maybe if I didn’t care about my job things would be easier. Story of my life. I remember working at marble slab and thinking the same thing. If I didn’t have work ethic, this job would be cake! Well, working as an ALT is the same thing. I could just play games with the students and not really have them learn anything and I could do a half ass job and I wouldn’t get fired or even reprimanded! But I just can’t do that. Damn work ethic! This job is going to be the death of me if I don’t figure it out sometime real soon!

It rained all day today and now it’s about 72 degrees Fahrenheit. It’s kinda cool. In fact, I was too cold in the teachers room today! Every window was open and the breeze was blowing right through my skirt! I wanted to scream for someone to close a window but I kept telling myself that this was going to just get worse. One day I’ll think this is hot! In fact, the teacher that I don’t really like commented that he thought it was hot! ….yeah, I still don’t like him.

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