This Probably Isn’t Good

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Just fyi, I wasn't planning to actually post this entry because it's so mean. But at the same time, I do want to vent my frustrations. As of right now, I haven't been back to Odochi but things overall have gotten better for me. The more that time passes, the better things get and this was at one of my peaks of anger. I can't say that I don't feel this way anymore but at least now I'm not so angry ;)

So just be warned, this is a mean post. It wasn't written to be nice either.

I am not having a good week. It seems to keep going down hill. I know this is culture shock but…..I don’t know if I can handle this.

Yesterday was quite hectic. All of the teachers are getting ready for midterms of sorts that are happening next week. In fact, one teacher got so caught up in his reviewing that he forgot that I was supposed to teach with him. He left without coming to get me and when I walked to his class he had already started and had a tape player which means he didn’t need me to read the dialogue. I thought it was all for the better. It’s probably the last class that the students are going to have before their midterms and since no one tells me what’s not the test NOR AM I A QUALIFIED TEACHER they would probably be better off with his lesson.

I went back to my desk to work on another lesson and the teacher came in later and apologized (freaked out) because he had forgotten me. It was really truly ok. I didn’t want to do my lesson anyway.

And on that note, what the hell!?! I talk to so many other ALTs who tell me how bored they are because they don’t write their own lessons and they don’t do anything except sit at their desk. I don’t want to be bored but why the hell are they relying on me so much!?! The lesson I write is for the entire class. There is close to no real teacher input. If I want to play a game, we play a game. If I don’t know what we are doing, no one knows what we are doing. It’s totally BULLSHIT!

By the end of the day I was stressing. I really don’t like this job at all. Not only do I not enjoy the work but no one really talks to me either. If they do, they start sounding really nervous, ok? Ok? Is that ok? Alright? Sure? Hai! Yes! No one over there relaxes and it’s stressing me out.

I went up to one of my teachers and told her that I didn’t have time to write a lesson for her class and I didn’t want to tell her right before the class that I was going to play a game when the students really need to work for the review. She looked at me and said “I don’t have any ideas, what lesson do you want to write?”

No no, Nina can’t write jack shit. I’m telling you now, please god, I can’t do this.

She convinced me to write part of it which I did at Oodochi today.

I was looking forward to going to Oodochi today. I really like the laid back atmosphere there. It’s a nice break. I don’t know if I want to be there everyday but a lot of things are much better there.

First, I can talk to the teachers. People smile when they see me and no one worries about…anything. Next, I have time to just think about what I want to write and enjoy actually working on a creative lesson. I can also work on my Japanese!

However, the students are another thing.

Personally, I like the students as people. When I see them in the hall or outside of the school, they are good people….for the most part. I like pretty much most of them. However, I am starting to think that they are retarded. I don’t mean that in a nice way in the least.

Sometimes they are so damn stupid it baffles me!

Today, I decided to play Halloween Bingo. I gave them a blank Bingo sheet that was 5x5 and a free space in the middle. I then put Halloween words on the board and had them fill in the blanks. It took them almost 20 minutes to do this. One of my teachers told me later that there were too many blanks on the board. I needed to make out the cards before hand….alright, do I need to spoon feed these kids too? I already give them the answers to every damn assignment I make, and those are ridiculously easy!!!

The reason it took them 20 minutes: they couldn’t tell what words they had already written down. They would randomly pick a word on the board and randomly place it on the card. Uh huh, instead, they should have gone down the line of words on the board and placed them randomly on their card. It’s not rocket science kids! I can’t help but get frustrated. This sort of thing happens all the damn time at least when the kids aren’t snoring, passing notes, talking, or generally being the rudest bastards I have ever seen in my life.

I seriously contemplated leaving JET and working with a different company. At least with ANY OTHER COMPANY I would be in a bigger city and with students who actually wanted to be there.

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