Sunday, September 09, 2007

Yes, I am still alive

Is there such a thing as an allergy to vacations? My much anticipated vacation (one whole week!) ended up being spent in bed with some flu-esque thing. Lots of headaches, some fever off and on, and a little vomiting, just for fun.

I realized that that is the third vacation in a row that I've felt like crap. At Christmas, I got some kind of bug on the plane (presumably) and spent a few rough days hanging out at my Dad's, then coughed my way through Disney World. The cough cleared up on the trip home. Literally. Before that, last Chuseok, I had to go to the emergency room, because I couldn't swallow and no other doctor's offices were open.

So, as a result of not being up to anything more than leaning up in bed, I didn't get much done. I did get the fist five Harry Potter books read, though. Now, I'm scrambling a bit to get ready for my workshop next weekend. I would link it, but it has mysteriously disappeared from the KOTESOL website. Hmmmm.... I could look into why, but I probably won't. It's about materials you can make for classroom activities with young learners.

I'm starting to get nervous. I'm not much of a public speaker, but I was requested to do it. So, today I've got to finish up my handouts and some of the materials I'll need. I won't have time this week, because our new teachers are showing up starting tomorrow. The new semester started last week, but immigration law suddenly changed so they couldn't get here on time. So, I'll be training them before and after class (which they'll be teaching).

I tried to convince the school that having subs for one extra day wouldn't hurt anything and would make happier teachers, but I don't think they listened. To their minds, not working the day they arrive is enough time to rest. So, the teachers are going to be jet-lagged and just tired from being on planes for 20-ish hours and they'll get one night of sleep before being thrown into their classes. Needless to say, they have no teaching experience. Should be interesting (read: tiring, for them and me).

I don't know why schools don't see what these little things do for teacher morale. Sending inexperienced, jet-lagged teachers straight into class is not the way to start off on the right foot. Some schools take teachers straight from the airport to class. Then they wonder why the teachers are such sticklers about following the letter of their contracts. ("Sorry, my working hours are x to y, if you want to have a meeting, it has to be then.")

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