the nikku

reflecting on ESL/EFL and its relation to faith

Friday, June 22, 2012

A stressful day at work

So, this morning at work was more stressful than I was expecting.  You would think that junior high students would be the most stressful part of the job, but in my experiences here so far, it's usually got more to do with the adminstration.

Today, after the typhoon on Wednesday, there was a storm warning announced on TV at 7:45am.  Evidently, we have a policy that when there's a storm warning issued we'll have a two hour late start.  The problem was, it was totally sunny (and remained so all day, seems the weather report was wrong), and when I got off the train at 7:30, there were already about 60 students who had gotten off. 

So teachers were not allowed to teach during the first two hours of the day because not all students had arrived, but we had to supervise the students in homerooms who had already come to school.  In the classroom I supervised, 30 out of 40 had come to school on time.  It was great time for the students have a two-hour study hall, but I have to admit that it seemed like a needless waste of time.  I wished this policy was a little more flexible, and I wondered who ever came up with it in the first place.

On top of that, my co-worker and I are co-writing the final listening tests this week to be proofread by next week, and recorded and ready for students in two weeks.  It's my first time doing this at this school, so I'm fairly unsure of the format.  My co-worker told me that we should make five sections of five questions each for a total of 25 questions at two points each which will give us a total of 50 points which is the weight of this test on their final grade.  So I wrote my half with 5 questions per section.  When I got her half to combine with mine she said that she didn't want to correct that many questions, so she had only written 3 questions per section.

I'm not quick with math any more, so I told her I'd try and make it work with the point total.  As it turns out, there's no total of 3 parts 5 questions and two parts three questions that equals 50 points.  I even tried deleting some of my questions and it didn't work.  Basically the only way to do it is 10 questions worth five points, or 25 questions worth 2 points.  I told her this and asked if we could change her half of the test.  She said yeah, I could write more questions for HER half of the test.  So basically she left more work for me to do - knowingly or negligently I don't know. 

And to top it off, it looks like she didn't proofread it before she gave it to me.  I found about five semi-major mistakes - just the kind of stuff you do when you're writing fast.  This didn't take that long to fix actually, maybe 30 minutes, but it was frustrating none the less. 

Every day takes grace and strength from outside myself.  It kind of takes you by surprise sometimes.

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