This was a post from Friday is about events that happened little more than a week ago. I have not been re-illusioned, but over the weekend I have had time away from school and a chance to sit down and think about how I am going to handle the situation.
First think I came to terms with was my co-teacher. She is normally very helpful, so I was never all that angry with her. I was upset with her, but not angry. Apart from not helping me with my request to keep students of my back with their stupid Lancourt Rocks crap (Koreans call it an island, Dokdo), she did not go against me in any other way that I know of. The Lancourt crap however, leads to other things that were expressed in extremely rude ways by the students. That was what upset me the most. Since I walked out of that class, I have had almost no students randomly come in to my class to do nothing but make noise, and I have had no one write rubbish on the boards either.. Since EVERYTHING in Korea is politics, the office being the worse of them, I know that often she is just doing the best not just for her, but sometimes for me as well and that is why she tried to sweep the Lancourt thing under the rug.
I also realised that I can’t make myself not care at all, just like you can’t make people who don’t care at all care more than a little bit. I am, however, sticking to my policy of, if you do don’t try then I don’t care, but I will create my lessons as if everyone wants to be there. When I give the lessons, I will just observe and take the time from the bad apple and give it to the good peaches. That way the situation will turn out just peachy! (Ho-ho. Otto play word games. Otto Funny… Otto stop now.)
The third thing I realised was that there are people out there who read my blog. I started it, like most people seem to, as my letters home. For the most part it is still just that. There are people with more knowledge and better writing skills than mine to do the heavy stuff. I write it in English because I have friends who don’t speak Afrikaans. I write what I want and my friends and family know me for that. Before this week I thought I had about 10 people reading my blog, but it turns out it is more like 20 (ignoring random hits through search engines)
The last this I realised was that there are people out there who have gone thought this already and want to help, even though I they don’t know me at all. I received responses from people I have never heard of before, both on the blog and via email. I was given helpful advice and a book was recommended to me, with reasons why it might help my teaching. I am going to give it a try and see how it goes. My mission for the next month is to read that book, try a few lessons using the technique and see how it goes.
Something good that has come from this is that I am more relaxed in class. I don’t feel any pressure to teach the bad apples and it makes me happy to see the good ones participate. I leave class feeling that I am doing some good again.