Those days.

A lot of this blog has highlighted all of the really great, happy, and amazing stuff I have been experiencing this past year. Very little of it has been devoted to those days. You know, those days where the second you step onto the street you know you would be better off just staying inside, laying in bed and watching something on Netflix while binging on a guilty pleasure food.

Today was one of those days.

I had the morning to bum around my apartment and made some homemade pita chips. Good start.

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Got to Portuguese class at 1:23. Class “starts” at “1:30.” Professor showed up at 1:47. We were supposed to be starting a movie today but she told us that all of the projectors at my university were already checked out by the time she went to reserve one. So we read an article in Portuguese about birdwatching in Brazil and Argentina. We learned a lot of new bird names in Portuguese. Which were explained in Spanish. I found out today that I know basically no bird words in Spanish, because the entire time I just stared at the board and didn’t recognize anything on it.

Left class and got on bus #1 of 2 to get to my English teaching job at a private school. Spaced out and got off one stop too late, so I had to walk an extra 3 blocks to get to the next stop (6 total). Made it to the next stop, and the first bus passed totally full. The second one came.

Got on it and then got off it, and walked 6 blocks to the school. 3:53 PM, class starts at 4:15. As soon as I got inside I realized that I left my English notebook at home so I had none of my graded work, no attendance sheet, no grade sheet, etc. with me. I am subbing for another teacher this week so I am teaching 2 different classes at the same time. Which really means 3 classes, because within my class I am already teaching two different levels. But in my class, half the students were absent on Tuesday. So I was really teaching four classes at the same time. After getting them split up into separate rooms, on-task, timers set for their various practice tests and writing assignments, two of my students told me they forgot the articles we had done on Tuesday at home. I had no more extras and the photocopier at the school was already closed for the day.

Finally the long 1.5 hours of teaching 4 classes at once was over. I spaced out and turned the corner instead of walking straight and so I decided to try taking a different bus home to save me more walking. I got on it and realized I had no idea what the route was like on this particular bus. So I just went with it until I saw Café Martínez, where I decided to stop and grade for a little. 6 PM. I sat down outside at one of the tables, and within 15 minutes a cold front rolled in and it got chillier out. It took a total of 37 minutes for me to get my drink. They didn’t have what I wanted (a cold frappuchino thing) so I went with a smoothie. 37 minutes.

The grading was horrendous. I realized that one of my students really should not be in my class, she should be in the previous level because her listening comprehension and writing are not at the level of my other students (this is an extra class after school and the parents pay for their students to get more individualized attention to prepare to take the Cambridge FCE (other teacher), CAE, and CPE (me) exams. So no judging about how I have to differentiate more or whatever). I emailed my boss a long, detailed email expressing my concerns about this student (I started in September so I don’t really know them that well yet because I only see them 2x a week), trying to be proactive and responsible.

I decided to go home after awhile because I was so cold and couldn’t concentrate anymore. 7:30 PM. I finally got home and realized I had to look over powerpoints for my master’s class tomorrow because we have to write something about what was in the powerpoints. I started eating the pita chips I made this morning. I opened the document.

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93 slides that all look like this. Look at the lefthand side there, you can see that all the slides have that much text. This not only hurts my eyes, but COME ON! Just write an essay. Or at least bulletpoint an outline or something. What’s the purpose of a PowerPoint if it looks like this? About 20 minutes later I had eaten all the pita chips I made this morning. Bye, pita chips.

I gave up on reading the slides and decided it wasn’t worth it. I put on dress pants fixed my hair and left for the Rotary meeting. 9:00 PM. The old restaurant where we used to meet is changing ownership so it’s closed while they’re remodeling it. I used to be able to walk to the meeting in 14 minutes. The new location is about 20 minutes away by bus. I was nearing my stop when my phone buzzed. I hit the end call button just so the screen would light up. It was a call from the club president. He left a message.

I got up so I could head to the bus door and hit the button so the driver would stop at the next stop. As soon as I did this I heard in the voicemail, “I hope you’re not already at the restaurant, we’re not having a meeting this week because most people are out of town.” 9:23 PM. Meeting was supposed to start at 9:30. The bus driver stopped the bus. I just awkwardly shook my head at him, swore out loud at my cell phone, and sat back down.

Rode the bus all the way back around to my apartment. Got home at 9:50 PM. Looked down and saw an e-mail from my boss at the school. Her response about the concern about my student. (This is in English). “She is going to take the FCE exam (the level below the class I teach), she is preparing CAE but is going to take FCE. The class teacher will help you practice and from now on you can give her mock tests of FCE with answer sheets. She will have to practice both at school and at home.” What? Who is “the class teacher”? I’m teaching for a maternity leave here but she is totally uninvolved in the class. What? Why is this girl in my class preparing for an exam above her level if she’s taking FCE? The format is different, and the writing calls for totally different things.

I’m in my bed with a bunch of Oreo cookies and a container of dulce de leche. I’m going to find some crappy movie on Netflix and fall asleep. Because this day needs to be over.

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