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29 April 2009 @ 10:14 pm
So tired...  
So, my new job is interesting.

First of all, it's a 45 minute bus ride from Chiyoda to Hiroshima (I take the 6:19 a.m. bus). Then, once I get there, I have to wait 10 minutes for the appropriate streetcar to arrive. Once that comes, I take that and arrive at Suzugamine at 7:50, and have to wait until 8:20 for work to actually begin. I can't take the next bus (the 6:43 one) because if it's even a single minute late, I miss the next streetcar and then miss the morning teacher's meeting, which is very, very bad.

Originally, I was told that it was all going to be team teaching with a Japanese English Teacher, much the same way that softlykarou's job is. When I went in for the explanatory meeting, I was told that it would be mostly middle school students with some high school (a direct quote), and team teaching except for one test-prep class which I would be teaching myself. Okay, I thought, not a problem. Then on the first day when I went in to work, it turned out that I was actually going to be teaching 12 out of 15 classes by myself. All 12 of those classes are high schoolers.

So, yeah, the job description was a total pack of lies. Some people here may be thinking, "But Dorchadas, you teach at an all-girls high school in Japan! You're living the otaku[1] dream!" Yes, I am surrounded every day by dozens of Japanese schoolgirls. But I'm far more worried about having to plan all the lessons myself. It's especially ironic because Tetsui-san at Lang said I should come here because I didn't have much teaching experience and working with a Japanese English Teacher would help me learn them. Ha. Fat chance. So far, it's worked out okay because I've been able to look over the lesson plans of the guy who taught here before I did for inspiration. We'll see how well it goes in a month or so.

The girls...vary. Some of them are quite studious and willing to work hard and try to understand (the students in the aforementioned test-prep class). Some of them couldn't give a damn about English and use English Conversation class as an excuse to catch up on whose boyfriend is sleeping with whom now. One student introduced herself to me as Hamasaki Ayumii; much to my annoyance, her plan actually had some moderate success because it got me to remember her real name. My job is to make them care about English. Well...easier said than done, true. Some of them will never care. Some of them don't need me to help them care. It's the group in the middle that I have to reach out to.

It is a matter of great universal cruelty that during the time when it's easiest to learn a new language (until age 11-13 or so), you don't give a damn about doing it. You only really care when you're much older and it gets a lot harder.

Anyway, it's bed time. I have to get up at 5:20 a.m. again.

[1]: Do not actually use otaku to a Japanese person. Unlike in America, where it means, "an anime fan," the original meaning is closer to "unhealthily obsessed fanatic." It can also be a polite way to refer to someone else's house, as in "otaku e maitte mo yoroshii de gozaimasu ka?" which is something like, "Would it possibly be okay for me to please come to your house?" Note that no one under thirty actually talks like that ever.
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