Stop right now, thank you very much

Standard

…I need someone with sympathetic touch.

As I have mentioned in the previous posts,this year has started off poorly.

I know life is what you make of it.

But when you have a co teacher that keeps information from you, students whose English levels are below where they should be because they didn’t have to use it at all the previous year (read : i was told they were required to speak it thus creating the problem that none of my students want to speak) , sharing an office with a teacher who wears multiple layers of clothes than opens the windows (which is right next to me) when the temperature is 40 degrees …..in direct sunlight…..

….you start to become a little bitter and a little annoyed.

One thing I’ve learned is that public schools here are nothing like standard public schools back home. Books, days off, vacations-all of this is subject to each school.

This can cause problems when trying to give other teachers advice. For instance-my school very much likes me to follow the book while other schools don’t really care. My school is an 80 min class once a week-most schools are 40 mins twice a week.

So this can become difficult when I am trying to explain to a friend that I can’t just deviate from the book . Yes I have games and activities but that is not going to take up an entire class period-I still need to teach the lesson and I still will have another 40 min.

Also-trouble arises when your previous class is at a different level than your others. You have to adjust the activities. It doesn’t help when your co teacher who is supposed to be supporting you, reinforcing discipline,  translating things, simply looks at the students, asks them in Korean if they understand what I said (which even I could do) and then looks at me to move on.

Sometimes I wonder if she is part of the reason last years 4th graders are so much slower.

Oh, and she completely forgot to tell me we didn’t have class this morning. it wasn’t until my other co asked me where I was going and was shocked that the new co didn’t tell me that class was cancelled. Thank god for my other co.

So many things have changed in a year. Last year, I was terrified of co 1 (the one still working with me) and thought she was too hard on the kids. Now , I’ve grown to understand and respect her as well as act normally around her. I think we have similar peronalities which is what made it seem like she was a cold person at first. (hint we are both scorpios). Co 2 -between changing from a sub initially, to Young Jun who I became very close to, to Eun Na who was like a big sister despite her never having to teach children before, back to Young Jun for a week and then finally this new co teacher who just isn’t working well.

My classroom is completely different and I hate my new one-it’s old and smalland I have to bring all my supplies with me up to the 4th floor.

The students…see above.

 

Overall I know “sophmore year” you experinces a slump-whether that be school, work or even baseball. I guess this is my “sophmore” slump.  And I’ll have to do my best to get through it. But that doesn’t mean I can’t bitch about it every once in a while.

 

It’s Friday! Friday! Gotta get down on Friday!

Today’s topic is….TV and movies right? I actually don’t remember that well. Sue me.

Anyway are just going to roll with that.

Since the last movie I saw in general and in theaters was D.O.’s “Pure Love”, I guess that’s what I should talk about.

It actually was interesting…because I only understood about 1/10 words and had to guess what was happening when there was just dialouge.

The story was a lot different than I thought it was going to be. It was marketed as you never forget your first love. But the movie held a more “friendship” feel. While yes there was a small love story, it was ultimately about friendship which I think is a better story anyway. It was sad at times, funny and set against a backdrop of the 90’s. “Take on Me” played as well as “Dust in the Wind” and while yes I technically a late 90’s early 2000’s kid, I still remember these songs and the carefree feeling of the 90’s espeically the summertime.

While everyone said it was bad, and hasn’t performed as well as it should have based on the hype, I thought it was good though I would have liked to understand what exactly was going on-some things I just wasn’t quite sure about.

 

Next would be TV Shows: Hm well I guess we should start with the last TV show I watched. Its one of my favorite shows of all time, top 3 easily. And yes it’s a children’s show- 100% animated.

While some of you might know that monstrosity that was lableled as “the last airbender”, Avatar: The Last Airbender is a show that every single person should watch.

I could drone on and on about it….and I will….just kidding. I will just give it’s top 8 (because it’s my favorite number) reasons why you need to watch this even if you are a 56 year old white dude.

 

1 It’s only 3 seasons long. it’s something you can get through pretty quickly. Each season has…20 episodes?  at a little under 30 min a piece. It also is so cohesive I can’t imagine it not being written as the show progresses, rather the writers knowing where they were going.

2 The characters. While there are 4 “main” characters there are a lot of supporting characters that are pretty well developed as well. And the main characters are anything from flat or stereotypical. Like the “villian” in season 1 is Zuko….he probably has the most impressive character arc out of anyone.

These characters are also relateable. Suppose you’re someone who has to be in the man in their familes because their parents are unable to take care of them-Sokka. Or you constantly have to live with what you did in the past and it’s consequences and do your best to make up for it in the present-Iroh. Or if you are kind of crazy, a good liar, who has a fondness for throwing rocks at turtle ducks because you inherited some of your father’s sociopathetic ways-fear not, even you have Azula.

Everyone can find traits they relate to which is important when you are investing yourself in a show.

3 Asian-yes this is going to sound horrible but the fact that most of the charcters and settings are based on Asian culture was a hidden selling point for me. There aren’t that many chances for Asian culture to have on US TV that’s not horribly stereotypical. And though yes they do speak in English and have different colored eyes, you’d have to be pretty dumb not to think of it as an Asian world. And it’s not just China or Japan or Korea-it’s a mixture that’s not offensive. It’s not saying that all these Asian cultures are the same so we are just going to pretend that it’s all Chinese-the writers admit to have taken parts from each culture -in a way it represents Asia as a whole in rare way. (sidenote yes in season 3 there are the obvious sun warriors who seem to be that of native central American decent)

4 alternating story lines-there are two major storyarcs that occur throughout the entire show. this not only sets up for an interesting and fresh story that doesn’t turn bland with the same characters, but also you get to see two foil characters proceed to what they believe is their destiny.

 

5 the awesome effects-yeah who wouldn’t want to be able to control or “bend” natural elements. enough said

 

6 topics/characters-yes this is a little different than content and characters-I’m specifically looking at the character of toph. she is a blind earth bender who joins the show in season 2. the show allows her to be treated just like everyone else-sometimes to a fault because the others simply forget she’s blind. But her bending allows her to see with her “feet” kind of like a ground penetrating radar . I think this is important because unlike other shows that might make this a learning point for children on how to “deal” with the blind, this show instead does nothing like that. It shows how well Toph can function and be just like everyone else.

 

7 humor-yes this is a children’s show. however that doesn’t mean there isn’t any humor. and most of the time is the show poking fun at itself. the most memorable episode is when the characters go to a “play” about themselves in season 3-it was made as a nice recap before the final 4 part series finale. between making Aang being played by a girl like in peter pan, even poking fun at what were considered boring or long episodes (audience members were falling asleep in the theater)  it was still hysterical. nothing’s better than a show who knows how to make fun of itself

 

8 real meaning-this show taught a generation of kids to not see differences as a negative thing. it taught them that bad things can happen when an evil man with an agenda and ego can get into power (cough trump). It also teaches about redemption, even when you don’t think there is any hope for you left.

So it’s not just about some kids, but lessons that even the modern world sorely needs.

 

So the next post will be on Monday! By that time the USA will be starting Daylight’s savings time. And I remember how much I hated it…luckily I don’t have to deal with that.

 

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