Along with working here comes a weird competition within the faculty as well. In a way, our headmaster is like the dad, and people are always trying to seek dad's approval. It is frustrating at times because I don't always advocate well for myself; I am not that competitive when it comes to my performance as an employee. I have always waited for the person in charge to recognize on his or her own if I am doing a good job or if I need to improve my efforts. As a result, the equity of the work often sucks and some of my colleagues get away with doing minimal work because they will boast about how hard they work, and the opposite is often true, while I feel like I am killing myself. Also, people can sometimes step on you and take credit for something that you had a hand in making successful in order to get ahead, but this is a false sense of "getting ahead" because there is no monetary reward, just dad's approval.
There are certain things that are expected tasks that are way beyond what I did as a public school teacher. Here, you have to not only give the student a grade at the quarter, semester, and end of the year, but four times a year, you have to write a grade comment, which is about three paragraphs per kid explaining what we did that quarter in class, and describing that kid's strengths and weaknesses, and a basic justification of the grade.
One of the things that I am doing right now is another daunting task. Our school has 2 days of parent/teacher conferences where the kids get two days off and I meet with parents for 15 minutes at a time. Yesterday, it was 11:00-7:30, today it is 9:00-4:30. I get a lunch break both days, but it is pretty non-stop for that time, and I am dragging my ass with no voice left by the end. The kids come back all rejuvenated and spazzy because they got a 4-day weekend, but the teachers are all aggravated and pissy.
Nevertheless, I am happy to work here. There is a sense of freedom to teach what I want because I am not beholden to state standards. My class sizes are small (no more than 24) and the kids are very nice and respectful for the most part. The campus is beautiful and my fiance and I have on-campus housing (a 3-bedroom for $850 a month), and I really like living on Maui. I am treated well, I get a paycheck and health insurance, I feel like I am making a difference in the lives of kids, I feel appreciated by the families I teach, and it united me with my future wife!
- In other news, I have been playing through Plants vs. Zombies 2 for a few weeks now. Fun! It is a different format than the original PvZ in that it is more like Angry Birds with earning stars per level, but I really enjoy it! The other thing about it is that it is free(!) but you can buy certain plants in order to make the game manageable, but it is not necessary to be successful in the game.
- I don't know if any of you have been following Breaking Bad, but these last few episodes have been gut-wrenching, not just because of the sad anticipation for the end of the series, but the storyline has been so brutal. Still, one of the best shows that I have ever seen.
- The other show we really like is Bob's Burgers. If you are so inclined, check it out on Netflix and/or Hulu. It is an animated show on Fox that's actually good, which all but guarantees it will get prematurely cancelled, but Wendy Molynuex and her sister Lizzie are writers. I saw recently that they got a deal to produce and develop new shows, so it seems like they are doing something right. Costa alumni making good! Here is the article. <
Anyway, I have to go, my next appointment is here.