Sunday, May 29, 2011
Update # 3
One thing that I have learned since I've been back in Regina is that I really do LOVE teaching. Being in the classroom with a group full of students is a cure for any ailment. I've walked into the classroom in the most sour of moods and left on cloud # 9. I don't know what it is about it, but it works for me! I love what I do.
Of course there are other things that I don't find particularly appealing about my job, but those are things that exist at every workplace. I just need to learn to focus more on the positives and less on the negatives.
One thing that I'm excited about is that I have been asked to develop the curriculum for the beginner Grammar & Writing course that I am currently teaching.
I taught this class last semester with a reading comprehension book (huh?) and nothing else in place. Instead of complaining about not having the proper books/ no resources for this class, I decided to make my own worksheets. Because of the new copyright laws at the university which prevents us from photocopying pages from books we have bought and then distributing the pages to the students, I had to think of another way I could teach this class. So on the weekend I wrote my own short paragraphs as a model and drew pictures so students could create their own little story from my pictures. There was no mid-term, final exam or class assignments prepared for this program. When I asked if I could write the mid-term exam for my students I was told 'no' because I don't have any curriculum/ test-taking background. Fair enough!
They hired a teacher to write my mid-term but when she became too overwhelmed with other work she opted out of making the final exam. When they had no one in place to write the final exam, I, once again, asked if I could write it. They said 'yes'. I met with the curriculum advisor and set out on a plan. I wrote the exam, it worked well for the class and I did a good enough job to get the attention of the curriculum developer for her to ask me to be in charge of writing the whole curriculum for this course.
What a great opportunity this is!
* ps. for those of you who don't know, I'm a sessional at the University of Regina in the ESL department