Hidden Valley Waterfall

Hidden Valley Waterfall

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Our curriculum is not up for discussion

In my second year overseas teaching now, I have realized one thing to be certain: this is NOT how we do it in America. Now, that said, teaching  overseas has its pros and cons.

Back home, teachers work long hours for little pay. They use a lot of their own money to buy items for their classrooms, so that they can enhance the learning for the students. The teachers often think of their students before themselves and if they are anything like me, spend more money supplying classroom snacks, etc. for the kids than for their own home. But, we do it because we care and want to make a difference. The rewards outweigh the struggles (most days).

So, the pros of overseas teaching:  less stressful (some days), smaller class sizes (most schools), more money (tax free is nice!), and less worry in the personal life, since the school provides housing (no rent payment due each month is a huge positive). I do not spend as much money out of pocket here, b/c I have a great set of parents who will help support the classroom with items I may need.

Now, some cons. I, personally, still spend countless hours outside of the classroom working on school materials. But, that is the teacher I am. I am not satisfied to give the basics, so I am trying to give more. I have a harder time with the communication between myself and students, which makes it harder to teach.

The MAIN thing that is harder here though is this: In America, "it is what it is" and that is all there is to it. The principals (most) have their teachers backs and will just tell the parents how it is. Oh, here, we can't offend, b/c we want the business. The parents want you to change the program, change how it is done, etc. And we have to try to work around that. We have to try to be accommodating. I do mind some things ,but when I hear the same argument over and over, it gets old. There are days I would like to say, "There are other international schools here".

Despite those days, I still love my class and their parents. I just miss the bluntness that I was used to. I like blunt. Sugar coating is not a skill I have, nor do I wish to.

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