Two months, two jobs, one apartment, and a hand full of life long memories already banked. We made it past our probation period! EF likes us, even though we barely decided not to quit. Now we have to give a two month notice if we want to leave before a year has passed. Even though the job it is not what we expected we will deal with it until we have reached some of our goals. I enjoy the teaching a bit more than Katie, but the administrative BS of this company is driving me crazy. One of our main goals with this job was to work less and enjoy the food, people, and culture of China. We are scheduled for 9 hour days (one hour unpaid break) and with my 45-minute commute each way I’m gone for 10.5-11 hours 5 days a week. That’s a real job! We wanted a fake job, and more time with each other. Most people at my job have no idea how much I hate it, because happiness is a choice and it’s much more enjoyable to chose to be happy. My students love me and since they are adults we have some great conversations. We have three types of classes that coincide with the Learn, Try, Apply method. Face-to-Face classes have a max of 4 students (sometimes just one) and we teach new vocabulary (lexical sets) and grammatical structure (target language TL). I have to do my homework for many of these classes. I’m proud to say I REALLY know English now. Next, we have Workshop classes where students Try new vocabulary and TL these classes can have between 1-25 students (usually 10-15). Finally, we have Life Clubs where students Apply the lessons they have learned. These classes have very general guidelines and the teacher is supposed to talk less than 10% of the class, it’s more of a guided free-talk session. The class size ranges from 1-20 students (usually 5-15). I’m also scheduled for a Tea Time session (damn Brits) where I hangout and chat with the students for a 50 minute period. These are great, I just hope the Government isn’t listening in as they can get a bit interesting.
Katie and I are trying a bunch of fun food and exploring the city on our days off. I feel it has taken a solid two months for us to get settled, and now we can concentrate on having fun. The other teachers we work with are either cool like minded people that have come from all over the world, or weirdos dorks that didn’t fit-in in their own country and had to move to China to find a job or friend. We have been hanging out with some of the cool ones, and it’s a joy to swap stories of travel and culture.
If the cliché is true “what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger” we are going to strong as a Fire trUCK when this is over.