I now officially have about 16 hours of classroom teaching. And while six of them were for my CELTA, the others have been for TEC. Being in the classroom, even just as a substitute teacher, taught me that I can indeed handle classroom teaching and on some level I really like it. It makes a nice change of pace from the one on one teaching that I’ve been doing. The CELTA classroom had 10 students in it while TEC has had four, three, and two. I don’t remember much about teaching during my CELTA. I think that was due to the fact that I was so damn tired. I was waking up at four in the morning to prepare lessons on the days that I was teaching which was every couple of days. Still, my CELTA ended up being prophetic. Who knew that for five months of my life I’d be waking up at 2:30 in the morning to teach from three until 9 AM Eastern standard time? The fact that I did that for four months straight plus doing some evenings from eight to midnight on Fridays and Saturdays boggles my mind to this day. It was such a relief when I got to Europe and my hours switched to 9 AM to 3 PM Central European time and 10 AM to 4 PM Central European summertime.
Felix and I have decided to see each other on Sundays. For two hours. Which makes it worth it for both of us. You can cover a lot more ground in two hours then you can in two sessions at one hour each. That suits me just fine as I was going to open up classes to VIPKid on the weekends again. With the current Chinese regulations coming into play in November, it represents a $500 a month decrease in pay. That last hour always filled for me and to lose it is going to be a huge issue. I may still open Saturdays back up which will put me back at work seven days a week which I don’t like but don’t see much choice of stopping. This is particularly true because the work at TEC is so sporadic that it’s hard to make a living. Also over at VIPKid, I am noticing that my slots are not filling up as much as they were before. For instance of the 20.5 hours that I opened up for the week from 14 to 20 October, only 13 have filled so far. Also, short notice bookings have dried up since the summer. I am thinking, therefore, to add trials to my repertoire, but I don’t really want to. I never liked them and I didn’t like selling the company. I was never very good at it. Plus the fact that you are forced to teach level one is a hard pass for me. I do not want three-year-olds in my classroom.
I checked in with Katya’s mom and apparently, they have left me for cheap online lessons in English. She’s also thinking about leaving Poland and going to the States for a year so that they can get immersed in the language. It’s not a bad plan language-wise but I’m not sure I would want to do it given the current climate in the US. Speaking with her and hearing of her plans made me nostalgic for some former students. To that end, I got in touch with my student in Montpelier and Janice. And while I didn’t mention lessons it was nice to get in touch and hear what they’ve been doing. I think that’s the best part of my job. I can stay in contact with my students.
That’s all she wrote for this Inkreadable installment. But stay tuned. As always, there is more to come.