The phrase that keeps running through my mind, the phrase that best describes my day, the cliche that best fits the moment is “I’m getting too old for this shit.”
I started 3 classes today, and it was a very last minute deal, like I did not know when I woke up this morning that this would happen. That’s life in the fast paced world of teaching English in Prague. It was at an elementary school in Chodov, and the first class was pretty good. Cute kids for the most part, but as I was trying to introduce myself to the kids on one side of the room, the chatter was rising on the other. I tried to keep it pretty fast paced, not to freeze the class out while talking to any one individual, but then you always have the one kid who freezes up on a question like “how old are you?” and you tell him it’s O.K. to answer in Czech and he’s still silent and the other kids are coming over and telling him what to say and he’s completely gone catatonic so you have to just move on.
The hardest part was between classes, though. The school has this insane system that I have to go classroom to classroom looking for the kids that are in the English group and then shepherd them through the hallways to ‘my’ classroom. A teacher went with me today, but this is going to be confusing as hell for a few weeks until I get all my students memorized.
The second class was older, and also for the most part well behaved, except for one little boy who seemed to take great pride in ignoring all my questions and getting the rest of the class to laugh about it.
It was the 3rd class where all hell broke loose. They just came in determined to raise hell, a bunch of crazed 8 and 9 year olds, putting tape on my back, lying to me about their names, refusing to sit down or be quiet, fighting with each other, pleading to go to the bathroom, I know all those damned kids didn’t need to pee at once.
By the end of it I was whacked, drained emotionally and physically. But I’m looking forward to next week.