I began working at Koh Sirae School – on the island just to the east of Phuket Town – as a fill-in teacher after our two previous instructors there quit. In the blink of an eye, I went from a relatively light weekly schedule of teaching Business English in-house for my agency’s language school to one that completely exhausts me. I do love this school – and it’s a quick 20-minute bus trip form my home – but I haven’t quite adjusted to the drastic decrease in my free time. I haven’t had as much time to concentrate on activities such as reading, stamp collecting or blogging.
Stuck for a Friday Photos topic this week (I was too tired to attend the Chinese New Year festivities on Thursday), I decided to present the best of the limited amount of classroom photos I’ve shot at Koh Sirae School in the past couple of weeks or so. As at every school I’ve taught in Thailand, the children are very friendly and eager to have their photo taken.
The students also love showing off the work they do in class, be it picture vocabularies and sentence assignments written in their notebooks or the stray coloring sheet given to early-finishers.
Speaking of blackboards, I’d been away from daily in-school teaching long enough to have forgotten how the chalk dust permeates everything – from coating my black trousers to getting under my fingernails and, I’m sure, coating my throat causing a chronic cough. I also had to re-learn my picture-drawing skills and this school also wants me to add Mind Maps for the students to copy.
Some of the classes are full of eager-to-learn children which is always a joy. Others have a few trouble-makers that quickly learned that I won’t allow disruptions in my lessons. I must say that, overall, this is one of the best-behaved schools I’ve worked in.
I’d only taught at Koh Sirae School for a few days when Valentine’s Day came around. I’ve been here long enough to be prepared with my sheets of stickers; the students delight in covering each other (and their teachers) with hearts and cupids. I even had my older students make Valentine cards.
One of the most touching aspects of coming to work here was that so many of the kids remembered me from an English Camp at the school a year ago. I felt like a returning rock star with the reception they gave me on my first day. That feeling hasn’t yet dissipated. I love it here and I love the kids.
(I do miss having free time for my other pursuits, however. Just another month until the end of the school year…)