I have been working as a foreign language teacher in different independent schools for 2 years, ever since I moved to NYC. This means I have experience teaching grades 4-11 by now and can deal with lots of different ages and maturity levels. Interestingly enough, I come to find that maturity is not what we make it to be. While 5th and 6th graders still act responsible and considerate, and can still look at the world with wonder, I witness how motivation decreases a lot after 7th grade, and interest is lost as students hit puberty. For example, while my last job at a small middle school gave me the opportunity to work with really motivated children who performed exceptionally well in their first year (giving me hope about being an educator) my new job is not quite the same.
To give you some examples, these are some of the statements I collected ever since I started working at an Upper School, 2 months ago:
1) Ms. Drake can we just watch a movie today?
2) Can watch this movie all week?
3) This vocabulary quiz is IMPOSSIBLE! Nobody can do it!
4) Ms. Drake, Dimash just called me Hitler! Can you tell him to stop!
5) Ms. Drake do you have a boyfriend?
6) Ms. Drake, you just gave me a yellow marker, and I am Asian. That’s so racist!
7) Ms. Drake I forgot my homework, can I give it to you at the end of the day?
8) Can I give you my homework at the end of the month?
9) Can I just give you my late homework assignments at the end of the semester?
10) Ms. Drake how can you go to grad school and also teach here? Do you even have a life?
11) I know I got an F Ms. Drake, but I’m just going to buy Rossetta Stone and learn Spanish by myself this summer.
12) Ms. Drake, what does CULO mean?
13) What does HUEVOS mean?
14) What does MIERDA mean?
15) Ms. Drake, quizzing us with ten vocabulary words every Wednesday is so UNFAIR! This is so hard nobody can do this! We already have so much to do!
16) Ms. Drake Dimash is poking me with a marker can you tell him to stop!
17) What do you mean this character in the story is “hiding something”? Is he, like, hiding a tattoo?
I still love what I do, and am really enjoying these kids. But I have to say that whenever I am not at work, and see a crowd of teenagers walking down the street, I cross to the other side. All of this to tell you journal, that I am ready for Spring break, and that I will be going to Mexico with Jasmine for vacation. Hopefully, my worst nightmare will not come true, and Mexico will not be full of drunken teenagers...the very people I am attempting to take a vacation from.
Hi Ho to that.