When I’m Playing the Part

It’s Week 3 at my new job, Week 4 in Thailand, and while I’d hardly say I’ve fully adapted to this new life – I wouldn’t even yet say that I view myself as more than a quick visitor to this country – I have been able to slip into the routine of playing the part.

My daily routine:

  • Wake up early
  • Walk to work (10 minutes)… Considering that it’s rainy season, I’m very grateful that I have yet to be caught in the rain on the way in.
  • Scan in around 8 AM, wave to students, and head to the office
  • Eat breakfast at my desk (raisin bread), check online for messages (if the Internet’s working), and lesson plan for between 30 minutes and 2 hours (depending on when my first class begins)
  • Depending on the day, I either have two or four classes, which is pretty low-key. Sometimes they’re back-to-back, sometimes not (again, depending on the day). I am teaching mostly first-year students, who are currently learning classroom vocabulary and basic grammar, as well as some third-year students, who are currently learning past participles. I can pretty much count on my students’ good temperament in my first-year classes, but the temperament of my third-years is always up for grabs. My academic coordinator gave me specific curriculum to use, so a basic outline of what to teach next is always at the ready for me. In addition, each teacher has a co-teacher with whom you lesson plan and share classes. A pretty helpful structure overall.
  • Break for lunch at noon… I either eat at the canteen on campus, at the school’s small store, at the market on campus, or, if I have an easy afternoon ahead, somewhere off-campus. Lots of choices!
  • Depending on the day, I either have classes again after lunch, or I have free time to lesson plan and whatnot. Sidenote: I think I’m going to start reading during a big part of my free time (1. So that I’m not staring at a screen all day 2. Because I can and 3. Because, really, it’s an awesome choice.)
  • Leave the office around 4 PM, and scan out
  • Walk back to my apartment (10 minutes but usually interrupted by a stop at Tesco Lotus, one of our neighborhood convenience stores)
  • Busy myself until dinner around 6:30 PM
  • Eat (usually at one of the local open-air restaurants and always for the equivalent of < $2)
  • Busy myself until sleep-time

Every morning I choose which pencil skirt I’ll wear, which solid-color sweater, which tank top. Will it be my gold watch or my white watch? Black flats or cheetah-print? Remember to pack my laptop, Kindle, journal, and so on (to make use of in my free time).

Next week marks the beginning of speaking tests and midterms. I’d say that fact is making me finally feel like a real teacher!

Happy end of June to ya. Catch ya in July (when, as always, I hope PQ will be a little less quiet.) 

In the meantime, some photos: 
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