Saturday, November 25, 2006

New Class & Superwriters Disaster

Megan, one of the Chinese teachers at work, quit her job. She is going to move home and pursue a life in the business world. Her last day is next month. She asked me to take over one of her classes and I accepted. She is an excellent teacher and the class is pretty sharp. Lucky for me, they are about 2 units behind one of my other classes, so I can simply use the existing lesson plans for this new group...a big time saver.

The class meets from 5:00 to 7:00 on Tuesdays & Fridays, which is good except that means that it buts up against my two-and-a-half hour Superwriters class on Tuesdays. From here on in, Tuesdays are gonna be rough.

Speaking of Superwriters, what a mess. I am adrift in that class. The expectations from my boss are at odds with the classes abilities. It's been difficult to get this group to write at the level that is expected by the school's leadership. Force-feeding them complex writing assignments is not a winning strategy. They simply don't have the ability to work at the prescribed pace. I realised this a few months back and scaled down the lesson plans to accommodate their shortcomings. I had a meeting with my boss about a week ago and she is less than pleased with their progress. I explained to her that I had to alter my approach so that everyone could keep up. This doesn't compute with the boss because slowing things down means less money per class period. The parents pay according to the progress in the texts. I am taking about 6 weeks longer to finish the text than she thinks is acceptable. I am doing my best to buckle down and make it more cost-effective. I am worried it comes at the expense of the kids and their chance to become excellent writers.

We'll see. I think there is going to be some substantial changes in the Superwriters class in the near future.

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