Blog News

1. Comments are still disabled though I am thinking of enabling them again.

2. There are now several extra pages - Poetry Index, Travel, Education, Childish Things - accessible at the top of the page. They index entires before October 2013.

3. I will, in the next few weeks, be adding new pages with other indexes.

Saturday, 25 February 2012

China: A Day in the Life Part 10

This places me in a somewhat awkward position, paints me in a less then perfect light.
But let me explain.
Lessons are forty-five minutes long. Classes can have more than eighty students. That makes possible individual attention about thirty seconds, and that's without actually spending any time teaching. So what I do, mostly, is create groups and give them tasks to do as a group. Unfortunately when students don't work or don't want to work there simply isn't the time to try to persuade them so generally if they are quiet I just let them sit without participating.
I feel bad about it but I don't really know what else I can do without seriously disadvantaging all the students who do want to work.

Anyway, here's the poem.

Classroom Poem #2

In groups of eight they contemplate

the task I've set before them.

It's been designed with them in mind,

I hope it doesn't bore them.


Some buckle down without a frown

and try their best to do it:

apply their minds and try to find

the skill to get them through it.


The groups behind may be inclined -

at least when I am near them -

to put some thought in what they're taught

and talk so I can hear them.


But at the back, with faces slack,

they pay me no attention.

They can't disguise their panicked eyes

and lack of comprehension.


I do my best but if I'm pressed

admit I simply let them

ignore the class they'll never pass -

and go home and forget them.