So I figure this is long way over due, especially since I’ve been talking about it for like the past two or three posts. I wasn’t sure which day I would write about since I’m only at Hokubu three times a week and the schedule changes depending on tests, special events or if teachers are sick/decide to cancel for some reason. I’m usually at my JHS Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, but for the sake of getting all my class years in, I’ll do Friday.
5:30 Alarm wakes me up to remind me I should probably start thinking about getting up
5:45 Alarm goes off again because I most likely turned the first one off without a snooze
5:55 Yeah, that’s right; third alarm because this is how long it takes me to get out of bed. USUALLY this works and I get up to shower
6:30 Rummage around the apartment deciding what to wear while simultaneously finding breakfast and deciding if I should try to make a lunch
6:45 Snarf whatever breakfast I managed to find and grab a fruit or pack of crackers for lunch because I ended up deciding not to make a sandwich
7:00 Take out the burnable trash down the street and head to the bus stop outside my apartment
7:20 Arrive at the bus stop closest to my school and walk the rest of the way. If I’m lucky a student might talk with me, but usually it’s just me and my thoughts (or headphones if I’m in a musical mood that morning)
7:35 Arrive at school third years scream good morning from the third floor balconies when they see me; drop off stuff in the locker room, check mail box for papers, check desk for papers, check weekly teacher board for class/period changes and teacher message board to see if any of my teachers called in sick. I also use this time to prep anything last minute for my lesson, like making copies for papers
8:10 My day officially starts (when I start getting paid). On Tuesday, this is when the teacher’s meeting usually takes place. I understand maybe… 20% of anything ever because it’s always pretty formal and I can only make out small snippets of what’s being discussed
8:30 to 9:20 Free period; usually spent working on lesson plans for later lessons in the week or finish prep for other classes for that day
9:30 to 10:20 Midori (special needs class) This class I have on Tuesday’s too; I much prefer the Friday class because the students are much more genki (energetic) with the impending weekend. Tuesday they’re just dead.
10:30 to 11:20 HR 1-3 (read as Homeroom Year 1, Class 3; Year 1 is equivalent to 7th grade in the States. Year 2 is 8th grade and Year 3 is 9th grade) I love teaching my first years because they always get into the games I’m doing. There’s only been a few instances where they weren’t into it, but from what I was able to gather they usually get that way right before tests. I’ve learned to make physical activities or activities that are really fun to take their mind off of it
11:30 to 12:20 HR 2-1
12:20 to 12:50 LUNCH. I actually usually don’t eat lunch; if I do, it’s not a lot. Since I have so many food restrictions, it’s pretty much impossible for me to eat kyushoku (school lunch). The majority of the food that’s found in the kyushoku is a trigger food for flare ups for me, so I just avoid it all together
12:50 to 1:15 Speak with my JTE’s if they’re in the staff room or walk around the school. Sometimes I have to stay at my desk though because my JTE’s have sent students to do something or turn something in to me. I also have a letter box with my 3rd years, so I check on that if I’m able to leave
1:20 to 2:10 HR 1-1
2:20 to 3:10 HR 3-2 Usually while I’m waiting for class to start (there’s a small 10 minute break in between each period) the girls will come up and talk with me; they’ll also play with my hair since I leave it down most days. The boys will also try to come talk and convince me to try a new brand of coffee (they’re shocked I don’t drink coffee on a regular basis). I really, REALLY like teaching 3rd years. They’re into learning English, love my activities and the majority of the girls in the two classes I teach write letters to me every week. The boys can sometimes get a little out of hand, but they’ve died down in the past week or so
4:10 My day officially ends, but I stay longer to talk with my JTE’s to plan for next week if we haven’t already had the chance to do it earlier on in the week.
4:30 to 5:00 Head home on the bus!
And there you have it! Roughly what a day looks like for me. Some days aren’t as packed as this; Friday just happens to be the one day that I have the bulk of my lessons. Tuesday is four classes and Wednesday is three. I’ll do a post on a day at an elementary school to since those are quite a bit different.