Wow, turns out I haven’t blogged in more than a week – 10 days I think.
Sorry, to the wee wee fan base! No excuses really, just blah blah blah.
So I started teaching last week in the ‘Explore’ program at UBC. To re-cap and for any new wee wee fanbasers, Explore is a federal government bursary program where university students can come to various cities in Canada for five weeks to improve their English or French. Their time is jam packed with classes, assignments, tests, and activities after school into the wee hours of the night. Most of the students at UBC are from Quebec or immigrants to Quebec. UBC also teaches French to anglophones from Quebec but only for one five week session. French students can pick from two five week sessions.
Phew, explained it. Anyway, ELI provides teachers for Explore, which is part of the Languages, Culture and Travel program at UBC. Seniority teachers get offered first, then folks like me. I had an interview and got hired on the spot, which was great! Explore at UBC (at Langara and Capilano University it is different) has no curriculum and the teachers make it up from scratch and without any texts, so a challenge indeed. We are able to pick our own them and I decided on, “Media and Current Events.”
The first week (last week) we taught full days but now it is to be half days Monday, Wed. and Friday and full days Tuesdays and Thursdays. Tuesdays we are to take the students on field trips in the afternoons.
Phew, finished explaining part 2. Anyway, it is busy, busy busy, similar to a rollercoaster ride they say and indeed it is true. I haven’t taught the Quebecois before and they are extremely fluent but have some errors. They are on the ball, young and demanding. A great change in some ways and rather scary in others. My homeroom class is good, albeit a little quiet and not enjoying my humour as much as the other class. Uh well. Friday I learned how to connect my laptop to the laptop projector, which was a huge thing for me! The classrooms are generally nice (Buchanan building for those of you who know UBC) and I love the campus, which is especially lovely this time of year. So much construction though, clear through to at least 2016. Craziness.
So, I’m doing the five week session, then have an (unpaid) 9 days off and then another 5 week session. After that, it is 3 weeks back at ELI. 13 weeks of work over 14 weeks, until August 24. I’m thrilled about it all. Curriculum writing experience, etc. It is so good for me to be working, it really is. There are 5 other English teachers – 3 of whom I know from ELI, one I used to work with at the corporation (ooops, almost typed the name of the school), and one who is new to me. The coordinator is a nice young fellow. There are also about 20 bilingual monitors who are responsible for afternoon workshops and evening activities so they are super super busy. And young so they can cope with it!
I’m feeling pleased about being back at UBC but also somehow heavy. I don’t know, I guess it’s the realization that soon and again I will be unemployed again. Yes, yes, negative thinking, yes, yes. Just how I’m feeling. I’m wanting some permanence I think, some security. I mean I’ll probably be able to work these 13 weeks at UBC every year (depending on student numbers of course and depending how I do teaching Explore, so far so good, I think) but 13 weeks is about 39 fewer weeks than I need. Hmmm. The corporation is growing again, with lots of students. So I still torture myself about whether or not I should have put in a whole lot of money (and would have gotten most of it back) as I could still be there. I know, I know, same old same old. At the same time, I’ve had a chance to have these great new experiences. Tricky, tricky. I am an emotional gal, tis true. Anyway, 3 months work is nice that is for sure and not bad pay either, enough that I may be able to save a wee wee bit or at the very least not spend more of my savings.
I’m tired so that does make me more emotional, also true.
What else? Oooh, Sister Wives reality show is back! Two new episodes tonight. The reality of their lives is becoming more prominent on the show and it is not a happy four wives, one husband situation. I admit it, I read their book too (ghost written so no grammatical mistakes) and wowza dysfunctional. Exciting.
Kitsilano Pool is once again open for the summer. Got a three month pass. This, I like. See you there.