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Thread: Oh my god, I'm teaching !

  1. #1
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    Default Oh my god, I'm teaching !

    Help me Llamas, you're my only hope !

    It's labour law classes for adults who are going to work in the departement dealing with wages. So, law is just something to add to their training but they are not actually going to use it. They still have to know a little bit though...

    I did my first class yesterday and it was horrible.

    First, the class was boring but it's not my fault. It was about the sources of labour law and there's no way to make this interesting. Even my excellent teachers bored me when I was in college.

    Second, the class was supposed to last 4 hours. It lasted 3. So I guess I went too fast but at the end of the class, it seemed like everybody understood at least a little bit. I spent the last hour asking them questions to make sure they understood and explained them how a Labour court works.

    Third, it seems that somehow, people have grown lazy since I was a student myself. They asked me for the plan of the class with a sentence under each title to sum up each part. Well... I want to tell you to go fuck yourself. You have a pen, you have paper so... take notes ?

    And last, and that's the worst but I can't do anything about it. They are adults. Aged 22 to 42. One of them used to work in Human resources and constantly tries to show that he knows everything better than me. I'm a kid to him. And the students think I'm their age. Yeah, I'm 31 and I look young. Even with my glasses on and my best suit. Still looks like a student.

    Anyway, I go back tomorrow and several times after that. The next classes will be a lot more funnier (well... it's all relative) and practical so I think it might be better but it wasn't a pleasant experience at all.

    So I'd take any advice. How to evaluate the time something is going to take, how to make it last, how to deal with the not-so-easy students, and other stuff !
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  2. #2
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    Congratulations on teaching, first of all. That alone should tell you what you need to know - that unlike anyone in the class, the depth and breadth of your experience covers everything required and what they need to learn.

    Since it's a class of adults, it's not uncommon for them to be more challenging, I think - but it's a sense of challenge that will rise and fall as their overlapping expertises come and go, whereas yours will be relevant and complete all the way through (as it should be). The worst thing you can do is hesitate, Harley! These are puppies who think they are lions - if you hesitate they will begin to believe it!

    Only joking - sort of. For the summary, I got nothing - if something was easy enough to learn from two sentences I'd expect to be told to learn it on my own time. Unless my superiors considered me either too irresponsible or incapable of learning it on my own (I suggest you subtly hint at this in your class).
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  3. #3
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    Very nice, Harley I'll start by saying it will improve in time. I don't think anyone starts out as a good teacher! As long as you enjoy it and strive to get better at it, it will definitely come along. When I look back to 5 years ago, I was an awful teacher... I'm amazed that anyone offered me work!

    Quote Originally Posted by Harleyquiiinn View Post
    It's labour law classes for adults who are going to work in the departement dealing with wages. So, law is just something to add to their training but they are not actually going to use it. They still have to know a little bit though...

    First, the class was boring but it's not my fault. It was about the sources of labour law and there's no way to make this interesting. Even my excellent teachers bored me when I was in college
    Unfortunately, I can't give any advice on this part. As I teach English privately, all of my students either need or want to learn it. I don't have experience with teaching a boring subject to people who don't necessarily want to be there or practically need it.

    Second, the class was supposed to last 4 hours. It lasted 3. So I guess I went too fast but at the end of the class, it seemed like everybody understood at least a little bit. I spent the last hour asking them questions to make sure they understood and explained them how a Labour court works.
    Time management is a skill that will develop. I struggled with that for a long time - either having too much material planned, or not enough. My solution ended up being to always plan for more than the time allowance, but to try to break up the time mentally by section. So, I expect this section to take 15 minutes, the next one 20, and so on. Then if we finish one part and there are still 15 minutes left, we'll skip ahead to a part that takes 15 minutes and go back in the next lesson. But also, thanks to the nature of what I teach, it's very easy to fall into conversation, or show a couple short videos, as these are also ways that my students learn.

    Third, it seems that somehow, people have grown lazy since I was a student myself. They asked me for the plan of the class with a sentence under each title to sum up each part. Well... I want to tell you to go fuck yourself. You have a pen, you have paper so... take notes ?
    As a private teacher, I have a ton of freedom. I would never listen to a student's request to do something like that. I'd calmly and politely suggest they do that, as they'll get more out of it by doing it themselves. That is not part of my job, and is only about them being lazy.

    And last, and that's the worst but I can't do anything about it. They are adults. Aged 22 to 42. One of them used to work in Human resources and constantly tries to show that he knows everything better than me. I'm a kid to him. And the students think I'm their age. Yeah, I'm 31 and I look young. Even with my glasses on and my best suit. Still looks like a student.
    I wear jeans and Converse shoes most days... I also wear a backpack. I struggled with people treating me that way, too, but I just changed my physical composure and my response to such treatment. However, I'm able to turn away students - and I do just that if I don't like them and they treat me badly. I don't think it's about how you dress, though. Just don't take their shit. But also refrain from trying to assert yourself too much. I'd work on trying to put yourself at the SAME level as them - neither above nor below.

    I hope that helps... sorry I can't be of better use. If I think of anything more, though, I'll let you know.
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  4. #4
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    Thanks to both of you, it did help

    2nd time went way better and I ended up kind of ignoring the Human Resources guy. He just confuses everyone to show he knows stuff.

    I still had trouble dealing with time but not so much with the students. I liked the puppies who think they are lions stuff

    Also, I decided to listen to some of the things they want. After all, they never really studied law so ... What I do is I treat a subject, make sure they understood, and sum it up in one sentence. I dictate that last part because they really seem unable to take notes... maybe that will come...
    ___________________________________________

    All the Beautiful Things you do

    Respect my authoritah !

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