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El albergue

El albergue

Monday, October 8, 2012

Time to swim


Today marks the beginning of the second week of the 2012-2013 school year for those of us who work as Auxiliares de Conversación. Or, in other words, all English classroom assistants here in Spain have jumped on in to the inexorable wave of educational madness that is school and have kept their heads afloat for at least one week. It´s nice to be back into the swing of things, but I think this year could definitely be described as that typhoon-like wave I just mentioned. What I mean is, things are a little bit crazy. Due to budget cuts, we have one regular teacher and one floating teacher less, and in an attempt to accomodate the different credentials of all the different teachers, the swirling whirlpool that is second grade looks something like this:

There are two classes, 2A and 2B.
2A has one teacher for Spanish, Math, and English. Their Science teacher is also the Science and English teacher for both 1st grade classes as well as the secretary for the entire school.
2B has a different teacher for Spanish and Math. Their English and Science teacher is also the director of the entire school. 
And the kids are wild, squirming, noisy things that love to shriek and wiggle.
There are, of course, the clueless ones too, and they just sort of float around the class, carried by the waves of energy their classmates exude, adding to the tangled confusion of little bodies because they don´t really know what´s going on.
Oy vey.

Also, there´s been a fair bit of confusion over the Auxiliares this year. First, there are supposed to be four of us, and right now there are only two. How? Well...

There was supposed to be another girl returning (like me) from last year, but she hasnt´shown up. Then, we were assigned someone last minute on the first day (who apparently got a double assignment to a second school without being aware of it, and so is currently trying to figure out where the heck she actually IS supposed to be). And the fourth spot is still a mysterious question mark. 

Now, if those two empty spots don´t get filled, then I´m assuming that the other Auxiliar and I will get new schedules so that every class gets at least one hour of native English help every week, which means that we will be all over the place. We´re already all over the place though - I work with both 2nd grade classes in English and Science and both 3rd grade classes in English, plus one hour a week with one 4th grade class in English and one with one 6th grade class in English. And if this Auxiliar finds out she has to go to the other school that seems to be claiming her, then I don´t know what´s going to happen!!!!!!

Despite the threateningly wild and tsunami-esque aspect this year seems to present though, I think it´s going to be a pretty good one. Why? Well, a lot of the kids have claimed me as a friend (even more now that I´ve come back for a second year), I really like a number of the teachers that I´m working with, and I'm excited to implement things I learned this summer at English camp (even though it was for the kids, it was like boot camp for English teachers!). 

So yeah, I'm ready to dive right in. Sink or swim, baby!

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