Monday, May 20, 2013

This is It. First Day of a New Career.

This is it.  The time has come.  My contract situation got finalized over the weekend.  This morning, I put down the deposit and a month's rent on a new place to live.  Tomorrow, I begin teaching. 

It's finally happening.  First day of a new career.  Sure, up until now, I've been going through a lot of interesting and life-changing stuff.  Going back to when I started this blog in November, there's been plenty of experiences.  It's all been leading up to this, that moment where I step in front of a classroom full of kids and introduce myself as their new English teacher, Mr. Joko.

I'm not sure what to expect, either from myself or from the kids. I've done my practice teaching, and the feedback I received in my training was mostly positive.  I'm not worried about failing, but I don't expect it to be easy either. As for my demeanor, I'm not going to be as happy-go-lucky and entertaining at the start as I may later on.  I want these kids to learn, and to learn, they need to feel engaged and the best way to do that is to make it entertaining. 

That will come later. At the start, I think it would be best for me to seem like a stern disciplinarian. Make it clear we're here to learn, if we have a good time while doing that, so be it.  Later on, I can do things like bring in the ukulele and make it more fun. 

 A little on the school I'm going to be at: It is named Patumkongka and it is one of the most well known schools in all of Bangkok.  It's been around for over 100 years and counts former Thai prime ministers amongst its alumni.  It is a government, public school of about 1800 students, grades 7 through 12.  I'll be teaching all ages and all levels (not me by myself, there are 3 or 4 other foreign teachers there too).  The advanced English classes are in the air-conditioned building; the general classes are not.  How many and exactly what kinds of classes I'll be teaching, I find out tomorrow.

Some things-to-know I got from a flyer made by my placement agency (sic):
  • Students who are studying in this school are mostly from lower to middle class families.
  • Kids are quite naughty!. and have good knowledge of English (in the AP classes)
  •  Classroom management/class control is important for especially conversation classes. 

I haven't had to work for 7 weeks now; so it will be nice to be getting a paycheck again. 

Another thing about Patumkongka High School is that they must have a nice A/V department as they put together this snappy little montage video with what I assume must be the school's theme song...


  1. Wish you the very best as you embark on this new adventure. Looking forward to hearing how it goes. I am sure those kids will try and push the limits to start off. All kids do.

  2. Congrats Joko and WOW... still inspired by the huge leap you have taken. Thank you for sharing your experiences. Truly! Best wishes for lots of success for you and your students. :)

  3. Good luck. don't be a clown or a fool. Believe in yourself, but don't think of it as an open mike.

  4. Congratulations to you! I have really enjoyed your blog. You will be in our prayers as you start this new chapter in your life. Looking forward to many more blogs from you.

  5. Best wishes for a successful career!

  6. This is quite possibly the most important thing you have embarked on in your whole life. All the best from me.... another of your Mum's blogging friends.

    Oh, and by the way your blog is good. Thanks fr inviting us into yur life.


  7. Welcome to the grind.

  8. Awesome, Joko, you couldn't ask for any better! Happy for you.


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