It’s English Midterms Week here at my Bangkok high school, and I have had the busiest, most intensive week of work I’ve had in a long time. See, I have to write these exams. I have to compose an instrument that measures not only their performances as students, but in a way, my performance as a teacher. How well they do on the test reflects on how good a job I’ve done teaching them. Consequently, I’ve spent a lot of time this week at the school and at home compiling ‘study guides’, documents which condense the last 6 weeks of instruction into a page or two of notes. I want them to do well.
There is no worse feeling as a teacher that I’ve experienced than wandering the classroom on test day and watching as the kids sit there squirming, staring at the test page, grabbing their hair in both fists, completely clueless as to how to proceed on the exam. I was in charge of teaching you. I wrote the test. It would be wonderfully validating if you would methodically spill out what I’m asking of you.
Doesn’t always work out that way.
On a recent quiz for my 7th grade ‘Intensive English’ class, I had one kid who didn’t understand the concept of a true or false question. He summoned me over to explain. I point to the instructions and said, ‘the answer is true or false’. He answered one question ‘true’, the second ‘false’ and the last question he answered ‘or’.
Gave my first midterm today to my 11th graders. A quick sampling of their results shows that they’re averaging scores with about 80 to 90% correct answers. Just where it’s supposed to be. Tomorrow, I test my other 3 intensive English classes. I hope they do well.
Tonight’s video is still me catching up on the backlog of old footage. HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY FROM BANGKOK!!!!