“Burn it down”

After another day of insanity, a teacher yesterday said we may need to just “burn it down” and start the school over again. Emotionally drained, we wasted a good deal of our prep time debriefing what had just happened: 2-3 8th grade boys in residence hall filmed another boy while he was in the shower….

This May Put Us Over the Edge

A quick glance at this poor screenshot may not mean much to you, dear friend. Suffice it to say, this may very well put us over the edge. Various duties on top of full course loads on top of day to day coverages twice weekly extracurriculares on top of meetings on top of…. Now, residence…

The White Hair

It’s back. With a vengeance. Fellow teachers didn’t much notice last night’s hair incident mistake, when I attempted to cover up some white hair but slicing it off—promptly opening up a larger expanse of shorter white hair. Then my hair became much shorter on one side in front. Shorter and whiter. It took students in…

Missing Kid

That’s another thing about the life of a teacher—searching for missing kids in the bathroom. I found R. He says he was not on iPad because it had no power. But with R, it’s hard to know the truth. A sixth grader new to our school. He’s already been suspended for a week from the…

6th Grade Nightmare

Was getting the class back, pulling em from the brink, until W. threatened to kill C. Then C threatened to kill W. Then W hit C. That’s about how it went. W got sent out to teacher office, as I stood in doorway talking to C. Meanwhile, V—1st grader impersonating a sixth grader—was engaging in…

Yesterday, But…

On a Monday with a bunch of crazy 6th and 8th graders, I must return to my Happy Place—time and time again.

FRIDAY!

Each and every Friday should be savored and relished to its fullest extent. This Friday, September 16th, even more so. This week in Lingang, alongside the Shanghai shoreline, has seen: a typhoon throwing its strongest winds in the city down upon our area; 15 colleagues sent home—hours before typhoon struck— in the midst of a…

Uncertainties

In the ranks today, we’ve had 15 colleagues forced home into lockdown. 3 alone from our Lower Secondary department. They were all called to leave even though we get COVID tested here at school every single morning , five days a week. Lotus grocery store at the end of the block where colleagues live has…

And then he hugged me

Tuesday, September 13 Tony. Oh, Tony. Smallish boy of sixth grade. Brand new to our school. Very little to no English—yet. On his way out of afternoon homeroom yesterday, he suddenly walked over and gave me a quick half-hug. First and only student to do that this school year. It was incredibly endearing. All my…

Friday is Cake Day!

Yes, it’s true. I’ve seen it with mine own two eyes: A tall, dark chocolate VEGAN cake in our English Dept. fridge. It is really going to happen—again this week. Four days after Cake Monday, Cake Friday is coming! I’ve said it before and it’s worth saying again: no teacher is as happy as they…

Peanut

The Tale of “Peanut” She is a small, sprightly girl. She is in the sixth grade. Her name is Peanut. I must refrain from smiling too much as I call her name. Her classmates don’t seem to think anything is askance. In China, some students choose English names close in pronunciation to a given Chinese…

It’s the little things

Like the extra 35 minutes I have now. My Chinese homeroom counterpart is taking care of the Chinese moral/character class. Full Chinese, mandated by government. Friday afternoons, I teach the 50 minute Character Development in English. Now that colleague confirmed with me that I need not attend, I’m off writing to you all, thankful for…