Today was my first day of school.
When I arrived, like a “new girl,” I didn’t know where to go because I still hadn’t received a schedule. My coordinator pointed me in the direction of a teacher, Jose Luis, told me to meet him in an hour, and ran off to a class. This is when Jose Luis told me that I’d be helping him prep for his class.
Jose Luis is really nice. He was full of information about past auxiliars (am I supposed to know all this stuff about their personal lives?), about Sevilla (I’m starting to look forward to Santa Semana and feria now), and about the school. Finally, we actually talked about his class: Technology.
I am so excited for this class! In Spain, Technology class is all about solving problems hands-on, and in the process they are exposed to several different kinds of engineering. We’re starting with materials: the properties of glass vs. ceramics vs. metal, for example. We’ll pass through a unit on circuitry and robotics. They’re saving the unit on Computer Programming for the end of the year.
Lining the walls in the Technology room are past projects. There are hand-made pinball machines, cranes made out of popsicle sticks, automatic bridges, and more. At the front of the room are bins full of scraps to build things out of. The walls are mounted with tools. I’m not sure if I’d rather teach this class or be in this class. The last time I did anything even remotely like this was in 8th grade when I built a cribbage-board shaped like a snake. I think the last circuit I made was using a potato to turn on a light bulb. Does using a cookie-cutter to make a heart-shaped piece of toast for Valentine’s Day count?
Anyway, Jose Luis’ educational philosophy is that learning should be fun. One of his favorite review exercises is “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?” I know this class is going to be a blast, especially with such an easy-going teacher, but I’ll also have to spend extra time studying. I have two thick textbooks I have to read in order to plan my lessons.
Other than Technology, I’m also assisting with music, math, natural science, and english. Except for music and technology, I’ll be teaching each of those subjects at several different levels, which means I am assisting with 11 classes in all.
Not-so-secretly, I wish I could trade one of my 4 English classes for a Social Studies class. I think it would be interesting to learn about Spanish history. It would have also been interesting to assist in the Ethics class and hear the students’ perspectives on Big Questions.
Still, I’m super excited to write silly word problems for math class. And I already have a great idea for a music class lesson, thanks to Bill (Hail to the Victors!). English class is adorable, and I’m impressed with even the first-year students’ abilities (but why does the whole class always laugh whenever someone has to pronounce the “uh” sound like in “cut?”). Anyway, my English classes have great senses of humor, and although my role in those classes is much smaller, I think I’ll enjoy sitting in on them.
So, overall: it was a great first day. I’m looking forward to school again tomorrow. I like my fellow teachers a lot, and the headmaster was very welcoming. He even “invited me” to tea. Bill taught me that if someone says, “I invite you,” that means they’re paying. In case you were wondering, he is correct!
Tomorrow I meet 3 more teachers. Thursday is orientation. I have Fridays off, and I’ll be heading off to Lagos, Portugal. Soon after that, my beloved Olga is coming to visit for 10 whole days.