JISHOU, HUNAN — I now have a new schedule, which will change slightly next month after we return from the National Holiday Sept. 29 to Oct. 3. The Thursday afternoon class moves up one time block.
|8:00 – 9:40||Oral Business English 2005 – Room 4418||Oral English 2007 – Room 4420||Oral English 2005 – Room 4218||Written English 2005 – Room 4418||Written English 2008/g1 – Room 4420||Oral Business English 2005 – Room 4418||Oral English 2007 – Room 4420|
|10:10 – 11:50||Oral English 2008/2 – Room 4418||Oral English 2008/g2 – Room 4421||Written Business English 2005 – Room 4218||Oral English 2008/1 – Room 4418||Oral English 2008/2 – Room 4418|
|15:00 – 16:40||Written English 2008/g2 – Room 4419||Written English 2008/g2 – Room 4419|
|16:50 – 18:30||Oral English 2008/g1 – Room 4218 (until Oct. 1)|
|Sat. and Sun. classes only 27 and 28 September|
We’re meeting Monday and Tuesday classes on the weekend, so that the freshmen get a full week’s worth of classes. Their military drills ended today. Mercifully, I will get the weekends off again beginning next month.
Typical of locations in hot climates, the university does not schedule classes between 12 noon and 3 pm. The tradition is to take a long lunch and/or a siesta. Beginning in October, classes will resume at 2:30, so all my afternoon blocks will start a half-hour earlier.
In high-school teacher terminology, this looks I have 11 preps, one for each class. In practice, however, I can probably use the same prep for all the freshmen classes, reducing the number to 6. Each class is 100 minutes long, with two 45-minute sessions separated by a 10-minute break. That’s 18.3 hours of contact time a week.
By comparison, last year (and for most of the 20 previous to that) I met five classes a day, five days a week. Each class met for four 40-minute sessions and one 85-minute session a week. That works out to be 20.4 hours of contact time.
So I’m not going to complain. I teach fewer hours and have fewer classes each day. The drawback, from the pedagogical standpoint, is that I meet each class only once (sometimes twice, for oral and written English) a week. So, it’s harder to build the rapport and trust necessary to facilitate effective learning for all the students.
But we’re managing.