2014年12月1日月曜日

英会話のバイト ・ Working part-time as an English teacher

2週間前、英会話のバイトを2つ始めた。1つは教室の中に10人ぐらいに教えるバイト、そしてもう1つは1対1の英会話だ。今まで、教室に来る人は全員女性だった。1時から2時半までの授業だから、主婦しか来れないな。1対1の英会話を一緒にする人は中国人の男性だ。彼はもう社会人で、ラーソンで働いている。

教室の英会話では、僕がリードしない。大学院生の友達は「先生」のように教材を準備したり、教室を管理する。僕は彼に少しアドバイスやおすすめをするけど、教材のテーマとか、彼に任せる。彼は全然固くないので、先生の雰囲気をしない。それでいいと思う。みんなは英会話で遊びに来るので、「先生」のように見えなくてもいい。

今週の金曜日、少し実験をしてみる。今週まで、ほとんどのクラスの時間は友達の講義を聞いたり、教材で設定された表現を練習したりしていたけど、今週、一緒に会話やフリートークをやってみる。僕はそうしようと勧めした時、友達は少し考えている顔をしていたので、やはり反対しているということで、「どう思う?」と僕は聞いた。彼は中学生に教えることに慣れているので、中学生の態度、つまり、話さない傾向に慣れている。だから、フリートークの時間に、友達は誰も話さない可能性が高いと思っていた。しかし、主婦と中学生は全然違うだろう。前のレッスンに来たメンバーの中に、話したがる人が多かったと思った。もちろん、みんなのレベルは違うので、友達の講義を聞きたい人もいるけど、話したい人がいるので、友達の講義をずっと聞いたら、退屈になると僕は思った。

それで、彼は「会話に対して私が考えている日本人のステレオタイプを変えてください」と言った。今週の実験の効果を楽しみ。

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Two weeks ago, I started two part-time jobs as an English teacher. One of them is a class where I help teach about ten students, and the other one is a one-on-one lesson. Up until now, the people that have come to the classroom have all been housewives. Since the class is from 1 to 2:30, I guess only housewives could ever really come. The person I have the one-on-one lesson with is a Chinese guy. He has already graduated and is working for a company that runs convenience stores across Japan called Lawson.

In the classroom lesson, I don't lead the class. Instead, a friend of mine who is a graduate student at the school I'm going to acts as the “teacher”, preparing learning material and managing the class. I give him a bit of advice and recommendations, but I leave the work of deciding themes for the learning material up to him. Since he doesn't approach the class too academically, he doesn't really give the impression of being a teacher. I think that's okay, though. People just want to come and enjoy speaking in English, so it's okay if he doesn't seem like a real “teacher”.

This Friday, we're going to do a little experiment. Up until this week, most of the class time was spent listening to my friend's lectures or practicing some set phrases that he prepare as part of the learning materials, but this week, we're going to try giving the group more time to just talk. When I recommended we try that, my friend seemed a bit hesitant at first, so I asked him what he thought about the idea. Since he is used to teaching middle school students, he's used to their attitude and general lack of enthusiasm for talking. So, he thought there would be a good chance that nobody would talk even if given the chance to do so. However, middle school students and housewives are completely different. Many of the ladies that came for the last couple of lessons have wanted to talk. Of course, everybody is at different levels, so there are some that would like to listen to my friend's lectures, but since there are people that want to talk, I think that they'll get bored listening to him talk the entire time.

So, my friend said, “Please change my stereotype of Japanese people.” I'm looking forward to see what happens this week.
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