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Re: Quitting because of students?
« Reply #20 on: November 07, 2012, 08:33:50 pm »
Are your lessons fun? Are they engaging? I've found that even the shittiest kids pay attention if it the lesson is good enough. Do you know their names? Their real names? It's a lot more effective to say, "Stop it, Min-ho!" than it is to say, "Stop it, student!" or use English nicknames.

Make the lessons better and learn the kids' names. That's taken care of most of the discipline issues I've had. Also, carry a stick. I wrote "carry," not use. You don't have to beat students. You just have to make them think that you will.

This comment gets an 'enjoy the honeymoon' from me.  :afro:

OP I have definitely been where you are-- not exactly where you are, but very close to where you are. I've had horrible classes that only responded after I found a game that they would play, and would not respond to anything else. Finally, they got bored of that game and there was nothing I could do. 

You really can't blame the previous teacher-- chances are they were like that when he arrived as well. This is almost always the fault of the hagwon owner.

I would definitely quit ASAP-- no amount of money is worth that kind of stress, and if the hagwon is allowing that kind of behavior/doesn't have a system in place where you are being supported, then they deserve to go under.

Good luck finding a new job.

  • jamasian
  • Super Waygook

    • 275

    • December 05, 2011, 03:02:00 pm
    • Suncheon, S. Korea
Re: Quitting because of students?
« Reply #21 on: November 09, 2012, 04:36:00 pm »
Every day, they come in yelling and screaming at the top of their lungs. They ignore me ... scream at me and yell "NO!" ....they throw paper and erasers at me when my back is turned. They flip me off and try to stab me with pencils.

Say whaaat? Quit.

I've tried several forms of punishment. Taking away stickers, keeping them in class during break time, giving them extra homework, making them stand up with their hands raised. Even twisting their ears....One day the head teacher came in....and that worked, .... a half-life of 20 minutes.

You've pretty much done the book, except video taping them. Quit. You'd have to video every class for a while before they start respecting.

...I've caught a few saying "shibal" to me...Took them to the principal, they were moody ....wouldn't write or take part in anything .... The next class, right back to their same terrible ways.

Didn't even leave a lasting impression? Quit.

I've only been here a month ...

Quit. I only see another 11 of the same months. You've been here for a while. You know what to do.

Re: Quitting because of students?
« Reply #22 on: December 26, 2012, 11:57:42 am »
[ I actually clicked this discussion topic bc i'm going through these feelings bc of two of my 5th grade classes. (5th grade! can u imagine what they're going to be like next year when theyre badass 6th graders? i shudder. they're even worse than my worst 6th grade class last year).]

I agree totally...I'm so scared about next year if I do end up staying at the same school. I have one nasty grade 5 class this year. They are just really really rude to their classmates. I'm worried about them becoming grade 6 next year!

Re: Quitting because of students?
« Reply #23 on: December 26, 2012, 03:17:13 pm »
making them stand up with their hands raised. Even twisting their ears. It has no affect.

First off, why would you ever physically punish a student? If a principal were to find out you forced students to stand with their hands up, that might be grounds for a reprimand. If they were to find out you twisted students ears? Say goodbye to the job.

Where are your co-teachers in this? It is it just your class in which the students are this disrespectful? Is your school actively contacting parents to inform them of their children's behavior?

I know I would dread going to such a class. Without knowing much else about the background of this school and your situation, the best bet is to get the help of other teachers in the school and especially the homeroom teacher. I've had some pretty bad classes and usually the homeroom teacher knows it too. Once I let the homeroom teacher know the poor behavior of their students they were a bit embarrassed and gave them a serious scolding. Then again my situation was no where near as apocalyptic as yours. Really sorry to hear you are in this situation.

It's a hagwon, so there is no homeroom teacher.

When I went to the owner and the other teachers about their behavior, I was told to make them stand with their hands raised and twist their ears. I was uneasy with it as well, which is why it's only a last resort.

The school feels no need to contact parents, no matter how terrible they are. It's kind of wealthy area, so if the parent might just as well move their kid to another hagwon that will complain less about how ***** their kid is.

I'm the only foreigner, and the Korean teachers are of little help. I've asked them to have a talk with the kids or back me up on something, it just goes ignored. The kids back talk to them but nowhere near as bad as they do in my class. I literally spend half of every class just trying to maintain order and can spend hardly any time actually teaching them anything.

Here they come now. If there is a God, let him have mercy on me.

I can really empathize with you.  It sounds like a few classes at my old Hagwon.   I only did fun games and things during my classes (hardly any actual teaching), used positive and negative reinforcement, and they still were unbelievably bad.  They couldn't even color without fighting with each other.  Even though I didn't have those classes THAT often during the week, it was still enough to just drag my energy down significantly.  Whenever I went to my director and co-workers for help it did nothing.  But yet, the director just wanted to be paid to stay open.

For that reason, as well as some others, I quit that job in 6 months.  Its a pity because I loved the location and other things, but the students in those few classes were just too awful.

If you can figure out a way to manage, then go with it but don't overextend  yourself and feel obligated to stay in a situation that's dragging you down heavily.  You deserve to have a job where you can actually do your job.
« Last Edit: December 26, 2012, 03:27:14 pm by jenilyn8705 »

Re: Quitting because of students?
« Reply #24 on: December 27, 2012, 07:57:38 am »
You are being verbally attacked and physically threatened and abused. 

All the "make it fun" advice is well....seriously?

You are the experienced teacher here...most here haven't had the long term experience.  I worked in NY for 10 years and I feel your pain.  One class or even a few students can have detrimental and nasty consequences on your psyche...never mind being on the other side of the planet at the same time.

Look for other job is worth this..nothing...we are really not paid well for all this.

Message me if you need to crash..I am in Busan. 

Look out for YOU. 

Re: Quitting because of students?
« Reply #25 on: December 27, 2012, 09:12:48 am »
The most important factors in whether students will listen to you lie in two key areas that are more or less unchangeable:
1. Students' age, motivation levels, cultural upbringing, parents, area, etc
2. What you look like

There are some things that could help, but only work in conjunction to the two strongest points mentioned above. Some things:
1. Charismatic personality
2. Confident body language
3. Creating intrinsic motivation (e.g., making an interesting lesson)

A book about classroom management:

It's clear you should quit your job... in the meantime, ignore them or teach them as if there's an imaginary audience. Also, sounds like a good time to practice self-confidence. If you had extremely high levels of self-confidence, kids wouldn't get you upset. As for the pencil attacks... surely you can defend yourself :p

Re: Quitting because of students?
« Reply #26 on: December 27, 2012, 09:43:20 am »
Loosen the reins and lower your expectations. If the kids don't want to learn, then don't waste your time and enjoy trying to do that. I have and have had similar classes. Today we just played bingo. I considered it a win, because I was able to get (the majority) of the students to write 25 English words, and then I sneaked in questions like, Who is better, G-Dragon or TOP when the word was Big Bang, and when is the weather snowy for that word. My stress level has gone down, and the students are still displaying at least a low level of English.


  • joker320
  • Waygookin

    • 14

    • September 13, 2012, 01:33:20 pm
    • South Korea, Gyeonggi Do
Re: Quitting because of students?
« Reply #27 on: December 27, 2012, 10:47:33 am »
I am sorry to hear about your situation and I hope you can turn it around in the new year. hopefully my 2 cents can help a bit. . .

Last year I worked at English Village where the kids would come for week long periods for the most part of the year. At that time I noticed that students behaviour were directly related to the economic conditions of the families. The more affluent families could afford to send their kids to numerous Hogwons, because of this the classroom is their natural environment. Where as more rural area or Island students were harder to control. So much so that kids would kick holes in the drywall, fighting each other, I'm sure you know the rest. Though this is a sweeping generalization, these were the patterns I've noticed.

When I arrived at my current school, elementary, a few months ago I found out that last years grade 5 students were extremely rude to last years teachers. Their English level is good enough to know how to use the B-word to the female teachers. Now that they are 6th grade it is hard to believe that they are the same student that I've heard of. There are a few reasons for this. . .

One: their homeroom teachers remind me of Judge Dredd. They are unforgiving and hard on them, 'I am the law!'. So the stricter you are with them the better, because this is what they understand as law. Does this include pinching and jumping jacks, that's for you to decide.

The commands we give the kids are also very important. If you think about the commands that have been drilled into their head from a young age, they are all in their native tongue. When you say those same commands in English, it doesn't have the same impact. They'll know what it means but not understand. Because of this, I've changed my commands to Korean when teaching. Things like, stand up, sit down, be quiet, pay attention. Once they've understand that you mean business they will slowly come around.

Sun Tzu said: 'If the instructions are not clear, if the orders are not obeyed, it is the fault of the general. But if the instructions are clear and the soldiers still do not obey, it is the fault of their officers.'

When asking my aunt who has been teaching for over 40 years what is the secret to teaching? She simply said, 'don't smile for the first 6 months'.

But then again I'm a goof of a teacher and enjoy playing and teasing the kids . . . . .

Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most.

Re: Quitting because of students?
« Reply #28 on: December 27, 2012, 01:28:39 pm »
Have you tried collective punishment?

I recently started at another school and had a particularly rude class that was pretty much paced by 6 boys who took cues from 1 kid.
I learned their names and had the whole class lose their chairs, stand up, miss break, have no game, etc. if one student messed up. Now, they're pretty good about policing each other and not feeding the problem or joining in.
With the hep of my CT I was able to explain that when 1 student acts up, it's disrespectful to the whole class. When 1 students disrupts the study of another student, they're hurting them and getting in their way of learning what they need to pass the test.
A turning point in class was the day I took 15 of their 20 minute break away and took everyone's chair in one felled swoop. Two of the boys were throwing things across the room and one of them muttered, "shut the **** up" to me under his breath. When the class got really upset and asked why, I told them, "(Student's name) has no respect for the class today." That student has since calmed down.

I also give my kids a chance to just opt out. If they're not feeling like studying, I let them move to the back of the class and do work from another subject, doodle, or just sit quietly. I tell them that as long as they're not disrupting me or the other student's learning, I don't care.

Of course, it's not how I like to run the classroom, it's just that when I started, there were only 3 months and 9 class periods left in the semester, so I decided to change the classroom management plan to where I could work best for and with the behaviors that were there, because I didn't really have the time to modify them from the ground up.