What's it like for a foreign teacher in Thailand at this time of year?
Some companies organize a Christmas party, some companies don't. Some schools pay teachers early. Some teachers get the chance to get away for a holiday whilst others might have to work. It can be a strange old time.
Surely a foreign teacher doesn't have to work on the 25th December!
For some reason I had just presumed Christmas Day would be a day off for foreign teachers. It was only around three weeks before the big day that I was reminded that I was expected to be at work.
Memorable teachers and playing Father Christmas
I had looked forward to becoming a teacher for years and the thought had never crossed my mind that this particular job would be considered anything but decent and respectable. How wrong I was.
Twelve months at a Thai government school
Today I am celebrating my first year of teaching at a government school in rural Thailand. I thought I'd share some of the interesting idiosyncrasies within the school where I currently work.
A relatively carefree couple of weeks at school
The Foreign Language Department put on a nice 2-hour long show for the entire school the Thursday before Christmas. I'm not sure why this date was chosen instead of Friday, but I do know that during Christmas itself, midterms were in session. It was quite nice, and I think the kids generally enjoyed it. But then again, who doesn't enjoy getting to miss two hours of class first thing in the morning?
spending Christmas in Thailand
I think teachers are divided into two camps at this time of year. Those who say 'bah humbug' and continue working as usual, and those who make a token effort to recreate the festive spirit in the comfort of their apartments - as difficult as that may be. Some might even be lucky enough to find the time and the money to escape to the beach for a few days. After years of treating December 25th as 'just another day' I now find myself with a house and a wife and I do everything possible to recreate some of the memories from those childhood Christmasses.
Seasons greetings to you all
It wouldn't be the same without the Primary school Nativity Play. Due to unknown deadlines this wasn't completed in time for last week's column. Better late than never.