I wrote about how teaching is degrading in Air in the Paragraph Line. I was going to do a post here about it, but since the theme of the latest issue is work, it gave me an opportunity to vent there, and to use many more words.
I pretty much quit pursuing teaching as a career in 2000 after an awful experience, but I occasionally taught a class or a private student once in a while. But 2000 was the last time I taught in a school. Well, I'm returning to teaching a class in a school on the southwest side of the city, and so far, things don't seem so bad. At least from an administration and co-worker standpoint. But I'll see next week when I step into the classroom.
One co-worker is totally into languages: he's from Iran, so he speaks Farsi and also speaks English totally fluently. I first met him in a Chinese class we briefly took, where he would write the Chinese words in phonetic Farsi. I remember looking at his notebook and asking him what the script was above the Chinese ones, and he said exitedly, "Farsi--it's easier to understand the pronunciation." Very cool, indeed. He could also say hello in several languages, and had a curiosity that is rare, especially in people his age (he's closer or beyond 60).
Recently, I saw him speaking with some Mexican people in Spanish, and when I asked him where he learned it, he said he learned it on the job--without any books. When I complimented him on his language abilities, he said "I love languages." Right on! I don't meet many people who enthusiastically say that.
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