I realized recently that while I’ve blogged extensively about moving to Spain to do the auxiliares program, I haven’t discussed the day to day aspects of the job very much. To remedy that, here’s a description of my day to day responsibilities at my school.
8:00AM- Leave for work on the Metro or the Cercanías commuter train. I could leave a little later, but I like having a certain amount of buffer time. Madrid’s public transport is great but sometimes the train will stop before it reaches the station for no reason.
9:15AM- Arrive to work in the north of Madrid, put my lunch in the fridge and make sure everything’s ready for the day.
9:30AM- The bell rings, signaling the beginning of the day. I go and collect the class outside with the teacher and take them up to the classroom
10:15AM- Change to my next class.
11:00AM- Change to my third class of the day.
11:45AM- Break time. We have a 30 minute break at this time, at which the school provides coffee, orange juice, a sweet snack and a savory one. This could be tortilla, churros, jamón, cookies, cake or whatever other delicious food has been cooked up for the day.
12:15PM- Collect the students from the playground and take them to their next class.
1:00PM- Lunchtime. We have a two hour lunch break, but the teachers’ room for lunch isn’t open to us until 2:00PM.
3:00PM- Go back to the playground to collect the children in the next class.
3:45PM- Change to my next class.
4:30- The end of the school day!
In class, my job is to assist in whatever way the teacher would like. In some classes, I help lead the students through correcting their homework and explaining the lesson of the day. In others, I walk around the classroom and see if students are on task or if they need assistance. Some days there is more for me to do than others, but every day and in every class it’s my job to assist the teacher in explaining and modeling correct English usage. Some days I get a little confused because of the differences between British and American English but generally the students don’t have questions that I’m unable to answer.
Overall, I think that people’s experiences in this program vary widely by which school they’re in and which teachers they’re paired with. At my school I feel I’m allowed to contribute a lot to my students’ learning and I’m never bored while helping in a class.