Owen Daniel

Marketing Consultant; Events Manager;

Journalist & Author; Web Developer & SEO Specialist


The Man with the Red Pen

So after slogging my guts out, kinda – barely a month into my new job – we’ve just been treated to a week long national holiday here in China.

The National Day celebrations mark the start of the People’s Republic of China, founded back in 1949, and the entire country gets a week’s holiday to relax and enjoy the festivities….

So after an intense three full days of classes at school, totalling a mammoth 24 hours of entertainment and teaching – we were surely due some serious down time.

Here our average working week, in terms of classroom hours, normally sits around 18-20 hours plus lesson planning time on top of that. It’s not easy you know.

Compare this to the 80-100 hours weekly we were putting in for Ministry of Sound and Hed Kandi Egypt; I certainly love the more balanced work/life mix here in China – although naturally I miss the ‘good old days in t’Egypt’.

Over the last few weeks three of my classes have all had tests, both written and oral, and nothing makes you feel more like a teacher than being the man with the red pen! A cunning title inspired by French house music guru Laurent Garnier's 'Man with the Red Face' which I've included here for those who don't know...

After some hardcore reviewing the tests get underway, I summon one student at a time to follow me to the office where I do the oral tests as the rest continue the written test under supervision in the classroom.

Some of the kids were really nervous bless them, they all did so well though and I’m very proud of them all. Not that I can take much, if any, credit for their great results – it was all down to my predecessor Peter Webb. He’s a great teacher and a tough act to follow, try as I might.

Marking the tests was a really strange experience at first too. With my own history of way-below average test results, the whole thing felt somewhat ironic. I’d even add an ‘excellent/well done/very good’ scribble on the top!

Some star pupils got 100% in both written and oral! Boom! I felt like a proud parent.


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