While some are on vacation, we in the land of the falling yen are still slaving away, some of us until the beginning of August, to ensure the students get their money’s worth of 15 classes per semester. I’ve been keeping a log of how many hours I spend on non-class work. Being a salaried worker, I get paid by the month for a set number of “hours” (actually 90-minute class-periods, called “koma” in Japanese) per month. This is supposed to cover preparation, research and administrative work, but no record or count is kept of that.
The result showed me I spend a lot of time on preparation and class paperwork, and also much time on the Internet doing email, reading and writing blogs. Something has to go. I can’t maintain 12-hour days indefinitely.
I’ve reduced class preparation time by systemizing more of what I do, cutting inessentials, having students correct their own quizzes, etc.
I’ve cut to almost zero my reading of news blogs and news sites.
I’ve reduced email to just once a day (and none at weekends).
This morning, I just spent 3 hours online, but it was with a specific goal or task in mind.