Teacher’s Day – South Korea

Teacher’s Day is one of my favorite Korean holidays.  Its not just the cute notes, buckets of flowers, snacks and other assorted gifts.  Sure those help but what really makes me love Teacher’s Day is the realization of how much value Koreans have for teachers. There is a separate holiday where the entire country devotes itself Read More …

My students picked this picture because…

My Korean co-teacher came up to me and asked if it was okay for the students to show me pictures.  I heard him using my name in class and then speaking Korean for the last 15 minutes but thought nothing of it.  But then they explained in English why they choose each picture specifically for Read More …

Open Class – 4th grade Korean debates

Korean schools have a tradition of hosting an “open class” where parents are invited to watch a lesson.  That day was today!  Luckily my team leaders prepared a great lesson to keep things flowing smoothly across the grade.  We spent two blocks over the last few days teaching our students all about debates. Before getting into Read More …

Korean Teacher’s Day

In Korea May 15th is national Teacher’s Day.  Typically students bring in gifts for all their teachers and write notes.  We were originally supposed to have an assembly recognizing all of us but; due to “recent sad events” that was canceled.  Some of my coworkers were even told “I wanted to bring you flowers but Read More …

2nd interview, 2nd offer, still no letter of release

Today I had  a second interview.  This one at another Hogwon but it appears to be run like an actual school.  The owner speaks English fluently, albeit with a thick accent, but everything went great in the interview. We started off with a quick tour before he brought me into his office.  They have a Read More …

Classroom dyanmics

Our “favorite” student was absent today.  This provided for a completely different classroom dynamic.  I remember how drastic a difference one student’s presence or absence could make in classrooms back home and I discovered how true it is for my ESL class here in Korea too.   Our morning routine went nearly flawlessly and I found Read More …

TGIF!

The week after a long vacation is always tough.  (I know America, you didn’t have any time off but we had a 5 day weekend for Chuseok)  Doesn’t matter your profession and it apparently doesn’t matter where you are on the globe.  I remember dreading going back to work after a long break in the Read More …

Switching to a Korean Phone

Switching to a Korean phone network was was easy, or so I thought.  I checked with Verizon when buying the phone and before I left for Korea, my globally activated Samsung Galaxy Nexus would work here.  I was told all I needed was a new SIM card and I could join another network.  Just to Read More …

On a lighter note

Aside from my school’s financial woes I really am enjoying being here.  My students, albiet unorthodox compared to what I’m used to, are great.  They are fun to work with (and I only have a few “problem children”).  Planning and grading has been pretty straitforward; the school gives us a curiculum I’m teaching my native Read More …

First day on the job

This morning my students walked into the room, saw me, screamed and did their best Brave Sir Robin impression, and bravely ran away.  Okay well maybe only 2 of them turned and ran but it was adorably cute!  They were a bit overwhelmed because the teacher I’m replacing also had a friend visiting so we Read More …