Hello four readers 🙂
Just wanted to post a random hello. I have been jotting notes down in my phone lately about things that amuze/amaze/and just down right confuse the shit out of me about Korea. Life in general makes absolutely no sense. Me being here does, but aside from that.
I came to Korea to expand my love and knowledge of Asian culture. 9 out of 10 days, I do love it here. With that being said, it is almost month 8 of my stay. Probably the first 5-6 months I would have began this post with ‘I want to leave, I hate Korea, especially my Boss.’
Adjusting to a non-English speaking culture has been a rough yet life changing experience. I know that those are generally the words that people use to describe this experience, but well, they are quite fitting.
Yesterday, I was asked to attend a meeting at school. The teachers have meetings every Tuesday at 5pm. Since all of my coworkers are Korea, the meetings, therefore, are in Korean. My boss and head teacher do not speak a lick of English. Like talking to my most basic 6 year old students. How are you? I am 7 years old type answers. Amusing, yet sad. How do you own a hagwon that encourages English, yet you yourself cannot and do not care to learn even a fraction of the language.
Who am I to say though, I came to Korea and lasted 3 weeks in my Basic Korean Language course through a language class that was free. Hey, Saturday morning 9 am, just isn’t my thing.
Her role in this school reminds me a little bit of the landlord I had in college. I remember that when I was first looking for apartments, friends and peers of mine would tell me to be careful when looking for a place and that landlords are often called ‘cash cows.’ She puts on the biggest smile, changes her voice completely (my coworkers and I have fun immitating this), and even changing her appearance to impress parents and community members that walk through haba doors.
Back to the meeting, sorry I am a rambler, and non-editor of this blog (no one is, cantcha tell). Excuse the laziness.
Nuri, is my coworker. She interviewed me and I have probably mentioned her and her relationship to me in earlier posts. She is a nice person, but basically does not give me the time of day, and couldn’t give a shit less if I was happy, adapting well, etc to Korea, which is often a huge role of having a foreign teacher come to this country fresh off the boat.
Nuri ‘Kelly we will have a meeting tomorrow discussing the reviews from Tim, it is at 5pm and you should attend.’
Kelly ‘Okay sounds good.’
Tim is the trainer for the cirriculum that I teach. He was a very nice guy and came to observe my class and style of teaching right in the middle of practicing for the parent observations. He was really helpful and gave lots of good advice for me and my job. I had to teach the rehearsed class that we were practicing for the parents, and found it quite amusing the things that he had to say.
The parents class was supposed to be all fun and games for the students and to show the parents that the students were well engaged and totally super fantasically over joyed, emphasis on SMILE! It was pathetic. We were told not to incoorporate phonics (a normal part of our lesson) because it was infact boooorrriiinggg. Go figure. Learn English, not so much fun, but memorize English is fun. Woo.
So lovely trainer Tim came back with some really good and helpful advice. I guess he had a talk with the boss also, basically telling us to change the entire plan we had for our cirriculum for the next 4 months until the end of the school year. The 5 year old class for instance should only be using the toddler cd, and not doing the structured cirriculum, they’ve been doing for the past 8 months, and are already on level 4. It’s basically memorization and not really learning much of anything.
Anyway after sitting through 40 minutes of a Korean meeting, I asked to leave. They gave me my evaluation and that was that.
4 months and counting 🙂 I think I can I think I can.
My mom (hi mom!) recently asked me what I think about teaching as a career. Basically, I think this experience is not something even remotely close to base the career of teaching after. I am not a real teacher, most days. I am a puppeteer. I enjoy it, but it is exhausting. I have a private lesson Thursday evenings and teach two 10-11 year old girls. They are really a fresh perspective of what teaching could be like. I can have a real conversation and correct easy English skills of basic knowledge.
On that note, enjoy the blog as it is.
I will try and post something more interesting soon. ❤ xo