Em in Asia!

My Experiences Living and Teaching in South Korea

Coffee and Good Cheer

June11

Ugh 2.9. 2.9. It’s so frustrating teaching them because anything that works well with any other class flops. They’ve been getting better but even their “better” in my class isn’t great. I lectured the class as a whole, talked to some kids individually, and left class feeling really discouraged when I ran into one of my favorite second graders.

I asked how his day was and he responded “FANTASTIC” with a giant grin on his face, then asked me how I was. Something must have shown in my face, because when I answered “oh I’m fine” he could tell something was up.

“What’s wrong, teacher?”
“Oh nothing. I just want to sleep. Mornings are very difficult. I must go drink coffee.”
“I WILL BUY YOU COFFEE.”
“Oh no! You don’t have to buy me coffee.”
“Yes Teacher! I will buy you coffee! Wait a moment please!”

The student thrust his hand into his pockets and then realized that he was wearing his gym uniform, and then hurriedly explained that he could not buy me coffee because he didn’t have any money on him, but that he would buy me machine milk coffee during cleaning period. I assured him that he didn’t have to, but he insisted.

I realize that I haven’t been blogging very much recently. Recently I’ve been slammed with work (both professional and personal), but that doesn’t mean that my life has ceased to be interesting. I’m still having good days and bad days, and more commonly just days with good and bad moments, and though I won’t be here much longer I’ll make renew my effort to write all those moments down, so I don’t forget them when I go.

posted under Cute Stories, School

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안녕하세요! My name is Emily and when I started this blog I had received a 2010 – 2011 F*lbright grant to teach English in South Korea.  I then decided to apply to renew my grant, so I am now staying in Korea until July 2012. This blog is not an official F*lbright Program blog, and the views expressed are my own and not those of the F*lbright Program, the U.S. Department of State or any of its partner organizations.

I graduated from the University of Mary Washington with a degree in Philosophy Pre-Law and Classical Civilizations, and found myself 3 months later teaching English at SGHS. The town that I taught in, SG, is a small town of 12,000 people, an “읍” (eup) rather than a “시” (shi – city), and though it was sometimes hard teaching in such a small town I really enjoyed the unique experience of being the first foreign teacher SGHS had ever had. I lived in the largest part of the county which is significantly bigger (40,000 people) than the town the school is situated in, but is also considered rural by Korean standards.

During my second grant period (2011-2012) I decided to change schools and I currently teach at CPHS which is located in an even smaller town than previously, in Jeollanamdo.

This blog is meant to serve as a reflection not only of being a Native English Speaking teacher in Korea, but also of living as a foreigner in rural Korea.



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