Em in Asia!

My Experiences Living and Teaching in South Korea

Ed vs Ing


Korean learners of English as a foreign language tend to have trouble with the distinction between “ed” and “ing.”

“Oh teacher, I am interesting!”
“Yes, yes you are.”

CP is pretty rural. In fact, though geographically I’m pretty close to Gwangju, I can’t go out late at night because the last bus leaves from Gwangju at around 10:15, which means that if I’m downtown with friends like I was last Saturday, I have to leave around 9:30 if I want to make it back home. If I miss that bus, it’s actually cheaper to spend the night in Gwangju than to take a cab.

I didn’t particularly want to leave, but I hadn’t been feeling too well and I knew that I wouldn’t want to stay out as late as everyone else, nor did I have a place to stay, so I decided to call it quits and leave downtown right as everyone was getting in. I took the bus to 서방 시장 (Seobang Market – the transfer point that is closest to downtown) to wait for my CP bus, and then I hear-


Turns out it was one of my students, who apparently goes to Gwangju every Saturday. After she finishes supplemental classes at school she buses into the city and goes to an art academy where she paints all day, and then takes the last bus back to CP.

“Teacher, what are you doing?”
“Oh, I’m going home. I went to a birthday party but I must take the last bus back to CP, so I had to leave early.”
“Oh,” she pauses, “I think you must be very boring.”

posted under Rural

Email will not be published

Website example

Your Comment:

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.