Em in Asia!

My Experiences Living and Teaching in South Korea

April25

It is raining like the dickens outside (… what does that even mean? Charles Dickens? Why are intense things associated with Dickens? Did the person who coined this even READ Great Expectations?) and students have midterms next week. It’s a weird mix of crazy and exhausted, and damp. This morning I woke up at 5 am because the shutters in my apartment building’s hallway kept banging open and shut. It’s only 10:50 and I can already tell it’s going to be a strange day.

I pointed out the window and asked my advanced 1st grade students how they would describe this weather in Korean. Interestingly enough, this seemed to stump them. After class a student came up to me with a post-it note:

Storm

– 폭풍우: 폭풍 (violent wind) + 폭우 (violent rain). * 폭: (Chinese) violent; 풍: (Chinese) wind; 우: (Chinese) wind*
– 비바람: rain (비) + wind (바람)
– 거친 (adjective) 날씨: turbulent weather. (거칠다: V, Be rough)

 

While students are self-studying I’ve been writing in my Korean language diary, but unfortunately when it rains that is all I can really think about, so my entry today is only about rain. I’m tempted to go up to students that are goofing off instead of studying and asking them grammar questions and making them correct my entry, but then they might see some of my weirder entries (or the ones where I talk about them), so I’ll probably just leave it be.

Anyway, onward to third period, where I’ll be teaching teenage boys right after they’ve finished an English listening test who’ve been cooped up inside during their breaks because of the rain. Let the games begin.

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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.