|Spring is finally starting to come around!!|
This is my first post after a long hiatus! Near the end of last semester, I had hit a routine and I felt I didn't really have much to talk about. Then I went home for the holidays and I was soooo busy. When I returned to South Korea in January, I spent time relaxing, hanging out with friends, and traveling around Korea a bit.
School started again at the beginning of March. The Korean school year runs from March to December, so even though it's our second semester back home, here it's the first semester of a new school year. So I got a whole group of new students. I was actually kind of nervous, but so far they are really great. It's my second-year boys that I want to strangle... -_-
Anyway, so the semester is in full swing. We've had just over a month now, and I think I've finally got the hang of my new schedule. It's pretty much the same as last semester, except this time around I teach an English Conversation Club class on Tuesday nights, so on that day I'm at work from 8am to 8:30pm. It's tiring, but I really love my students, so I don't mind!
Last week, I took part in a really awesome project with my students. One of the other Fulbright teachers saw a project being done in China called "iSpeak," and decided to bring it here and call it "Korean Students Speak." It's a really amazing project where students get to voice their opinions about the things that really matter to them. In the Korean education system, students are basically told to sit down, be quiet, listen to lecture, take notes, take a standardized test, and repeat. They have very little opportunities to express critical thinking, problem solving, or creativity. They also do not get to give their opinions or thoughts on what is going on in their everyday lives. So, first I showed them a preview clip of a documentary about Korean high school education. It points out a lot of the flaws and hardships that students go through (and features another Fulbright teacher!). It's a 20 minute video, but it's completely worth your time, and can be found here.
Then, I gave the students paper and markers, and allowed them to write whatever they wanted on a piece of paper. I had everything from "I want to go home" to "Japan, apologize for comfort women" to "Korean education is too much studying." Then, I edited them and they will soon go on a website with thousands of similar pictures of middle and high school students from all over Korea. The website is: http://koreanstudentsspeak.tumblr.com/. Here are some examples from my students:
|I want to fly, I want to dunk|
|She drew me!|
|I want to work for world peace|
These are just some of the different topics covered by my students. To see all of them, check out the website in a few weeks!
So, I'll try to update a little more in the next few weeks. Only 98 days from today until I touch down on American soil!