Imagine Winter Camp

I had the pleasure of creating an English camp program for my favorite grade 6 students at Moonhye elementary school.  I knew that teaching them about phrases such as “Can you join us,” or “May I help you,” would not make for an exciting winter camp.  I knew these guys were passionate about music and so am I, so I decided to teach them about The Beatles and the theme of the camp was “Imagine.” More

Do You Know South Korea?

A great composition of images, photography and footage of South Korea by David Dutton.  If you have a minute, please watch!

 “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.”

Korean Christmas #2

Last Friday,  I looked more of a porter than teacher when I walked into school.  I came to school with my buddy (my travel pack) stuffed with ski gear and a roller carrier bag filled with xmas goodies, food and presents.  I spent the day not teaching, but baking pumpkin bread in our English office and listening to Christmas music since classes were canceled because it was the last day of the semester.  I dressed up as Rudolph and visited the classrooms and demanded the children say “Merry Christmas” before diving into the candy bag and a “thank you” after.  Since our school has over 20 teachers, I left a warm loaf of pumpkin bread for the teachers to enjoy.

As I was leaving school to get on the bus to Seoul, I wanted to yell down the halls More

Wings on the Horizon

Ha Na and ILast week, as I was approaching one of my rural schools,Nae Dae elementary, in the sleepy town of….Nae Dae, multiple flocks of birds soared over my head like missiles in the sky.  They caught my attention and literally made me stop in my tracks.  Most shop owners still soundly sleeping with no rush to wake up for the crowds of customers, just waiting for the doors to open.  The canned and dry goods sit on the local corner shop shelf dusty and expired, while the fresh produce picked daily from the surrounding farms sit in personalized bins for their local owner, covered in dirt and soil.  The only ones who are awake were the birds flying overhead and the soldiers in the distance marching through the rice paddies resembling ants in a line.  Besides the occasional testing of bombs down the road, the world seemed harmonious and gentle.

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My bags are packed…

…and I’m ready to go.  But…theres no jetplane just yet! Only… 30 days to go until India!  I guess I jumped the gun a little, but at least I’ll be prepared!  As the last 2 weeks of teaching lie ahead and the next 4 weekends booked, all I can think about is having a pack on my back and a map in my hands.  I had saved up a chunk of money to buy myself a brand spanking new travel pack as my Christmas gift to myself and researched for days to find the perfect one.  But, as I was rummaging through my closet for Christmas decorations to properly get myself into the holiday spirit, my good ol’ EMS, grey and black backpack, fell on to the floor in front of me.  I stood there for a minute about to stuff it back into my closet, like a grown up child does to his beloved first stuffed animal, but all of the sudden felt a gravitational pull towards the dirty, ugly, worn out, malodorous bag.  How could I have left him on the shelf, alone and abandoned after so many memories together?  I felt awful and…guilty. More

Cheorwon Chamber Ensemble

Paul, my multi-talented co-teacher, put together a creative group concert, involving musicians from all around Cheorwon including solos by Claire and Scott, a peice by some of my students, accapella groups, The CLATT (Claire/England + Scott/Texas + Matt/California) and many more.  Since Paul wanted this to be a multi-cultural performance, he suggested that I be the MC for the evening and teamed me up with a Korean teacher from the next town over, Ji Eun and I was honored to support Paul, the CCE and my friends.  Although I do not enjoy talking in front of big crowds, the spotlight blinded me on the night of the performance,  leading to the conclusion that there was no audience which eased my nerves a bit!  The only thing I could see were my students in the front row with their big smiles draped across their faces holding up encouraging signs that read”We love you teacher” I am once again amazed by my talented and gifted friends who rocked the socks off the audience and made the night so special by being a part of the CCE!

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Dancing Queen

I am very proud of my 3rd and 4th grade students who worked so hard on perfecting their performance of ABBA’s “Dancing Queen”.  Early morning’s 3 days a week since the beginning of October consisted of teaching and learning the lyrics to DQ and choreographing dance moves to “oo” and “ah” the audience.  But, I can safely say that I never want to listen to ABBA ever again after having “Dancing Queen” stuck in my head for two months straight.  I would catch myself singing it in the shower, while doing the dishes, and even busted out some of the dance moves in front of the mirror….. don’t tell me you’ve never done that!  What I am especially amazed by is how we got through this considering the language barrier.  These girls especially impressed me as they used English each morning to communicate with me, without a Korean teacher translating!  I hosted a Dancing Queen party to show my appreciation for their hard work and to enjoy one last time together as a drama group.

I am so proud of their hard work and effort which made for a truly amazing performance!!!!

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“Dance as if no one is watching,

Sing as if no one were listening

and live everyday as if it were your last.”

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