Happy Holidays!

On Thanksgiving we had a party with the students. The 6 & 7 year olds made Pilgrim hats and the 5 year olds made Native American head bands. They had a lot of fun making the crafts and eating snacks.






For Christmas the 7 year olds made a hand print tree and ornaments. We had a lot of fun making it, and they loved the glitter glue I bought for them to use!













On December 21st, a Christian Korean organization that had been coming once a week to teach Bible came and had a Christmas party with the students. 






A fun conversation with students

Yesterday I had a conversation with one of my 7-year-old students, Eileen, who is really only 6 in American age. We were in MeySen Station class, and the students were supposed to copy a short song from the white board and then draw and color bees and a beehive.

Eileen: Mrs. Rachel, I can’t write it. It’s too hard.

Me: Yes, you can. Look you already wrote “‘The Beehive’ and ‘Here'”

Eileen: sigh I don’t want to write. It’s too long.

Me: That’s ok. Do you want to color this (a Bible coloring page)?

Eileen: Yes! I want to look at this (talking about the other coloring pages in my hand)!

Me: Ok.

Eileen: A donkey!

I don’t remember exactly what we talked about… There was a picture of Jesus riding a donkey, Jesus with the Disciples at the last supper, Peter and a rooster, Jesus carrying the cross, a Centurion looking at the three crosses, and an angel on the empty tomb. Briefly and as simply as I could, I explained the pictures and asked her what she saw. Then Eileen started coloring one of them.

Sometime during the class Eileen looked at me and said, “Whoa! Your eyes! One is green and one is blue!” The other girl in the class said “Mine are brown!” Eileen asked “What color are mine?” I told her brown, and she asked “Why your eyes like that?” I can’t remember how she said it exactly but basically she asked me if all white people have one blue eye and one green eye. I told her “No, I’m different. Most people have 2 blue eyes or 2 green eyes.

One of the other students finished his writing/drawing assignment so I gave him the picture of Peter and the rooster, and after talking about the picture, he pointed out “Mr. Peter and Peter!” And in broken English he reminded me that his name was Peter in the beginning of the school year before his mom changed it. So I told the students that Mr. Peter’s father is Peter too, and they were surprised. One student said “so many Peters!”

A few minutes later, Eileen asked me “Mrs. Rachel, do you mother?” I asked her (to make sure I understood what she was saying), “Do I have a mother?” She said yes, and I said yes back. She then asked me, “Where is she?” I told her, “She’s in the United States.” She then asked me, “Then why you come here?” I said, “To teach you!” And then she giggled and went back to coloring 🙂

1st Field Trip

On Friday we went with the kindergartners on their first field trip. The trip was originally supposed to be the second Friday in April, but it was postponed because our boss was worried about radiation. The calendar also said we were going to a playground, but we ended up going to a garden. It was a lot of fun. There were animals at the gardens too, so we got to ask the kids “What do you see?” And they would answer “rabbits, sheep, birds, etc.” There were statues that the kids enjoyed climbing on too. We stopped for pictures a lot, and the kids had fun posing with the different statues. For the most part things weren’t very organized, but it didn’t help that our boss’s wife hurt her back two days before the field trip so she couldn’t go. She’ll be in the hospital for the next week, so this next week will be busier than usual for us. Anyways, I would have preferred that the field trip was more organized that the kids knew that they shouldn’t run off and that they should walk in a line like the other students that were visiting… But we didn’t lose anyone so that’s what counts right?

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because today wasn’t bad enough

i woke up this morning knowing i would have a headache by the end of the day because my neck and back were stiff and sore. we got to school and one of the students was already there. apparently his parents had to drop him off early and they were ok with him waiting at the door to the school by himself. granted we are on the second floor so he was at least in the building out of sight from strangers… and this is korea, but still… i don’t think it’s the best idea to leave a six year old by himself.

english with the 5* year olds went ok. one of the 5* year olds can’t sit for more than two seconds so he distracts the other students. my boss’s wife was sitting in on the classes but she is trying to get the kids used to just being with me… at least they are staying in the room now. for the first week of school or so they would run after her… scary white person ahhhh!

the boy that can’t sit still used to cry a lot in the beginning of the school year because he missed his mom/grandma… he’d never been to daycare or school before. i’m pretty sure he was scared of me for the first few weeks, but he’s warming up to me. yesterday and today i built a truck for him with some lokko blocks and he was pretty happy about it. i’m not sure if he has figured out that i don’t speak or understand korean though.

pe class with the 5* olds happened as usual… in other words it didn’t. inspiring a 5* old to play group games… not a chance. last class of the day… phonics… two of the kids were great for most of the class but the other two had other plans.

i rode the van with the kids as they were being dropped off. peter and i take turns. i extremely dislike riding the van. riding in a car with the driver always pumping the gas… it’s like being on a roller coaster for 30 minutes. my headache made me feel more nauseous than usual i think. after the van ride i went home for a bit before the afternoon classes began. i went back with peter around 3:30pm because i wasn’t sure when i was supposed to teach… the schedule keeps changing.

my class with the elementary students went ok. maybe i’m just getting used to telling them to speak english, sit down, be nice, don’t do that… at the end of class one of the boy’s pokemon cards fell out of his pocket so he and one of the girls were cleaning them up instead of participating in one of the action activities… well the boss’s wife came in and saw they weren’t participating and made them go to the office. after class i saw them in the office. the girl was crying and wailing… i asked my boss’s wife what she said to them and she said that she told them that they need to behave better or they won’t be able to move on to the next level. i probably would be freaking out too if i were her… being left behind would be embarrassing and she would probably be in a lot of trouble at home too. my boss’s wife then told me that i need to give my students a test… which is exactly opposite of what she wanted before.

so after school we went to get groceries and i was pretty miserable because of my headache. we finally finished, and the cashier scanned all of our stuff, i handed her my debit card to pay, and she started talking in korean… uh oh somethings not right. she said “error… nonghyup… error” ok… nonghyup is our bank so we had no clue why there was an error or if it was just my card. i was thinking i did get paid last month right? so peter tried to hand her his card which is also nonghyup but she said “no nonghyup error” so we were like great what do we now? peter called our boss’s wife and the cashier talked to her and then gave us the phone back. anyways so all nh bank accounts are not available today because of some error. our boss actually came to the store and paid for our groceries. hopefully our bank account will be unfrozen tomorrow so we can pay him back. he also told us that that store is too expensive and that he would take us to lotte mart whenever we wanted to go!

*disclaimer: 5 years old in korean age is actually 3-4 years old in american age.