teaching in Korea

Candidly Kate: Feeling Seoul Unsettled

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It’s been two and a half weeks since I boarded the KTX and moved my life up to Seoul from Busan.  To say that the transition was a bumpy ride would be an understatement, but I’ve had a lot of support from my parents, my friends back home and in Busan, as well as new friends and colleagues (not to mention superiors) who have helped in many ways (most notably cracking the whip on my landlord to fix my water as well as getting me a sweet new armoire).


Hagwon Hell to Heaven


The 30-Day Reflective Blogging Challenge for Teachers

Today I stumbled across this fantastic website: teachthought.com. While it only offers a few articles specific to ESL teachers, the rest of the content is still very applicable in some way or another!


(The Last) Letter from Korea, June 2014.

Dear Ireland,

If you’re not already aware I’ll be leaving in about a week. I know I’m going on about it a fair bit, but it is what I’ve been building up to for quite a while and it feels appropriate to me to talk about it a lot. Right now, in terms of being in Korea, it doesn’t feel like there is much else I should be talking about. One thing though that I’d like to make clear though is my intentions.

Never at any point have I turned around and said I have to get out of Korea for some abhorrent reason, like the usual tripe you hear about the inadequacies of Korea, Koreans, or indeed the inadequacies of those who cannot accept that this is a very different country to the one which they were raised in. I could go on here, but I won’t.


어린이날: Children’s Day

Since last week, my students have been bugging me to give them free time for the whole period as a gift for them on Children’s Day. Of course, I would not let them waste forty minutes in the classroom just chattering or playing on … Continue reading

어린이날: Children’s Day

IMG_0210Since last week, my students have been bugging me to give them free time for the whole period as a gift for them on 


How to Stretch Your Won and Save Money While Living in Seoul

 

Recently, I quit my job as an English teacher and decided to study Korean full-time as a university student.  I had forgotten what it was like to live without a steady income and it didn't take me long to realize that my habits of frivolous spending had to come to an end. For good.

You see, when you live in Seoul, especially if you're teaching English, it's easy to throw around money and not even realize you're spending it.  Between nights out bar hopping in Hongdae, dinners at upscale restaurants in Itaewon, daily morning coffee at Starbucks, and shopping dates on Garuso-gil, it's not difficult to blow half of one's salary in just a few weeks.  Of course, since most English teachers do not pay rent or car insurance or any other "grown up" bills that they would otherwise pay in their home countries, saving money isn't much of a challenge, either.


If these shoes could talk...



Those are a pair of shoes that I have worn every since I came to Korea. They have been my work shoes, because you change your shoes when you go to work here. I always said to myself I would get a different pair but I never bothered. They have seen me through 1 hagwon, 2 public schools and this last one. These shoes have taken me through a lot of drama and hard times, but also through fun experiences as well. I'm not going to take them back with me, so I suppose they can live here in Korea.

My 5th floor 친구's!

The co-workers on my floor at school asked me to bring my camera yesterday so we could get some group shots of all of us together before I leave Korea.  I obliged of course!  It's not often that Koreans ask to have their pictures taken you know?!  Gotta take advantage when the time comes! The 7 of us have gotten together every morning at 9:30am for the past year, to sip tea or coffee and hang out together before our 2nd classes of the day.  I really love these 6!

Proud of My Work

Before I ever left for Korea I was working at an Insurance Company in San Francisco. My boss was this kooky old Japanese man who lived by a lot of morals and codes. Have you ever watched Mad Men? The office was kind of like that, and even had old type writers.

While he was training me to be an Insurance Agent he would now and then pass on knowledge. This one time he told me that when you do a job you should do it right. You should do such hard work that when it comes time for you to leave (for whatever reason) the company should be sorry to see you go. At that time I was fresh out of college and with a small work history behind me. I tried my best at that job, but know I could have left it better.

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