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It’s the most wonderful time of the year! The days are getting shorter, the air is crisp and icy, and 2016 is quickly coming to a close (already!). There’s something special about winter – something about the change in seasons brings families together and builds a general sense of excitement about the next year and the future in general.
If you’re lucky enough to be in Korea this winter, you’re in for a treat. Winter is the perfect time to visit Korea, because although it may be chilly, Korea is home to a long list of unique and exciting winter festivals that will help you get to know the country and experience a different side of Korean culture than you get to during the other three seasons. Read on for more information on the winter Korean festivals that you should add to your long list of things to do in Korea this winter!
The Garden of the Morning Calm Lighting Festival
Festival Dates: Dec 2, 2016 ~ Mar 26, 2017
Website: The Garden of the Morning Calm
If you’re staying in Seoul this winter, the lighting festival at The Garden of the Morning Calm is definitely worth making the one hour trek for. The garden is as beautiful as the name suggests – home to thousands of plants, the garden is full of beautiful walkways and scenic displays that are lovely to explore no matter what time of year you’re visiting.
The garden kicks up the beauty an additional notch in the winter, because the property is decorated with a seemingly infinite number of sparkling LED lights that make it feel like a true winter wonderland. Bundle up, and bring the whole family out to see the lights at the Garden of the Morning Calm this year – it’s the perfect activity to get everybody in the holiday spirit!
The Pyeongchang Trout Festival
Festival Dates: TBA
Website: Pyeongchang Trout Festival
Are twinkling lights not really your style? Are you looking for a different, more rugged type of activity to get you in the mood for winter? If so, look no further than the Pyeongchung Trout Festival which is centered around – you guessed it – all things trout-related.
The main attraction at this festival is jumping into pools of frigid water to attempt to catch fish with your hands before they get numb (or frostbitten), so you can bet that only the toughest are successful. If bare-handed fish-catching isn’t exactly your style, fear not – there’s also traditional fishing (with poles), snow rafting, and a bunch of additional winter activities that you can do with mittens on.
The Herb Island Light & Fairy Tale Story Festival
Festival Dates: Nov 1 ~ Dec 31, 2016
What do you think of when you think of winter? If Santa, sleigh bells, and thousands of holiday lights are your style, be sure to check out the Light & Fairy Tale Story Festival that happens annually at Pocheon Herb Island. This festival is similar to The Garden of the Morning Calm Lighting Festival in that the focal point is the beautiful, twinkling LED lights, but the Herb Island festival also features hundreds of Santas that gather in Santa’s Village to add an additional holiday element to the festival.
If you don’t get in the holiday spirit until you see the jolly old man in red, this is definitely the festival for you. The island is also home to a number of spas and luxurious getaways, so make a weekend out of it and relax while you ease yourself into winter!
The Homigot Sunrise Festival
(호미곶 한민족 해맞이축전)
Festival Dates: TBA
Website: Homigot Sunrise Festival
Unlike the above festivals that occur over the course of several weeks or months, the famous Homigot Sunrise Festival only occurs on the first of the year, so make sure you mark your calendars! If you didn’t know, Korea is a peninsula, and Homigot is on the eastern-most tip of the peninsula. This helps make the Sunrise Festival as popular as it is – Homigot is the first area on the peninsula to see the sun come up!
If you have a chance to check out this festival, you’ll see a bunch of fun concerts and cultural performances that will make your New Year’s Eve a truly unforgettable experience. Bundle up and make your way out to Homigot and ring in the New Year the right way!
Taebaek Mountain Snow Festival
Festival Dates: TBA
Location: Taebaeksi, Gangwondo
It doesn’t get much more “winter” than a festival centered around the beauty of snow and all that you can do with it. Come check out the magnificent snow sculptures at this celebration of winter – the artists go all out and create intricate scenes using only snow, so they definitely put simple snowmen to shame.
After you’ve scoped out all of the snow creations, there are also plenty of concerts, performances, and opportunities to karaoke occurring throughout the town to keep the celebration going late into the night. Definitely add this festival to your list if you’ve made it through the holidays and you still can’t get enough of winter!
If you have exploring Korea on your to-do list for this winter, use this list of winter Korean festivals to help you get to know a beautiful season in an exciting country. There’s truly something for everybody, so whether you want to be trekking through ice and snow outside or enjoying winter beauty from the comfortable warmth of the indoors, you’ll definitely find what you’re looking for in Korea. Do you have a favorite Korean festival that’s not on the above list? Please let us know in the comments below so we can check it out!
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I have had a bunch of coffee shops sitting in my email cache for a while and thought I would just clear them out. As always, if I end up going to one of these places in the future, I will expand on their comments. If it’s good enough, I will create a separate post. For now, bask in the mass of coffee options in the Jeonpo/Seomyeon area of Busan, South Korea!
JPDdoesROK is a former news editor/writer in New Jersey, USA, who served a one-year tour of duty in Dadaepo/Jangnim, Saha-gu, Busan from February 2013 to February 2014. He is now a teacher in Gimhae.
Thisis the English-language version of an article I just published with Newsweek Japan on Trump’s victory. I know there have been a million of these sorts of diagnostic analyses since he won, so this will be my only one. I will get back to East Asia politics next week.
I guess what worries me the most is how Trump toyed with proto-fascist themes, even if he himself doesn’t believe any of it. As I write in the main essay below: “He flirted heavily with race nationalism, illiberalism (attacking the media; winking to the alt-right), anti-democracy (refusal to recognize defeat; insisting the election system is ‘rigged’), and a cult of personality. That is awfully close to a fascist package.” Trump has now demonstrated that there is a constituency for hard-right strong man politics in the US. He ran as an openly misogynistic, racist, cultish candidate, and millions of Americans just didn’t care and voted for him anyway. This is the most important, and terrifying, revelation of the last 18 months.
No, I am not in hysterics that America is about to collapse. We’ve survived a lot worse in 230 years. I am pretty sure we can survive the Trump administration. He and his family will be epically corrupt, but that won’t bring down the Constitution. There is far too much hyperventilating on the left right now.
But if Trump, or more likely Steven Bannon, can put his stamp on the GOP, the American political landscape will change forever. The Reaganite GOP is disappearing, and in its place will rise a National Front-like nationalist-populist party if Bannon has his way. The US has never seen a blood-and-soil European rightist party. We may look back on Trump as a right-wing turning point even greater than the Goldwater or Reagan presidential campaigns.
The full essay follows the jump.
Donald Trump’s victory is the greatest US presidential upset since Harry Truman won re-election in 1948 against similar predictions. This victory has acted as a lightning strike illuminating the American political landscape to issues traditional media and elites have missed. Here are five initial take-aways:
1. The dramatic outcome does not actually well reflect public opinion.
Trump won because of the unique American quirk of the Electoral College. He lost the popular vote by 1-2%, and the Republicans lost the popular vote in Senate too by an even larger margin. 49% of eligible Americans did not vote. Trump won only half of the rest, around 25% of all voters. The GOP has legally won power, but if it pushes the radical Ryan agenda, that will not reflect the preferences of many Americans.
Given that the same thing happened in 2000, it is probably time to abolish the Electoral College for a straight-up national vote. Were this election a national referendum, as in most democracies, we would be talking today about how poorly Clinton mobilized the Obama coalition, not the possible mainstreaming of Trumpian alt-right politics.
2. There is a potential for proto-fascist politics in the United States.
Trump is not Hitler, but he is closer to Mussolini than many want to admit. He flirted heavily with race nationalism, illiberalism, anti-democracy, and a cult of personality. That is awfully close to a fascist package. Trump traded on white racial paranoia as no major US political figure has ever done. He helped legitimize the alt-right by bringing Steve Bannon onto his campaign, appearing on Alex Jones’ TV show, re-tweeting white rightists, and so on. He promised to imprison his opponent, crack down on journalists, sue his critics, bring back torture, and so on.
Next, he questioned democratic procedure by reserving the right to reject the election outcome, insisting the process was ‘rigged,’ flirting with extra-parliamentary interference (Putin, Assange, rogue FBI agents), and even suggesting at one point that the election be cancelled and the presidency simply given to him. Finally, his campaign took on cultish characteristics, with Trump accurately asserting that he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and not lose votes. No matter what he said, his voters stood by him; he referred to his campaign as a ‘movement’ (another semi-fascist reference); Ann Coulter’s hagiography was entitled In Trump We Trust.
3. Racial ‘political correctness’ has broken out of universities to become a national issue.
Trump got tremendous mileage out of the cultural contempt between social liberals clustered in America’s cities and campuses, and rural nationalists who are clearly unnerved by the left-wing identity politics of race. One obvious way to read Trump’s victory is the mobilization of white identity politics on the right after 40 years of such ethnic politicking on the left in the US, especially at universities. Multiculturalism has long been ‘asymmetric’ in the United States, limited to non-whites, with ‘white pride’ understood as racism. Trump has now breached that wall. Balkan-style ethnic-bloc competition is emerging in the United States.
4. Trade continues to be woefully misunderstood.
Trump capitalized on the decline of manufacturing employment in the US and the perception that trade deals hurt American workers. American politicians continue to find it easier to argue for a bean-counting, zero-sum approach to trade, in which factory jobs in developing countries are a gain at America’s expense. These jobs can be ‘brought back’ through mercantilism.
This, and Trump’s entire trade message, is grossly inaccurate of course. Trade is almost always positive sum; most US manufacturing jobs were eliminated by technology in the same way bank tellers were eliminated by ATMs, or rotary phone makers were eliminated by cell phones. Jobs outsourced by trade cannot realistically be identified one-by-one (the research expense would be gargantuan) and brought back. Most have long since diffused into the global supply chain. Next, manufacturing is actually quite productive in the US. It floats between 10 and 20% of output. Its percentage of working class employment though has collapsed, because those plants are heavily automated now and require engineers and degreed employees. Non-college, high-paying working class jobs are not just not coming back, they are gone forever.
5. The white working class is easily conned.
Trump misled, if not lied, to the many disgruntled downscale whites who voted for him. The Mexican wall will be enormously expensive, hugely controversial, and may not even work. The Muslim ban has already been dropped from his website. No amount of alt-right white nationalism can now prevent the slippage of whites into demographic sub-majority status around mid-century.
Tariffs will not bring back jobs. They will only drive up prices for imports, a burden which will fall most heavily on the poor who benefit most from cheap prices brought on by competition from trade. If Trump’s white working class is the ‘Walmart demographic,’ Trumpism will double the prices of all those cheap Asian imports like blu-ray players, baby-clothes and so on. Middle class voters have the income to absorb these price hikes; Trump’s downscale voters do not.
Trump will almost certainly not abandon his class. He will support the massive Ryan tax cut for the wealthy which will worsen the inequality that fires Trumpism, not reduce it. He will likely support welfare state reductions (Medicaid most obviously) which help downscale voters like his own. He will roll back the post-Great Recession financial regulation (Dodd-Frank, the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau, the rule requiring financial advisors to follow their clients’ best interest) which protects people like Trump voters from the predatory practices that cost so many of them their homes in the Great Recession. Indeed, Trump already made clear what he thought of working class Americans by stiffing them for years as contractors on his worksites or scamming them at Trump University.
My big concern going forward is that the social cleavages Trump starkly revealed and widened, start to overlap into a Red and Blue America that neither understand nor empathize with each other: white, non-college, rural, nationalist, religious vs. diverse, college, urban, cosmopolitan, secular. That looks like Northern Ireland, where multiple cleavages broke the same way, exacerbating everything and raising the prospect of unrest. The future is bluer than Trump’s victory suggests, but in the near-term, we are frighteningly divided.
Despite fighting for several years to be made a naturalized American citizen, Korean-born American adoptee Adam Crapser has been deported from the United States. The now 41 year old was adopted from a South Korean orphanage at the age of three, but after suffering severe child abuse & neglect from two different adoptive families, both sets of abusive parents & the State of Oregon also failed to move forward with the process of granting Crasper US citizenship. As a result, the Korean-born Adam Crapser is fighting to bring attention to his & other cases of children adopted to the US who never officially gained citizenship. Korea FM host Chance Dorland spoke with National Korean American Service & Education Consortium Advocacy Director Emily Kessel & “Adapted” podcast host Kaomi Goetz to learn more about what is being done to help Adam Crapser & other Korean adoptees who have faced hardship as a result of problems in the system.
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The post Korean Adoptee Adam Crapser Deported After 37 Years In United States appeared first on Korea FM.
the great temple bell
About the Author
Matthew William Thivierge has abandoned his PhD studies in Shakespeare and is now currently almost half-way through becoming a tea-master (Japanese,Korean & Chinese tea ceremony). He is a part time Ninjologist with some Jagaek studies (Korean 'ninja') and on occasion views the carrying on of pirates from his balcony mounted telescope.
Life has been busy these days, and of course I have been lazier. But finally I have some time to get back here properly. Anyways, my heartiest gratitude to TOUUFYBITS for nominating for The Entertainer Blogger Award, I can’t express how much happy I am that you chose me, dear!
The rules of the award are :
- Write a post including the award picture
- Nominate twelve other bloggers
- Nominees should answer the same questions as the ones below
- Thank the blogger that nominated you and link their blog
So, here are the questions and my answers:-
Question 1: What do you hope to gain from blogging?
Blogging is a way of expressing myself, the inner and deeper part of me. I want my blog to be that platform where I can raise my voice to the issues I love, or against the issues I hate.
Question 2: What genre of film entertains you the most?
Well I usually love every kinda movie except the dramatic, sad ones or the romantic ones.
Because I believe you are attracted to the things you are deprived of. By the grace of almighty, I have enough love in my life, also unfortunately there are too many parts of my life, where I couldn’t even hold my own sadness. So, I don’t want to watch that kinda movies. I would rather watch some adventurous, horror, fantasy, action movie, which I never experienced in my whole life.
Question 3: Do you consider yourself a writer, and what inspires you?
No, I don’t. I am someone who writes, but I’m no writer. Appreciation from my loved ones inspire me always.
Question 4: Why did you choose your particular WordPress username?
Well, I am girl who is a pure mess! So, “A messy world”, is actually my own messy world. Moreover, here I’ve already shared too many things. Sometimes I write my happy thoughts, sometimes I write about my travel experience, sometimes I write about makeup and reviews, sometimes even cooking recipes. That way, my blog is also kinda messy with different varieties of topics.
Question 5: What is your favourite book, and why does it speak to you?
My favourite book is The Da Vinci Code, by Dan Brown. I have always been a good history student. And I like said before, things I’m deprived of, attracts me the most. Solving a mystery, solving with symbols, the adventures, the thrills, these are things I have always wanted, but I was too afraid to take any risk all my life. So, may be that’s why I try to find them, while reading books or watching movies.
Question 6: What is your favourite song, and why does it speak to you?
My favourite song is “La la la”, by Naughty boy ft. Sam Smith. And why does it speak to ME?
Well, each and every time I hear that song, I feel like someone is saying the things I’ve been trying to say for a long time! So, the lyrics says it all!
“I can’t find your silver lining
I don’t mean to judge
But when you read your speech, it’s tiring
Enough is enough
I’m covering my ears like a kid
When your words mean nothing, I go la la la
I’m turning up the volume when you speak
‘Cause if my heart can’t stop it,
I’ll find a way to block it, I go
La la, la la la la la na na na na na
La la na na, la la la la la na na na na na…”
Question 7: What is your favourite photograph and why does it speak to you?
We took this picture in last year august, 2months after I came here. After our wedding, we were together only for nine days. We had the shortest honeymoon any couple ever had. So, when I came to him, he tried to make it up, taking me to different places in Busan. That day, the sun was crazy, I was sweating like hell, and suddenly, he went on his knees and told me let’s take a picture like this! And that’s my favorite picture of all time.
I even wrote a poem describing this picture in my own language,
“যদি বলি, শুরু হোক তবে একসাথে পথ চলা, অনন্তের পথে, অসীমের দিকে,
তুমি কি আমায় ফিরিয়ে দেবে?
কেবল হাতটাই তো চেয়েছি ভালোবেসে, পৃথিবীটা তো নয়!!”
I am not a very good translator, but if I am gonna give it a try! So here it is in English:
“If I say, let’s start the never-ending eternal journey together,
Will you refuse me?
Not asking for the whole world, I only want your hands with love! “
So, now the nomination part! I nominates these people!
These bloggers are very talented and inspiring writers. Please do visit them, when you have time!
Have a good day people!❤
Top 10 ESL Activities for Listening and Speaking
If you’re looking for some ESL activities for listening and speaking, you’ve come to the right place! We’re going to give a brief description of our 10 favourite ESL activities that focus on two very important skills-listening and speaking. We’ll also include a link to more details about how to set up the ESL activity and use it in your classes.
#1: ESL Surveys
ESL surveys are one of my all-time favourite ESL Activities for listening and speaking. I love them for the following reasons:
- They get students up and out of their seats
- ESL surveys encourage interaction with a wide variety of students
- Surveys help students practice follow-up questions
- They’re fun!
For more details about ESL Surveys and how I use them in my own classroom, you’ll need to check out this post:
#2: Agony Aunt Problem and Advice Activity
Everyone has problems and everyone loves giving advice. Even lower-level ESL or EFL students can understand basic problems and then give some simple advice using the following structures:
“You/He/She should (n’t)….”
For more details, see this post:
#3: Dictogloss- A Classic ESL Activity
Dictogloss is a challening, yet easily adaptable ESL Speaking and Listening Activity that will quickly become one of your favourites. It can be used with just about any level, individually or in groups of up to four students. Listening is necessary, but then you can choose to focus on either writing or speaking. It really is an extremely flexible ESL activity that your students will enjoy.
For more details, check out:
#4: Conversation Starters
Conversation starters for ESL students are a fun way to get the class started off on the right foot. They’re a great warm-up activity because they’ll get your students thinking, talking and enjoying using English. Here are some of my favourite conversation starters:
#5: ESL Trivia
If you want to level up your ESL teaching game, then you’ll need to get some ESL trivia in your life! You can use them to focus on listening by reading the questions, instead of posting them on the PowerPoint. Then, have your students tell you the answers to focus on speaking.
My absolute favourite ESL trivia for teenagers and adults can be found here. It’s the only ESL teaching resource besides my own that I use in my classes every single day:
If you teach kids, you’ll need to check out this book on Amazon:
#6: ESL Listening Lesson
If you want to focus on ESL speaking and listening, a great way to do this is through a listening lesson. Once you get the basics of it down with something like this ESL listening lesson plan template, then you can add in a bunch of other listening and speaking activities.
Check out how I expand this basic listening lesson plan into a full class that includes speaking activities as well:
#7: English Central Videos
Using videos in my classroom is one of my favourite ESL listening and speaking activities. While there are a ton of great resources on YouTube, you’ll have to wade through a ton of stuff to find exactly what you’re looking for. That’s why I like using English Central. There are so many good ones and not all of the junk. Plus, they’re organized by level and topic so it’ll be easy for you to find what you’re looking for. Saving time when lesson planning? Love it!
#8: Running Dictation
Running dictation is another classic ESL Activity. This one is particularly good because it uses all 4 skills-speaking, listening, reading and writing. It’s challenging, easily adaptable to just about any age or level. It also gets students up and out of their seats and helps you get some energy back into your classroom.
#9: Role-Plays for ESL Students
One of my favourite ways to finish off a unit for lower-level students is with a role-play. They’re fun, encourage a bit of creativity and can be easily adapted by adding, or removing the amount of mandatory text that students must use. You can also use them for just about any topic you can imagine!
Check out: How I Use ESL Role-Plays in my Classroom
#10: Infographic Presentations
If you have higher-level students and want to challenge them, try out this task-based learning activity. Students have to make an infographic presentation and then present it to the class. It involves all 4 skills and the results are always very interesting! I thoroughly enjoy the class where students present their findings.
Did you enjoy our Top 10 ESL Listening and Speaking Activities? We hope so! Please leave a comment below and tell us your favourite listening and speaking activity for ESL or EFL students.
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