Monday, May 20, 2013

The Island Getaway and My First Bomb

  • We had a three-day weekend this week thanks to Buddha's B-day falling on a Friday!  So a few friends and I (well really them) organized a trip to a small island off of one of my fave cities Mokpo.  The name of the island is 비근도 and it was awesome!
  • We basically just rented out a small pension/house and chilled for 3 days.  It was so great to get to see the ocean and a whole new place in Korea.  Korea in generally is a beautiful, scenic country, but this island gave me the most beautiful views I have EVER seen!  It was fantastic!!  Instead of just describing them, I'll show you some pics instead.  They really don't do it justice, but it's the best that I got!

  • So I went with Di, Mina, Hana, Jason, and Mary (all Jeolla ETAs! Whoo!) and we did some hiking/rock climbing, swimming (even though it was freezing), cooking, card game playin, riding in a truck-ing, and just chilling enjoying each other's company and the splendor of the island.  It was definitely one of the best weekends I have had in Korea thus far!
  • Now the Bomb.  So last week, I tried to do a grocery shopping simulation lesson.  We just did a money and big numbers lesson and now I figured a good transition to build off of that would be shopping.  So I put the most prep into any lesson I have ever done in my short, but robust teaching career.  I would say at least a good 12 hours when you added it all up.  And the first class I did it with was okay.  The actual "shopping" went pretty well (but I had to take a lot of money away from students since they were speaking Korean) but the clean-up/organization part did not go so well.  And, of course, this was the day I had 4 classes in a row.
  • I managed to get everything to a decent presentation, but I now had to teach the class of second graders.  38 second graders.  This was coming from the class of 22 first graders where the lesson was okay.  I was a bit worried.  And, as I could have easily predicted, it was a diaster.  They hardly spoke English, they stole from each other, they bought too much, and the clean-up was essentially non-existent.  Ugh.  So I didn't even bother to try it with the next Grade 2 class.  I just used a filler Konglish lesson instead.  I tried again with the advanced 1st graders 4th period, but it again was only okay and even a little worse than 1st period.
  • I was ready to scrap the lesson completely and play The Price Is Right on Monday, but my co-teacher convinced me that I should give it another shot.  After as much revision and simplification to it as I could, I tried it again with 2nd and 1st.  2nd grade was probably the worst.  The students just didn't listen well and it was the day when my co-teacher didn't show up so that didn't help either.  When I tried to get them to clean up, only 6 of the teams actually did and the rest just sat there and stared at me or slept.  I was finally just done with this lesson and I took the rest of the time in class just to do it myself.  I gave it one more shot with the smaller 1st grade class and it went fairly well, but again, clean-up was still a bit messy.  And this was done with all of the directions given to them in Korean by the co-teacher.  If they couldn't get it right in Korean, than there was no way it was going to happen in English.  I begrudingly came to the realization that the lesson bombed.
  • It is a bit frustrating since I spent so much time planning and prepping it and it worked well in other ETA schools, but I guess I overestimated my student's abilities.  Overall, they have been doing better this semester than last, but I guess I forgot that the majority of them are pretty low-level still.  Oi.  Well I'm planning on posting it on the ETA forum so maybe other teachers could use it so it doesn't completely go to waste but I definitely cannot do it again.  At least all of the classes will be on the same page when we start up again next week becaussssssse I have a mini-vacation!
  • Yes!  My students are all going on a field trip so there will not be any classes for me.  I mentioned some time ago that my students were going to Jeju Island and some military base, but I couldn't go with them due to funding.  While I am bummed I can't go, I am excited to use my 4-day vaca!  I will be going to Busan tomorrow to visit some old PNU and CrossFit Busan friends.  I might stay the night, but I'm not sure.  Probably not, but again who knows?  Then on Thursday (possibly Wed night), I am planning on going to Mokpo (again haha) to visit my pal Ammy's middle school.  She invited me to come last time I was there and now I finally have a chance!  I've been really wanting to go to another school, but it just hasn't been able to happen yet so I'm excited that it is going to!
Alright that's it.  going to CrossFit later and I have to nurse my sunburn.  I got burnt as usual, but hopefully it will be the last one of the year...

1 comment:

  1. Bummer on the Bomb. But normally I learn the most from my bombs and know what signs to look for to not repeat the bomb. Never know until you try something - sometimes it works, sometimes not.
    The weekend sounded great and great pics. Have fun in Busan! Remember the sun screen :)