Okay so wayyyy back in time (last June) I made a list of goals that I wanted to achieve in Korea. Well I am going to revisit these goals and grade myself on how well I did. Might be a bit scary but I'll go ahead and do it. So here it goes:
Goal 1: Become a better teacher
Yay! Okay I really do feel like I have become a better teacher. I am more comfortable than ever standing in front of a classroom (or teachers for that matter) and leading and teaching them. I have learned to roll with the many, many punches that come at teachers here in Korea and have learned how to adapt my lesson and incorporate last minute changes as needed. I have also been able to meett difficult challenges (namely non-English speakers and huge class sizes) that teachers encounter and, in my opinion, thrive. Overall, I am very pleased with how I have developed at a teacher here in Korea.
Goal 2: Ready for this? Learn Korean
Alright, well I will be the first to admit that this was pretty much a bomb. Not completely since I did learn to read Korean and my listening is okay, but I am not able to "hold a semi-intelligent conversation" as I had hoped, unless you count introductions. But I am not upset about this because I was able to experience Korean culture and life in many, many other ways.
Goal 3: Learn to cook Korean food
Very sad as I would have loved to learn, but I ended up getting involved in other things and it just slipped out. I did do some cooking classes which was great, but not the extent at which I wanted. However, I gave myself a few points because rather than learning to cook Korean food, I taught Koreans how to cook American food! I was still able to have a great cultural exchange using food and the students that I taught really enjoyed making and eating these dishes.
Goal 4: Practice/Regain long lost photography skills
Alright well it's an ish because my digital cam was a bit kaputt for a while (haven't checked it in a while so maybe it's resurrected?) I did use my film cam for a little bit, but I haven't developed the photos -__- I do however, have a significant of photos on my phone that has never seen the light of this blog so that counts for something too!
Goal 5: Go climbing on real rocks
Okay well I didn't do the type of climbing I was hoping for, I did do some climbing of mountains and such so that counts! :)
Goal 6: Be as open to as many adventures and opportunities as I can
Yes! Complete and utter success here. Love it! Where to start? First off coming to Korea, bungee jumping, eating dog soup, moving to Busan without knowing what to expect (ended up being the best decision of my grant year!), basically never saying no to my host fam and their outings, doing CrossFit, getting haircuts alone, traveling alone, missing my bus in Mokpo and not freaking out, going to saunas, and so many other fantastic adventures that I have shared with you on this blog and facebook.
Goal 7: Live a healthier and more active lifestyle
Again, another huge victory! Whoo! I joined CrossFit Suncheon and CrossFit Busan later on during winter break, and I LOVED it!! I am actually going to the gym (which was probably a huge shock to people at home...it was to me haha!) and kind of naturally eating better and it's great! Huge A for this goal.
Goal 8: Be more neat and tidy
Yeah about that. Maybe slightly better than America, but not much. Actually at school I am definitely more tidy and neat (still organized even if I wasn't!). Oh well. I'll try again next year!
Overall I guess I did pretty well. I completely succeeded in the catergories that are most important like teaching and being open to adventures but of course I floundered in a few others. And even though I didn't necessairly accomplish all the goals I wanted to coming in, I achieved so much more as I did things that I didn't even think about when making this list like becoming more independent, becoming more open-minded, learning a ridiculous amount about Korea (though there are still many, many things I have yet to learn), becoming more tech-savy, and a ton of other stuff.
So I would say it was a successful year.