EPIK

Document Your Life – October 2013

If you haven’t checked it out, Rachel started posting videos on her vlog channel called VlogofRachel! This is her first video in a “Document Your Life” series, a project started by fellow youtuber Lauren Hannah. You can read more about the project here!



The post Document Your Life – October 2013 appeared first on Evan and Rachel.


Seoul Search: Part I

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So I’m back in Daegu after a lengthy Chuseok (Thanksgiving) break. I had a few days off of school so I decided to pay a visit to Seoul, the destination that almost everyone knows about in Korea.


Kindness in Korea

Hi all, I hope things are going well. I wanted to write a post today about how completely floored I am that a people as kind as Koreans exist.

You remember that post I wrote about that constant scowl I carry to ward off strangers? Well, that seemed to have vanished on its own. From greeting all of the teachers every morning to saying “hi!” to every student that enthusiastically calls my name in the hallways, the amount of time I now spend smiling has already outweighed the whole amount I did last year. Seriously.


Say What?! Episode 6: Maybe=Do it?

This week I posted a poll asking new EPIK teachers what topic they would like to see me cover in a Say What?! video. This topic would have been my last choice, just because it seemed to be the hardest to talk about. But I’m really glad the new teachers voted for this topic, because usually the hardest things to talk about are the most important! And this is a VERY important thing to understand in order to be happy here.


Korean and Guest English Teachers Working Together Webcast


ELT Live:  Korean and Guest English Teachers Working Together
September 5, 2013


 Participants
Xena Dayoung Kim's profile photo
Mar Hee Jeon's profile photo
Evan Rachel's profile photo
Samantha Xol's profile photo
Jeff Lebow's profile photo
DayoungMarHeeMinjeeMinjiRachelSamanthaJeff



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Korean Public School teachers and  Guest English Teachers discuss cultural issues, teaching tips, and basic survival skills for surviving and thriving in school. 
 


The Ahjumma Made Me Stay

When my co-teacher opened the door to my apartment, I don’t know what I was expecting. Here, around the corner of the middle school that i work at, in a small building three floors up. When she opened the door, I thought that I really had the worst luck in the world.

I was greeted by a horrible mildew smell and absolute filth. The place seemed like it had been used by four people and then ditched for five years. The floors were caked with dust. The sheets smelled bad. The kitchen was covered in an ungodly amount of food residue and spilled sugar. Laundry room reeked. The place was awful.


Tuned Out

Ahh, middle school. Such an awkward phase, where we come up with gimmicks to make ourselves cool. We are at the stage of forming an identity – one that will carry us though the travails of puberty. Some are drawn to the “class clown” identity. For me, I remember having a single strand of hair on one side of my face because I thought it was hella cool. I also said “ya’ll” a lot. Anyway…after my first day of teaching middle schoolers I am keenly reminded of the phase, but this time I’m on the other side of the podium.

So I actually surprised myself when I taught today. I tend to get anxious delivering presentations to my peers but I was really at ease in the classroom. I projected well, didn’t stumble over words, planned well, and generally enjoyed my time teaching today. That being said, the first class of the day that I taught was pretty rough.


Friends with Strangers – Orientation

On arriving at Incheon Airport, after going through immigration and picking up way, way too much luggage, you find yourself looking around for other lost (foreign) souls with equally as much luggage. We are all going to be in Korea for a year, no way we could stuff our belongings into just one bag. The comforts of home require space and a herculean effort to lift, roll and drag around the things that will be our lives for a long time. It’s worth the effort.

Before you have the chance to pass out on the bus to Jeonju, you look outside and see an expanse of sea and greenery cut by clean steel. I remember thinking that I really am 7000 miles from home. But in a cool, awesome,”woah, wth” kind of way.


A Guide to Understanding Korean (School) Culture for Guest English Teachers

Editor’s Note from Jeff: This was written by a Korean elementary school teacher as an assignment for my Cross-Cultural Communication course. The task was to “prepare a guide for improving cross-cultural communication and interactions in your workplace”.  Since many Guest English Teachers will be starting school this week, I thought it was the right time to publish this. Hopefully, it will encourage a useful discussion about how Korean Teachers and Guest English Teachers can work together to create a positive learning/working environment.   Thanks very much to Jessi for agreeing to post this here.



Thoughts Before Departure

People love creating metaphors about life, especially involving books. Those metaphors are really misleading.

I’ve been referring to my upcoming sojourn in Korea as “a new chapter” in my life. With that comes the expectation of a blank page, a clean slate.  A lot of expectation, actually. And I’ve fallen through this rabbithole before.


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