Sunday, May 17, 2015

Kickball and Cards. Happy Teacher's Day!

This week was another fun but particularly tiring week. It didn't start out especially crazy, but I had been informed that on Wednesday, I would have to join my fellow teachers in kickball "tryouts." Apparently, ever year or 2 years, there is a kickball tournament between schools, and all of the teachers play. So, on Wednesday, we had to practice to see who would make the team.

This was another interesting look into Korean culture. I don't think I've played kickball since elementary school, maaaaaaybe middle school. And so playing after all those years was daunting, until I found out that, since it's all women playing, we apparently needed to play a watered down, baby version of kickball. I'll quell my feminist rage for a moment because Korea isn't caught up on that yet.

What's watered down kickall? Well, picture Tee Ball for baseball. No pitcher. They just set the ball and you kick. We could only run one base at a time. No tag outs, base outs only. 

I tried not to play too hard (not that I'm super good, but I know how to kick and catch a ball), but because some of the other teachers are like, super sports averse, and because my competitive American nature came out and I wanted to at least look like I could play a bit, I had a few pretty good hits and runs. I even caught a couple of kicks.  Turns out I remember how to kick pretty far. I ended up looking like I'm decent, and was therefore drafted to the team to play against another school.

The plus side of this is that some of my fifth and sixth grade boys who were helping out by being ball boys saw me, and now they think I'm super awesome because I'm not only smart and pretty, but I can play sports too. Jjang!!! 

Thankfully, Young Ah and I both got drafted to the team, so we will be suffering, er, playing together. I may sound less than enthused, but I actually love getting to be included in my school's activities like this. It makes me feel like I'm really a part of the school, and not just the outsider.  The game is next month, so I'll have to see how it goes. I'm actually looking forward to the team dinner after haha. 

In other fun news, my Korean class finally finished our intermediate 1 book and had a test, so now I'm on to intermediate 2!!! I should crack down more on studying the vocab in the books, but I don't like studying that much at my desk because everyone stops by and comments on my studies, which is nice but distracting and awkward.  I'll try and work harder though! I must study hard for taking the TOPIK test later this year. November seems far, but it's past the halfway point in May!!! Yikes!!!

On Friday, I had my 'open class.' The VP is so busy that she only dropped by for the beginning, and my principal had ankle surgery so she was in the hospital, so they basically just took Young Ah's and my handler's word for it (plus, the kids still think I'm fascinating), so that overall went well. Just gotta submit my lesson plan and I should be good to go for my 3rd (and most likely last) year at my school. 

Friday was also Teacher's Day, a day where Korea celebrates teachers. Obviously. My school, and many others, don't really promote or allow gifts, but I still got some cards and a few gifts from my current and former students! It was nice to see some of my students come back and tell me they missed me. I even remembered some from my first semester here, even though I never could remember their names. 

I got lots of adorable cards and things, so those are the photo highlights of this blog today. I'm a rather emotional person, so I spent most of Teacher's Day both delighted and on the verge of emotional happy tears because of the love I got from my beautiful students. 

from a 4th grader. Cesca says I look like a hot
dog with textbook hands. I'm such a pretty
hot dog. 

most classes make these cards with the carnations
on them. I got a few delivered to me. So sweet.

Su In is super cute and she likes English a lot.

I love student art work

a 3rd grader's mom prepared these ricecakes
for all of her teachers. It was sticky and sweet.
Very delicious!

"We love you teacher" brownies with lunch

One of my 4th graders brought me a stuffed
puppy! So cute!!! 

Christopher moved to Korea from England a
while ago, so he has an awesome accent.
This note is so cute. I'm dying. Look at that heart

I usually assume my sixth graders hate me
because of their lack of energy, so whenever
one says they love me, I cherish it.
The Korean just says who they are
and thanks for teaching English.

3rd grader gift

another flower gift

The Korean on this card basically says, "Christina Teacher, you
are very good at English and Korean. You are a genius." Young
Ah confirmed it haha.


Side note: the Hello teacher? is a direct translation mistake my kids make a lot, because the greeting for hello in Korean is actually a question, even if it doesn't sound like it. Written out, it says Annyeonghaseyo? (hello?) or Seon Saeng Nim annyeonghaseyo (Hello teacher?) 

another pretty "thank you for teaching English and I'll study hard"

I love this girl. She's adorable, works hard, and
apparently thinks I'm the most beautiful teacher.
Look at how many times she says I'm beautiful.

My job is the best. I love it.

more 3rd grade love

cards and candies I received. I didn't have enough room in my
bag to bring my puppy home haha

I have really tough days in Korea. I get homesick, I get frustrated, I get angry, I get lonely, I get really tired, I get fed up, I get annoyed. But all of that pales in comparison to the love and joy I get from my silly students, my awesome co workers and my wonderful friends. Teacher's Day really encouraged me, and I'll have to try and remember this feeling all year when I get annoyed or frustrated at school. I'm looking forward to more good times here!


In special news, I got asked to make a contribution to the Humanities blog at Ithaca College. Check out my post here


In dance class today, we learned about 3 minutes of the ultra popular Good Boy by G Dragon and Taeyang from BigBang. It was super hard because we've been practicing a lot lately for a concert next week, but it was super fun and I love the song, so I'm happy to have learned a good bit of it.

Cesca and I learned the rest of the Miss A dance that we studied last week. We may move on to finishing this song, if we get some time to work on it in the future. I'm not good at it, but it's super fun and awesome, and I feel great having started dancing again, so that's what counts, right?

Off to another week of who knows what over here. Love to you all!

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