If you ever see on my schedule that I’m planning on spending just 24 hours in a country again and aim to get some work done then please email me and tell me I’m mad! Especially if it’s Korea, the only country I’ve ever known highway traffic jams to last past midnight!
I spent this morning rushing round Seoul like crazy trying to get everything done before catching the plane back to Beijing. I didn’t even get chance to update YouTube on the free Incheon WiFi, eventhough it’s been the first time I’ve been able to get on there in a month. But hopefully there should be some exciting new Korea projects coming soon so stayed tuned!
Last night was much more civilised out with a group of primary school teachers. (Apologies for sending the meeting place info out to everyone else so late, I’ll try and be more organised next time.)
Korean Primary Schools
Judging from my previous workshops in Korea and the emails I get, I always thought in Korea that Genki English was most popular in “Hagwons” (private evening schools) so it was great to hear about it being used in Korean public elementary school. The teachers were taking the Korean national curriculum, but substituting in Genki English themes, where they fitted, to jazz the lessons up. If you teach in a similar situation and find topics that aren’t yet covered by Genki English themes, then let me know and I’ll see if I can maybe make some more themes for you to fill the holes and bring a little more excitement to those lessons too.
Use the Korean Games First
One other really good idea was to use the online games in the kids’ native language first, then do the English one. i.e. try the Winter Clothes in Korean, then the English version. There are also version for Spanish, Chinese, German, Thai & Japanese.
I was also asked about 6th graders (see also Harry Potter Effect) and kindergarten as well as what to do with unresponsive kids: 1)Comfort 2) Interesting 3) Understanding). Plus loads of other education stuff which was very cool and might also lead to some very interesting sounding workshops in Korea in the future! Very exciting.
Into the future…
Being here though is very different from China, it’s a whole other world. For the past four weeks I’ve been eating, sleeping, breathing the Chinese way of doing things and it’s amazing to pop along to another country and get hit with “Well yeah, there are other ways to do things!” We really need to make sure our kids experience more countries!
In China the watchword is always “potential”. China certainly has that and is very exciting. But in Korea it’s like jumping 20 years into the future. Everyone is so ordered, has brilliant white teeth and is so well mannered, the streets are clean and well kept, everyone has a super powered mobile phone, and the killer app it turns out is watching TV on the subway, or paying for your morning coffee with your cell phone instead of money.
This is what China will be like in 20 years time. Although of course the best thing about Korea is the gorgeous food!
Here’s a quick video I did for the Location Free Lifestyle site:
Fingers crossed I’ll be back in Korea later in the year, so get in touch if you’d be interested in a workshop. I’ll also get working on more Genki Korean stuff, we deliver 1,000 pages a day on that site already so I guess people like it.
And would anyone be interested in having the Lesson Plans book in Korean to help lesson planning with Korean teachers?