Thursday, October 18, 2012


Over the past three years that I have been teaching in Korea, I have had many laughs.  My students' never cease to assume me with the quirky little things they say and do.  But, there are times when they say the most mind-blowing stuff which leaves me speechless.

This week, I have been testing the students' speaking ability. The test is structured in the form of an interview so I get to speak one-on-one with my boys. This test has given me a little more insight into some of my students and I feel more connected to them.

I selected three questions which have more of a personal feel.  I went through each question in class a few weeks earlier in preparation for the test and gave the students some skeleton points to work with when answering the questions.  A few students asked me to check their grammar and sentence construction because they were really determined to get a perfect score on this test.  It really pleased me to see the great initiative that was put in by most of my boys.

And so the interviews began... Some better than others. Some were excruciatingly painful for me because of the blank looks on their faces.  I had a few laughs along the way but what really caught my attention was the heart warming answers that some of my students gave.

Here are a few of those precious conversations with my second grade (8th grade) students.

Question:  Travel can be a great experience. Which country would you like to visit and why?
Answer: I would like to visit different countries in Africa because they are poor and I want to help them.
Question: How would you help them?
Answer: I will get money from my father and give to them.

Question:  Which country would you like to visit?
Answer: North Korea!
Question: Why?
Answer: I want to take food and money to them.

Question: What is your dream job?

Min Chul: I would like to be a dentist because there are many poor people with no teeth and I want to help them.

Oh Won:  I want to be a diplomat and work to bring peace in the world.

Jae Young: I want to be a teacher like you and help students study hard.

Chan Huk: I would like to be a doctor because my sister is sick and she is always kind to me but I'm not so  kind so I want to be her magician and make her better.
**This student went on to tell me what was wrong with his sister and how sad his family is.  I was brought to tears.**

The next one is slightly funny but at the same time it's really sweet.

Question: Tell me about your best friend.
Answer: My friend is very cute. He looks like a flower and he has many girlfriends.
Question: Do you also have a girlfriend?
Answer: No!
Question: Are you sad that your friend has many girlfriends and you don't?
Answer: No, I'm not sad because he is my friend and he is happy so I'm happy with him.

It's an absolute blessing to be teaching these boys.  They can be a handful at times but they bring so much joy on a daily basis.  I love them to bits!

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