Skip to main content

Unmmm..Ya I Think We're Finished

When we first arrived in Korea, my mom asked what I needed in a care package.

Besides oatmeal and medicine and EVERY OTHER WESTERN FOOD YOU CAN THINK OF, I also requested something for the kiddies.

I wanted to have a CD with kids songs to teach the little ones.

Little did I know that in the end, I would be the one who was enjoying them as well.

She sent me a couple but my favourite is the Raffi CD. Being a good Canadian, I grew up on the stuff. And if playing with little kids all day doesn't actually make you feel like a kid again, listening to the songs of your youth will do the trick.

And so, I often have the Raffi CD on in the background when the kids are doing writing or coloring, just to have ENGLISH IN THE FACE for the duration of the class.

It also allows me to sing along.

And it was only today when I realised that maybe that wasn't such a good thing.

Because there I was, sitting at the front of the class, quietly singing along, putting in some actions to one of the funner songs on the CD when it happened.

About four children looked up at me, looked up in what I assumed was enjoyment and awe at the sound of the english tones, coupled with my fantastic actions.

They seemed mesmerized. So much so that after about 3 lines, one of the girls couldn't remember how to praise me in English.

She said something in Korean. And then I looked at her friend, to help me decifer exactly what she was trying to say.

He seemed up to the challenge, pleased he would get to communicate with me, looked up at the ceiling, paused before he pointed to the CD player and said,

"Teacher, finish."

And with that he turned his nose up at what was clearly not only an annoying sound but a frustrating distraction from peace and quiet in the classroom.

The rest of the children nodded, as if there heads were going to pop off in agreement with their friends that the 'noise' coming from the CD player AND the teacher was just too much to bear.

Tough crowd.

But the teacher's always right. Which is why Raffi AND I continued singing for the rest of the class.

Power not going to my head. No. NOT. AT. ALL.


Anonymous said…
I find it incredible that you refused to shut off the music even after your students expressed their displeasure with it--in unison, no less. They didn't LIKE IT, so why would you defiantly FORCE them to endure it? You know, I was looking for blogs by English-speaking teaches in Korea because I'm considering this path next year myself. Your blog was the second one I looked at. The first one was from an American teacher who posted non-stop about the things in Korea that annoyed her including how Koreans "smell like onions and garlic and kimchee". Now I've got your blog where you show no shame--on the contrary, seem to gloat in your own willfulness--in forcing western music on Korean kids who were clearly unhappy.

What a shame. Nevertheless, I am learning something from these blogs. I'm learning that if I do decide to go to Korea to teach, I will make respect for my students my number one priority and I will not gossip about Koreans and their way of life on my blog.
how very brave of you simply post here all your wisdom and

Popular posts from this blog

I'm baaaack!

Hard to believe that last entry was almost three years ago!

Many moons ago, I set this blog up to chronicle our journeys. Once we were grounded a bit more, it kind of lost its way. I spent some time working on my writing offline, taking on different projects and working full time as a technical writer. It was difficult to keep this blog up. Not for any real reason I can articulate. Just had my words redirected to other avenues for awhile.
But, I'm pleased to say, after over a decade away, we are back in the UK, living and re-experiencing a place we enjoyed in the mid-2000s.
Social media has certainly changed the way we look at blogs. I'm excited to navigate this new world, explore just what people post, what people read. What's better on one of the many new platforms and what's still appropriate for good old fashioned blogosphere.
For now, here's a peek at where we're staying -- in a pretty little village just outside of Oxford. A temporary home for now but suc…

Room with a view

We've been in our new home for 10 weeks nos and it's feeling more like home than ever.Every day, I sit down at my desk to the most inspiring view.A collection of stories is building. This space makes it easy to gather my thoughts.I've been consumed with a few work projects and am looking forward to collecting my thoughts soon.Writers club is still going ... I was on a bit of a hiatus but hope to get into my routine for fall. For now, boat gazing is helping.


My regular journaling has significantly improved my mood.

I've been taking some time, twice a week, to polish existing content as well as develop my floating ideas into a more concrete outline.

I've felt this focus for the last 6 weeks that I can't really describe properly. It's as though I've shifted my thinking totally. Writing is my craft. It's what I do, who I am, how I exist. It's like my mojo.

So, I guess, I've gotten my mojo back. My focus, my purpose, my essence.

And it feels good. It feels right. And I am almost understanding more now why the best writing of the best writers happens when they are older, more polished, more experienced, more rough around the edges.

When all the youthful spark has been extinguished and what's left, is the determined embers, that will not go softly, that will not die out. That will continue, fervently glowing, creating warmth and not just drawing attention from its flicker, but pulling people in by it's so…