Sunday, August 24, 2014

EPIK Orientation: Days 3 and 4

So I warned you from the beginning I would be bad at this whole regular blogging thing. Hence an update three days after the last. Of course, it is difficult to make updates when you aren't doing very much. day number three wasn't anything super duper special to be honest. We had more lectures, though interesting, there were more than one could stand when you already have a degree in education and you're in a foreign country ready to explore. Friday's lectures were on Cooperative Learning, Co-teaching, Lesson Planning, and EPIK Duties & Regulations (sort of an expectations and open question forum). And then of course there were more Korean lessons. Friday's lesson involved learning how to count, which I admit I hadn't mastered, but I think I'm doing well now. Of course this was the Sino-Korean number system. There is also the traditional Korean numbers that are used at the same time and therefore also necessary. Eventually I'll get around to learning those too.

Now Saturday was an awesome day. We actually had a field trip and it was my first time truly feeling like I was in another country. Having been cooped up with hundreds of other English speaking folk has sort of made me feel like I've been in a bubble. So back to Saturday. We went to a Hanok Village and got to experience so Korean traditional crafts at the Jeonju Cultural Arts Center. It was amazing to see all the old homes. There were also so many shops and places to get snacks, but I tried to behave because of a number of reasons: 1. We were being provided a lovely, and free, lunch of bibimbap and 2. I don't want to have to pack up anything else I buy because I have yet to get to my final destination of Gwangju. So we basically strolled around all the historical places and I completely let out my inner nerd and took a couple hundred pictures along the. (Note I am too tired and lazy to post said pictures now, but eventually they'll make their way up, probably by need of pack mule.) After our free time stroll, then our lovely traditional, and free, lunch we headed over to the cultural arts center and learned to play some traditional drums. I completely failed at this of course. I am going to blame my uncomfortable position sitting on a hard wood floor. It was awesome though, as was our enigmatic mohawked instructor. After making a fool of myself, we made much needed fans from basically construction paper and some sticks. It's beautiful, but I don't know how long it'll last.

After a nice long day, of course I had to go and celebrate with a friend on her birthday. If you know me, you know I am not much of an assertive person in larger groups, so you would be surprised to learn that I went to a noraebang, in other words to karaoke. This was only made possible by the consumption of a particular substance (only one), and I was still very reluctant. This is why I only managed to work up to two duets: "Don't Stop Believin'" and "We Are the Champions." After our hour was up we joined another much larger group of EPIK teachers celebrating another birthday and laughed at the insanity that ensued to the soundtrack of 90s songs. Eventually we made our way to another establishment with more beverages meant to be consumed by those of a particular age limit. We tried something I can't remember the name of and if I could I wouldn't be able to spell it. It wasn't bad, though I wouldn't necessary order it again. After some indepth conversation about the school systems of Asia versus the US (what else are teachers going to talk about) we headed back to the dorms before we were locked out after the midnight curfew.

Though I am mostly through today and therefore today's events there is still more today to be had and I will therefore leave today's occurrences for the next blog...whenever that might be.

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