As you know I’ve had free reign over fifth grade for the last few weeks and I feel that my efforts have paid off! They’re a bit more comfortable with English now but I still throw in Korean for occasional comedic effect.
5-1 Student: where is man teacher? (Toupe sub)
Me: I think he went to the bathroom. Why? 보고 싶어요? Do you miss him?
Student: No! I don’t miss him! Bathroom… long time.
Class: devolves into what I can only assume is poop related conversation and now I know what 똥 means.
A few minutes later…
Me: oh he’s coming back! Everyone shhhh.
Class: immediately pretends to pay attention to the board
5-2 had excellent questions and were curious to learn more. So I explained the difference between straight, wavy, and curly hair since the book doesn’t include wavy. We also talked about light brown hair. Their curiosity was very encouraging! This class also didn’t know the extent of my Korean so when I gave some directions in Korean they all went “woaaaaahhhh” And one boy* added later “teacher, very good Korean”.
5-3 is still cracking up about pants v panties. Strong Girl is now my ally and yells at her comrades when they’re not focusing or corrects students who don’t know my name. Weak Boy sits across the room and is actually a bit quiet but very earnest.
Fun fact: Did you know “lightsaber” in korean is just hangeulized “laser sword”?
레이저 소드 [leh ee jeo soh duh]
4-1 said I look like Elsa’s sister (“Anna!” “No teacher, it’s Ana” said in a posh English way) so I twirled around for them much to their amusement. One student has taken to telling me that he likes Alexa Teacher (previous teacher) more because he’s disrespectful but I ignore him.
After a very full day, Monday is my heaviest load, I decided to check my bank account. Paycheck received! I went straight to the gym to register.
When I think about it now, the area where I teach is more of a neighborhood without any foreigners but everyone that I shop from or talk to here is very nonchalant and helpful. And there are deals to be had if you know where to look.
At the gym there was a man behind the counter so I started my registration with him but told him that I had talked to a woman the week before and she gave me some details.
I don’t know if he was flustered because he didn’t expect me to speak Korean but he did say something like “sorry, you’re just really pretty so…” so I said “discount?” Because I have no shame. And like I know it’s maybe a line but I would like to choose that it was just a genuine reaction.
I said thank you and made a little V frame with my hands but he was luckily spared the rest of our conversation by said woman making an appearance. He gestured to her and she said “oh hi!” Then took over the registration for him.
I want to remind you that this took place entirely in Korean: I understood most everything until she started explaining something about the lockers so I just went into yes mode. She asked me if I wanted to do monthly installments and I said I got my paycheck today so I’ll pay all at once. (Well really it was just me saying “월급을 받았어요. 한번 괜찮아요 [cash throwing hand sign]”.)
It came to about $360 for a year of membership which includes my own locker and the clothing laundry service; most private gyms run $60-$70 a month. I’m pretty sure I also got another discount somewhere in there so yea boiiii.
I took extra cash out of the bank to treat myself and promptly spent it on produce. Worth it.
*This boy would later win the vote for school representative.