Thursday, February 26, 2009

A Korean school year

For those of you who don't know, which is probably everyone, except possibly for Emily, here's the breakdown of a Korean school schedule, as best I can figure it.

The school year starts at the beginning of March; this year, it's March 2nd. They have class from about 9-3 every day, with some recess time and a lunch period that we eat in the cafetorium. Most students then go to Hogwon after school. This is a private academy specializing in a certain area -- they have English hogwons, tae kwon do hogwons, piano howgons, math and science, and so forth and so on. Most students will therefore study from 9am till 7 or 8 in the evening most days. I think they also have half days of school on Saturdays, and some older (high school) kids have classes on Sundays too but I'm not really sure about all that, since it ain't my job to know.

Anyway, the first semester goes from March until the end of July. Then, about a month off, starting up again at the end of August. From August until Christmas is the 2nd semester. After Christmas, there's no class again until this weird little weeklong pre-graduation thing near the beginning of February. So, basically, we have January, most of February, and August off.

Now, this gets a little more complicated, because we also have to do English camps during the vacations. Some schools had their camps at the end of December; ours ran from January 5th-16th this year... two weeks, mornings only, of extra English fun. Whoo-ee. In addition to that, we had some teacher training thing for one week; we brought in teachers from area elementary schools and demonstrated what we do with our students at the Global Center, and showed them some things they could do to incorporate English into their own classrooms. I will have to do this again in the summer, although I'm not sure if it's the same amount of time, or what. I'm sure they'll give me plenty of notice, because that's how things work over here... Get it? Sarcasm is good... yeah.

So, I hope that helps.

My whole body hurts from working out. No pain, no gain, right? It's just funny when like, the muscles you worked out 4 days ago haven't stopped hurting, and then you compound the new muscles hurting... so it hurts to do everything. Stretch my legs out? Yup, that hurts. Bend my knees? Oh yeah... Pick something up off the ground? You betcha. Open the door? Close the door? Stir a pot of pasta? Sit up? Lie down? Turn my head to the left? Anyway, you get the picture. At least I can say it's that good kind of pain, that comes from having done something. As opposed to say, I dunno, bedsores.


jacksonbaby said...

I would be interested to know what the kids' home life is like with them in class so much. I suppose it wouldn't differ much from ours in that parents here work all hours of the night. Hmmmm.....interesting.

Sean said...

Well, from what I can tell, it's not much different from American kids. They go home, eventually, eat dinner (which is usually rice), and watch TV, do homework, go to bed.

Sounds about like my evenings as a child, apart from the rice. =)