Monday, August 27, 2012

Typhoon's A-Comin'

So my Mondays are supposed to be pretty chill because I only have to teach two classes and attend a teacher's meeting in the morning. I knew today was a bit different since I was introducing myself to the teachers for the first time at the teacher's meeting. I was pretty nervous for that because I had only prepared a few lines in Korean to say and I wasn't quite sure what the Principal or Vice Principal would say about me when introducing me at the beginning. I didn't want to repeat what they said so I was trying hard to pay attention and pick up key words they might use. The introduction went fine (I think) and I survived my first teacher's meeting. Mr. Lee gave me the rundown of the important things that were relevant to me afterwards so I'm extremely grateful for that. I sat down next to another English co-teacher, Sunny, and she came and said the Principal and Vice Principal wanted to see me while I was talking to Mr. Lee. I went into the Principal's office and saw a bunch of teachers with them. Apparently I'm invited a weekly meeting in their office after the teacher's meeting. Sunny told me they wanted to get to know me better... even though they don't know English and my Korean sucks... it's going to be interesting. They had green tea for me to drink though so that's a plus.

My classes went really well. I think I'm going to really enjoy my Mondays and dread my Fridays--which is not something I expected. In both of my classes, I had no sacrificial lambs or attitude/management problems. The kids seem to respect me coming in and even though there was a little bit of side chatter, they would quiet down when I stared at them or raised my voice slightly. It was a good fear. They would also "ooh" when I would tell a kid to stand up so I guess they're just a more obedient group. So in all my classes, I've been trying to explain the phrase, "what's up?" to them and not all of them are getting it. There was one kid today however that blew me away. He saw me in the hallway and said, "What's up teacher?" It was awesome. I mean, he is the class captain so I guess I should expect him to pay attention and know what's up but still; it was awesome. I guess it's going to be the small victories that keep me invigorated this year. In the middle of my second class, I was called out to go meet the co-founder of the school. It was literally a two minute meeting. I felt kind of bad since I had left my gift for him at home and Tracey had brought hers and presented it to him. It was definitely an awkward moment for me. The co-founder didn't even ask about Sunday School; it was a "nice to meet you...if you need anything, let me know" talk.

My last class ended at 12:10pm and then I had lunch...and nothing else for the rest of the day. This part confused me. I would be sitting at my desk, walking around the halls, and not much else for the rest of the day. When I arrived the first day, Mr. Lee told me to stay until 5pm everyday so I wasn't quite sure what to do with myself. I blogged a bit (the really long post before this one) and did other random office work. There's actually quite a bit of stuff I can do like lesson plan, create units, etc. but I haven't really hit that yet. I think if I look at it, I might be a bit overwhelmed. My host sisters were really sweet and brought me my gifts that I had left at the house. I was going to present them to the Principal, Vice Principal, and co-teacher at the end of the day. So around 4pm, I marched to their office with my co-teacher and gave them my gifts. I think they were pleased to know that I got them something.

That was pretty much my day at school... oh and a few other random things. I got to eat lunch with Tracey today. Since I didn't have class 5th period after lunch, I just ate a little later with her. Oh and there's a typhoon coming tonight/tomorrow morning so my classes got cancelled for tomorrow. I do however have to go into school at 3pm to make the teacher's worship session at 4pm. Anyway, typhoon Bolaven is hitting Jeju and then making it's way straight up. Apparently, Mokpo is supposed to get hit the hardest compared to the other mainland cities. I'm not nervous but I do live on the 15th floor (the top floor) and my host sisters freaking out don't help. When I got home, they were talking about it. Tonight, at home, it's just me and my sisters. Grandma had a headache so my host mom, dad, and brother went to spend the night with her. We got takeout fried chicken in a sweet, tangy sauce for dinner so all is well on my end.

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