Last weekend, Luke had the idea to walk around Gyeseong to learn the area some more. He knew there was a reservoir about 2.5 miles away so we went to check it out. Although, we didn't see a way to get up close to the lake, it was still a nice sight seeing as though we live next to an onion farm so there are few trees, little grass, and no water everywhere you look. I think it would be an awesome run in the mornings that I will try out very soon!
On Sunday, the entire staff participated in a race with our 60 year old bosses. And we all crushed it. Five of the teachers (myself and Luke included) ran the 5k, while three of the teachers, Richard and Suzi all ran the 10k! We left CEV at 8:00 AM and arrived at the scene of the race with an hour and a half to spare. Drums were banging, music was blaring, balloons were fleeing toddlers' hands and our staff was drawing stares from every direction. So many foreigners in one big group! There was a female group there to help everyone get warmed up. They taught us a dance and then with about 6 inches of space per person, we followed their dance instructions to warm up before our race, unavoidably hitting everyone around us in the process. It was a total success.
There were many pictures taken of us and we were even in the newspaper the next day! I am pretty sure we all hit or exceeded our goals and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Sam even won a trophy and $100 for placing 3rd overall in the 10k, and is now the favorite child or the Golden Boy of our staff, haha! After the race, Richard and Suzi took us to eat Bulgogi Jungol (Barbequed Beef Stew - the website this link takes you to is the ultimate Korean recipe site)! This was Luke's and my first meal here and every time I have it, I love it even more than the last. The broth is to die for, and I have gotten better at using chopsticks so I can actually spend more time eating, and less time dropping and re-picking up my food.
We were told to bite our [participation] medals... ?
"I can cut up this stew. I can mix this like a professional."
We started teaching from our new books this week! I'm pretty excited actually - getting to teach new material (also learning the new material myself haha) and coming up with new lessons and activities. It all creates new challenges which keeps things interesting. It's also fun to see how we all teach the same material differently. I think the difficult part will be teaching each subject during a single period instead of extending it to a couple of classes. By extending the lessons, the students were able to learn the vocabulary in the classroom, and then apply it to the activities in the simulation rooms. But maybe having more subjects and learning a little about each will be better? Regardless, it is a different approach altogether and will be yet another challenge!
Yesterday I began with days of the week, weather, and Hobbies and Sports. Today was Biology (biomes and habitats), Hospital, Art and Science. The kids are 4th graders so this is their first time at CEV. A very large group of students (10 in each class) and a very energetic bunch as well. The entire staff was POOPED by 4:30. Lucky for us, evening classes started today as well! There are three evening classes. Each class is co-taught by a couple. Women teach on Tuesdays and Men teach on Wednesdays. Class is from 7:10-8:30 with a 10 minute break in the middle, and it goes to the end of June. Luke and I have nine students in our evening class, and one of our student's English names is Hedgehog. (#Winning) These students are more advanced and have a completely different book - a LOT more reading, discussion and critical thinking. Tonight went well and although they all seemed so tired (I couldn't blame them), we had good introductions and set goals for the duration of class, and then started with the first article. I think I kept it entertaining enough for nobody to fall asleep or absolutely hate it so it's not a terrible start. At least Luke will be the evil teacher assigning homework every week :)
That is it for now, but I do have to leave you with some more pictures from the race and the newest Korean phrase I've learned: "Hangook-mal-jui-ko-li-mahn-koom-hae-yo" which means, "My Korean is as short as a mouse's tail" haha!