“To learn and never be filled, is wisdom; to teach and never be weary, is love.”

After having spent the past 2 years working in Construction Management, I can’t believe what they are paying me to do now. I used to dread Sunday nights knowing I would have to start over a whole new week of dirt, guys, heavy machinery, boring data entry, and being bossed around. I loved my old job a lot, but it was definitely a job.  I lived with Lindsey, a 2nd grade teacher, the whole two years and never stopped telling her I admired her work but could never be a teacher. I guess this is why my mom always tells me, “life is what happens to you while you are planning something else.”

I can’t believe how much I love my “job.” When Sunday nights roll around I find myself thinking, “I can’t wait to see my kiddos!” I was completely in love with them after my first week of teaching. As you remember, I only had about 3 days of shadowing the old teacher before being thrown in. My kids spent the first 2 weeks telling ME what to do. They never complained or questioned me though, and I couldn’t believe how amazingly understanding they were. I can’t believe how much I love them. They each have their own awesome things they do or say and I absolutely adore seeing them trying to figure everything out. They really encourage us to show affection and give them hugs and kisses and it’s a good thing because I would have a hard time not giving them noogies and piggy back rides. Especially this little gremlin:

The Korean school year just ended and graduation was last Friday for my kids and 4 other classes. Just so you know, everything here is simply a photo-op and things tend to feel a bit like a parade. The ceremony lasted about 15 minutes and photos afterward for about 45 minutes. Either way, I cried and so did most of my kids. My co-teacher, Crystal, told me last week that I’ve been chosen to teach the baby class next year. I consider this a huge honor because Crystal said it was given to me because of my patience, the fact that I’m always smiling, and am “easy to look at.” lol. Anyways, this means that this Tuesday (tomorrow is a holiday) I will have 4 adorable (Korean) five year old babies. Let me specify: Korean 5 years old means they will be TURNING American 4 this year. So unless their birthday was in January or February, I have a bunch of 3 year old toddlers showing up to hang out with a girl they can’t understand who looks like someone they’ve never seen before. I’m expecting lots of tears.

Festival was last Thursday, and “parade” doesn’t begin to explain it. Festival is basically a class talent show Korean schools do and they make a huge deal about it. We’ve been cancelling playtime and all kinds of other stuff to allow practice time each day for the past 2 months. They even rent these ridiculous “traditional” costumes to trot them out in. I chose to have B Class sing “All You Need is Love” by the Beatles, memorize 2 poems about “My Mom” and “My Dad,” and then they each wrote why they love their moms and dads. This was interesting since most Korean fathers spend 12 hours in the office then go to the bar so my kids’ rough drafts weren’t pretty. We ended up with a lot of “my dad loves golf,” and “he gives me money,” but it was a learning experience for me.

Hanbok Day was the Tuesday before Lunar New Year and the kids brought their Hanboks (traditional Korean clothing) to school to learn how to bow to their elders for Lunar NY. They definitely couldn’t have a good photo-op unless their teachers sported them, too, but I really loved it. They even made the kids bow to me and say, “bless you” and I gave them words of wisdom and junkfood (supposed to be money), per tradition.

Also worth noting: there is a weird obsession with poo here. Yeah… poo. Can’t figure it out, but there are funny childrens books and plays about it that go beyond, “Everybody Poops.” They even made us go to a ridiculous play in English called, “Doggy Poo.” It was about a dog’s poo that feels it has no meaning or purpose in life until a “beautiful dandelion” (weed?) asks the doggy poo to fertilize it. The moral of the story is “all God’s things have a purpose.” Really? Doggy Poo? I still can’t believe they made us take a picture with it:

Anyways, that’s all for now. Please look for, “LCI D Class” coming soon. My friend Annie who had the baby class last year was peed on a few times, but was only thrown up on once. Yayyy.