Miracles in December (the fact that I finally can post is the miracle)



I know that I had mentioned that I wanted to do a 12 days of kpop Christmas but due to a high volume of drama and stress and then a high workload I just found no time to post.

But now that I have a little free time and with Christmas only 5 days away now, I figured I would post a Top 10 type of thing to get us into the Christmas mood (which is sorely lacking in Korea due to the fact that it’s a “couples holiday here”…strange.) These also aren’t in any particular order…just the way that I think to remember them.

But if you are like me sometimes become tired of the usual Christmas songs you’ve heard for 27+years ….then it’s really nice to listen to some of the songs I’ve listed below (as well as others I haven’t included) to get you into that Christmas spirit!

1-Jelly Christmas 2012


2- TTS- Dear Santa


3-BTOB – Winter’s Tale

4 IU You&I (It was hard to choose between this and Good Day but this just to me reminds me more of Christmas)

5 Starship 2013-Snow Candy

6 Infinite-Lately

7 Jessica -Wonderland (I’ve never been a huge fan of her voice but oddly enough I really find this song catchy and her voice fits the song well-plus this MV is so beautiful)

8 EXO – Sing For You

9-EXO Miracles in December (yeah…of course you know I would EXO two spots ūüôā I didn’t include their most recent one because I haven’t really had a chance to sit down and listen to it)

10 SHINee Winter Wonderland (their latest Japanese single)

Bonus Video ūüôā

And then there were 5 ….


Can’t believe there are only 5 more days of this 13day of Halloween Song challenge!

Today will also be an update as well because it’s Thursday and due to another school event (the amount in this month alone is staggering) I have no class.

Lesson Plans:

So with the Halloween holiday coming up, I wanted to do something special for my kids. I remember as a student, anytime there was a holiday, school schedules were a little different. It was exciting and fun and the best time.

But Halloween isn’t really a thing in Korea (like it is apparently in Japan). The students know the general idea-costumes and candy. But that’s about it. There’s no special event or anything (which makes sense) but I always was told that I’m not only introducing English to them but also to bring a little American culture as well.

So I decided last year to do some things that I remember loving as a student myself.

Now sadly there aren’t really costumes and I doubt the school would be happy if I asked the students to dress up next Monday.

So I decided to purchase some cheap things from the local store.

The first activity is called “Candy Guessing Game”

And to celebrate the holiday in class, I bought a clear glass jar, filled it with peanut M&M’s (I hate regular M&M’s and I will be eating them afterwards ūüôā I counted them as I put them into the jar. Then I have the students line up, look at the jar and guess how many candies are in the jar.

Now in my youth, the winner usually kept the jar of candies, but due to the fact I have 8 classes and Peanut M&M’ s aren’t cheap here, I bought chocolate bars for the winners. If you have smaller classes or find cheaper candy, then you can give the winner the jar of candy. I used Peanut M&M’s because of their color, size and the fact I want to eat them afterwards. I’m a little selfish.

I suggest though if you have multiple classes you wait until all classes have done the activity. If you announce the winner, students from other classes will ask what the winning number is and eventually all the kids will know the winning number. It sucks especially if some of your classes are on different lessons (trust me I know) but unless you want to put them in a different jar and redo it, it’s just better to wait until all of your classes have guessed.

The next activity is a Halloween word search to be done while waiting for their turn to guess the candy. Korean students really love word searches for some reason. It’s really easy to find these online. I chose a medium level one so the smarter kids have something to keep them busy for a while, and the lower level students can work with partners.

The final activity is showing a little bit of “Nightmare before Christmas”. Kids here love slightly bizarre things and animation-so I assumed they would love this. It’s a different type of animation than they are used to and as we all know Tim Burton is into some weird shit. I would suggest if you don’t have this than try Corpse Bride maybe….Corline apparently has a weird scene that involves some…kind of animation nudity¬† or something and showing that to kids without parent supervision might be considered bad taste.


Since there are only 5 more days left I chose Beast/B2st “Shadow”. This is one of my all time favorite KPOP songs though it’s less popular than their infamous “Fiction”. It’s maybe not as “themey” as other videos, but it’s definitely creepy…..especially the end.

It’s also appropriate I chose this for the 5th spot if a little sad.

Though not entirely surprising, Hyunseung left the group earlier this year.¬† He’s always been a little bit quieter and 4D but I felt like after his dad died he really changed a lot. I thought he was getting better the past year or so but with all the “scandals” he’s been involved, and his own solo album, it really felt like he didn’t want to be part of the group anymore. I think the saddest thing is that the members revealed they don’t speak anymore.

So now there are only 5 members.

To me this was a group that was way more talented than some of the bigger groups out there-because every single one of them had a talent. And while as individual members they were great, together they were perfect. They always sounded like the swallowed a CD. Their performances were always on point. There really was no fault with this group.

And then CUBE really ran them into the ground. No promotion, nothing. And they weren’t the only group to feel this in CUBE.

So I was relieved to see them leave. I’m grateful to CUBE for giving them the second chance they all deserved but it’s time for them to make their own label.


Aside for the typical post about music, I also went to the Lotte Duty Free Family Concert last Saturday. It was a first come first serve type of thing so I didn’t really want to wait too long because I would be far away anyway. Didn’t really matter because the seats didn’t fill up as much as I thought. I was pretty close to the field, though still far away. Luckily I was alone so finding 1 seat open is much easier.

Bad news, my EXO lightstick batteries died. Good news…I was surrounded by EXO-L’s.

I always forget how crazy EXO-L’s go at any event EXO is at. I mean this in the best way possible.

Other than EXO, TWICE, NCT (both units minus Dream), EXID, G Friend (the place was really quiet during their performance…I’m not a huge fan because I think all their songs sound the same, but I felt bad for them), Mamamoo (who were SOOOOOOOO amazing-the past few times I’ve seen them they looked super tired but they were all on fire and the place was SOOOOOO loud for them)….I think that’s it. There weren’t many groups but they each did at least 5 songs so it was really nice.

Also there weren’t any idiot hosts and filming so it went super smooth. It was nice seeing Lay do his song, but sad that EXO only did 4 songs. Though they finished with “Lucky” which is one of my favorite songs of theirs so it was okay.



So I’m hoping finally this weekend, I can get to hiking in Goyang. My weekends have been so busy and I haven’t had time -plus it rained last weekend. I was invitied to go hiking with some of the teachers at my school last week but they didn’t tell me until I had been at school for a few hours already…and had no way to change before they left (I don’t understand how they thought that I would be able to go with no warning-like a day in advance would have been nice).

I really wanted to go hiking in the fall for the colors, but it’s been on and off rainy this fall (wow rainy season is finally here!)

So I’m hoping, weather barring (and physically -I started a new workout regime) I can make it to the mountains this Saturday and see some great fall colors, enjoy the crisp air, visit the town, and get a great hike in.



Lucky One


I’m the worst blogger ever. Yes I can make the excuse that Dream Concert blew my mind and I haven’t been able to put that into words. Yes I can say that I slammed my hand in the door and it is still painful/swollen/bruised 3 days later.

But mostly I’ve been lazy.

There has been a lot that has gone down since I last blogged.

So I’ll start with the important new things and end with Dream concert so you don’t have to listen to me ramble about KPOP .

First, our school introduced a new policy yesterday. We can only take out garbage and trash on certain days at a specific time. Why? I learned that one of my students from last year, a current sixth grader who has special needs (AKA she has never said one word to me and I learned from YoungJoon last year that she was a little slow) was sexually molested. She told her friends about it and they in turn told the teacher.

With regards to the major trial case that it currently dominating US news, I think the way my school and the students handled it is very important.

In Korea, females are still regarded as less than males, more so than the US where I grew up. Sometimes things like rape or sexual harassment are even less of a topic than they are in the USA. You just suck it up and continue because you want to keep your job and don’t want to be seen as a crybaby. This is not good policy.

The Gangnam murder was a big deal here (mostly because crime isn’t really reported with the same casualness that it is in the US). The murder said he hated women which was why he killed her. It sparked a talk about the major gender inequality in Korea. It gave women a platform to speak out.¬† And while it may not change too much, it makes more people aware of how male dominated this society is. One of the main issues became: was it a hate crime against women or was he mentally disturbed? From what has been found, he had prior hatred towards women-saying he couldn’t stand being mistreated by them which makes it sound like a hate crime. In other evidence, he had patterns of having mental illness for quite a few years beforehand. For me, I think if you do commit hate crimes there is a part of you that is mentally ill. Not in the sense of how people who suffer from bi polar, borderline , or other mental illness are defined. But if you hate a specific group so much that you have a need to go out and commit acts of murder and violence towards them…then yes I do think you are mentally disturbed. But at the same time it is not something that can be fixed with medicine or therapy….so it becomes blurry – is the killer someone who is suffering from mental illness or is he just a woman hating jack ass?

Going back to my student, wound up telling her friends who in turn told the teacher. Now I can understand why the student didn’t tell the teacher. She’s a young student, who has some mental issues, as well as maybe fearing that it wouldn’t matter. I’m so proud of her friend who were strong enough and cared enough for her to inform an adult. And I’m proud of the school for reporting it to the police, rather than trying to keep it quiet, fearing it would damage the school and cause people to think the school couldn’t keep students safe.¬† The school is also taking measures of safety as well. When I took out the paper recycling today there was a large truck with the paper right outside the front door as well as about 5 teachers kind of guarding the space.

Now I don’t know what happened to the student, or if the parents will get her the help she will likely need. But as far as Korean society goes, the school did it’s best to take proper legal and safety measures for the future.

It’s a shame I can’t say the same for the poor woman who now has to watch her rapist walk free in 3-6 months time.

This rape case is so much more than what it seems on the surface. It touches on the idea of color, victim blaming and judges.

Color: where to begin. While I do believe that America is a white dominated society I’m not someone who necessarily finds¬† color in every single thing and feel the need to debate it to death. However, in this case….it’s hard not to. I saw a video that compared rapist Brock Turner to other rapists of color. RBT (rapist brock turner) was given a name, information about his school, his sport of choice along with a nice photo. Set that next to a series of black men who committed roughly the same act : no name (just rapist/man) nothing about his personal life just the acts of crime¬† that he committed.

The prime example is the Brian Banks case. Almost identical case. No priors. Star athletes. Except that when he was found guilty (which ironically he was not actually guilty and later released) he was sentenced to years of prison time. And he served about 5 of them. RBT is only sentenced to 6 months, 3 if he has good behavior. The judge says that it could hurt his future. You mean like how Brian Banks kind of lost his future for 5 years after he was WRONGFULLY convicted? You mean how the victim now has to live with the fact she was raped for 20 minutes? The judge clearly was one of those pity students at Standford.

Which brings me to the next point. The judge should have not been judging in the first place. He should have recused himself. He is a Stanford alum, former athlete who has a past similar to RBT-well up until the point that he raped an unconscious girl behind a dumpster. Yes, it is a good thing to give a sentence that is fair to all-and in some cases that means a lighter sentence. But not in this case. RBT is like a child-he doesn’t seen to understand what he did wrong-he has no remorse-no self awareness. In this case…giving a lighter sentence is doing the reverse effect, it’s not helping him realize anything other than “I can’t commit crimes, and get off with a light sentence-maybe because I’m white and had a biased judge” No, he is just realizing that with the dumbest piece of writing in history (including Twilight) AKA a letter from his highly biased, misogynistic father, and some victim blaming, he can avoid any responsibility.

Which brings me to my final point and this goes back to the initial sexual molestation crime that happened at my school. Rape is rape. Whether it’s because someone is wearing a short skit, or has had too much to drink. Yes, drinking makes us do really dumb shit. I’ve seen it. I’ve done…some of it. But when under the influence, never have I thought about committing a crime. Drinking is not an excuse for crime. So to use that against a victim is disgusting. That RBT father states “sexual promiscuity” in his letter….it’s a college. Of course it’s college. But it’s not a reason for rape. There is no reason for rape. Ever. When men say “oh she was asking for it” or “oh did you see how she was dancing” or “look at what she’s wearing”….

If there is no non forced consent….it’s rape. No matter if I walk around naked-in no way am I asking to be raped.

And this idea of treating women badly starts at a young age. People say young girls overreact which they do (I had one student who cried because she drank the soy sauce in our taste test) but in the matter of boys being inappropriate, it’s not such a simple matter. It’s not that boys need to be taught how to respect women. It’s that they need to be taught how to respect everyone. If they learn that then things like rape and hate crime would be less. But we simply brush these things off as “kids being kids”-but that’s not always the case. Just look at bullying. It’s still a major problem today and now with social media (as I was a victim of it myself in high school) it is even a bigger problem.

Now….moving on to something less depressing…..DREAM CONCERT!

Where to begin. Well I had standing with my friends so they wound up getting there super early and stayed overnight. I got there at around 8 in the morning. Thank god it was cloudy most of the day!

We got out tickets and wound up doing fan events for most of our wait time-fan events are Korea KPOP concerts best kept secret. If you don’t know what a fan event is let me tell you. Usually fan sites (like twitter) will post what they are giving away and where and what time though there are random pop up events too. Usually you have to follow them on twitter or something. But if you are there in time you get free stuff. Sometimes you have to be part of the fan club or have the lightstick or a concert ticket but not always. Things they give away are fans with idols faces and names on them, stickers, candy….I even got EXO-K Nature Republic note pad stuff this past time. It’s a hell of a lot of fun and running around and starts quite a few hours before the actual concert -super early if it’s EXO ( I learned this the hard way).

So after all the fan events, and eating a little bit, we got in line and went into the stadium. Last year I was number 190-this year 7…so we basically got to choose where we wanted to stand. We chose the right hand side corner at the very front. It was amazing. We were so close! We were right next to the extrended stage so a lot of the idols that walked by saw us and waved, and when I threw hearts at them they would throw them back. It was insane. Though the line up wasn’t as good my location was so much better so no complaints. At the end the idols were throwing stars with the entire bands signatures and a message on it. Ken from VIXX threw his star at me but…the star was too light and wound up falling in the space between the stage and the barrier. The girl next to me hopped the fence to get it. So mad I didn’t think to do that. And then of course EXO didn’t come to our side of the stage….jus the other side…oh well. I will see them again next Saturday…no to mention…the comeback….I will save that for another day because…yeah.

So that’s it for today. I’m almost done¬† with this semeter’s lessons. Almost every class will enter next week starting the final chapter for this semester.

Show me the money (for this job of wrangling 5th graders)


I know..I’ve neglected this blog for almost 4 weeks now but in all honesty I have some damn good excuses.

Starting with the Mozart Concert/BTS weekend-it took me a week to recover from that and I was barely able to keep up with lesson planning. All I wanted to do was sleep.

Then I got horrendously sick from some sort of nasty virus/infection thing. I was bed ridden for four days though I did at least try to come into work but was quickly told to go home and rest.¬† I almost went to the hospital because my fever hadn’t been getting any better and I almost started to cry in front of my 5-1 class (which is like the worst class).

After that it’s been a lot of money calucating with a ton of events, concerts, visits coming up as a I try to fudge with my budget on what I can and cannot do. It’s hard.

Trying to find a flight that is less than 2000 is a changing game. And because the website is in Korean I can only do so much without needing me co worker to help me. sadly any price I see on the weekend I can’t get because …I’m at home.

Not to mention still dealing with my classes.

Today was a low spot. My first period class didn’t feel like paying attention. Most of them spent the time looking at their desk, looking at the floor. And even when I’m giving them the answer they won’t speak louder than a whisper.

My second period class however was worse. They wouldn’t stop talking, talked over my co teacher (she’s started to become a little more strict but by strict I mean she simply tells them things in a stern voice an that’s it -no consequences) so I had to take control of the class. They were wasting time -we spent 60 of 80 minutes doing basically nothing but a few drills. They either didn’t remember or didn’t feel like reviewing last chapter.

I told them in the beginning of the year that things build upon other things…so they need to ask for my help. What drives me nuts is the students clearly can’t do it, but don’t even bother to ask for help. I can give as much as they need.

I try to remember back to when I was a student-how did I act in the class that I hated the most? (Which was Math by the way). I would have to ask for help because otherwise I would sit there, not know the answer and if I was called on, unable to answer and thus embarassed. And my teachers gave me a lot less help -really expecting me to do the majority of it on my own.

But the students just won’t ask for help. They sit there looking confused or doing nothing until I have to volunteer to come over to help. Most of them have no interest in improving either. At least last year the students that I helped made vast improvements and were quite proud of their accomplishments. This year it seems the trend is to no care. And I guess if you are getting passed and not being grading ,really why should they care? The only thing I can do is keep them after class to finish work they did not do during class. It’s become relatively effective which is good but still the same students¬† sit there knowing they are going to be stuck during break doing their work, instead of asking me for help. It’s Lesson 5-they know better by now. I can’t coddle them like my co teachers.

As for my blog…with all the insanity happening soon I am going to suspend the weekly schedule until I have some free time again to post reguarly.¬† I will do my best to post as much as I can.

Like this weekend…I have Dream Concert! I will get to see VIXX and EXO! My two favorite groups. After that there is a Suwon concert that has Astro, Up10tion Mamamoo (who is also at Dream concert-so excited to see them!) and of course EXO again. That is followed by the VIXX fan meet …and then my friend is finally coming to visit! So my June is already looking pretty packed full so hopefully that will gie me something to write about.

Also I started really getting into this season’s Show me the money 5 – rewatched all of season 4 and even stared season 3 . Some of my students seem to like the show as well-which is on at 11 pm and contains several instances of swearing. #koreanparentingatitsfinest


Here, There, Everywhere


So I forgot about the post yesterday because I was trying to get some new lesson planning done.

Yesterday’s class wound up being quiet difficult. The class has some of the lowest level students and it’s extremely frustrating because it’s split between high level and low level.

My co teacher doesn’t seem too worried about it, but I think if they kids can’t even copy down a simple sentence that I put in front of them (literally copy it word for word) there’s an issue.

This goes back to the idea that English here is not treated as a real subject. When I was learning Spanish or French, that class was required. If I couldn’t pass that class, it was like any other subject. Summer school, after school tutoring, bad grades, extra work etc. But here the teachers just pass on the kids-so now 5th graders who should be able to do basic stuff can’t even do that.

It frustrates me to no end because these kids are so far behind that these lessons aren’t doing anything for them. They aren’t learning anything and they aren’t going to unless they get some serious help. Whoever thought it was a good idea just to pass these kids on so they wouldn’t need to deal with them made a big mistake.

That being said, let’s move on to what Thursday’s post should have been…Lesson Planning.

So a lot of the time the kids don’t want to dive right into¬† English off the bat. They want to talk or fool around for the first few minutes.

So I use warm ups to help them focus. And if they do a good job they get a reward like a sticker for the coupon book or we watch a funny video.

But sometimes you can combine the two.

Next lesson for me is on taste: sour, sweet, salty,spicy.

I would love to have a fun lesson with this but I have 8 classes of 30 students and that can be costly. I bought one Hershey Kiss for each student last year and it proved to be enjoyable but I just don’t have that kind of money.

So I decided this time, I would do a taste test.


-4 paper cups (not clear) Dixie cups

-soy sauce


-lemon juice


I will ask four students to come to the front of the classroom and choose a number between 1-4.

When the students are lined up, I will place the cups in front of them.

1 is filled with coke

1 is filled with soy sauce

1 is filled with water

1 is filled with lemon juice

I will tell the students on the count of three to “one shot” drink the liquid.

Afterwards, the students will show me their face and I will asked them “how is it?” T

They should answer with “It’s salty/sour/sweet/bland.”

Then I will ask “Do you want some more?”
They should answer” Yes please or No thanks.”

Easy warm up, hopefully will make the kids laugh a bit as well.


Since it is FRIDAY: Movies/TV Show

I haven’t been watching too much TV lately and the TV I have been watching acutally has been MLB.

So I’m going to discuss a little about how I got into baseball, why I like it and what it means to me.

A lot of people think girls being into sports means 1 of 2 things: 1. they are manly tomboys who can’t be feminine 2. they are girly girls who just pretend to like it to attract men.

I can tell you both of those statements are BS.

Yes I’m sure there are girls who are one or the other.

But for me and for my baseball loving friends, we are neither. We are people who love the game. We don’t painting our faces or getting a little rowdy at games. We also love to put on a pair of heels and go clubbing (well not me ). We also love to fangirl over KPOP groups.

It’s a small part of who I am. I keep my Orioles jerseys right under my hanging sundresses which are next to my workout leggings.

Of course I went to baseball games as a kid because my parents took me. I went for quite a while through elementary/middle school because our school did a fundrasier of some sort.

But I never grew interest until I was about 16.

I was bored one day and thought to myself that I would watch the O’s game. I thought it might be a conversation starter for my dad. Not that my dad and I aren’t close, but sometimes (when I was younger) I felt like I had no real connection over much.

From that moment, I got really into baseball. Of course I though Brian Roberts was cute and yes I watched at first because of him, but slowly that changed.

I soon was able to name all the teams in each league and which division they were in. I could name all the AL standings and most of the starting players as well. It was a big obsession.

It also allowed my dad and I to grow closer. I always would ask him questions about baseball and soon it became a family event-yes my sports hating mother even will sit and watch while she does her needle point.

Sadly being away from the team for two years has done a lot of damage.

This year I don’t know half of the team and only 2 starting pitchers. But it’s such a part of my summers that I hate being out of the loop which is why I bought myself MLB TV. I hope I can update myself on the roster for each team, and really take a look at the game again. Being away has shown me how much I really missed it.

And so far the O’s are doing great, sweeping Minnesota and at the top of the ALE-though I’m not an idiot-but at least I can be proud of them.

Remember, I got into baseball during the O’s horredous seasons. They didn’t win until 2012. I was a fan in 2006-I had to defend them all the time especially from nasty Nationals fans (UGH) or the newly revived Red Sox fans (calling OPACY southern Fenway is enough to make me make your 7 year old son cry) . I still think back to the 30-3 loss.

So when they had the magical season of 2012 and eventually won the AL EAST later on….it made me so proud.

I’m hoping this season will be better than last year. Joey Rickard seems to be the “new Manny” -bringing his young freshness to the team.

So that’s all for today!

Yes EXO’s anniversary is today! 4 years of EXO though I spent 3 1/2 years HATING them. But they’ve been through so much. 3 members leaving, dating controversy, insane fans, even more insane travel and schedules. As much as I want their comeback, I want them to rest even more. So thank you EXO for 4 amazing years (sorry I didn’t like you for 90% of them) and please take care of your health and happiness!





….that is what my 5-2 class said the entire class…even as they were walking out the door.


Sometimes your students surprise you with just how much they pay attention.

It’s not a secret to my students that I like EXO .

So yesterday and today when the students guessed correctly which subject is my favorite (hint it’s not English) they then proceeded to of course ask “teacher,singer favorite who?”

Then unlike yesterday which was said in a light joking tone, today chaos erupted. Specifically my boy students.

Throughout the entire class the kids kept saying “EXO” or singing their song “XOX” which of course made me laugh.

Then to end the class, I always try to say goodbye to each one as they walk out the door. Today I heard “teacher i like exo too!”¬† “teacher-exo!” “teacher, exo loves you”. Needless to say, I think they now know my weak spot.

Ironically enough it’s the male students, while last year it was mostly female students who wanted to talk EXO (though I did have two boy students who named themselves¬† Chanyeol and Baekhyun which was interesting)

But between their teasing and a fun lesson, 5-2 behaved today.

So far this week my classes have been almost perfect. Which makes me fear tomorrow. My worst class. A new lesson. And a co teacher who thinks the most effective way to tell children not to do something is in a quiet voice say in ENGLISH ‘don’t talk.’ Because any 5th grader who is a talker is going to stop at that…yeah right.

We’ll see how tomorow goes and if 5-3 can behave themselves.

As for today’s topic on modern issues: cell phones

Currently I’m in the market for a new cell phone. I’ve been living happily with my SS galaxay s4 even after¬† I midly cracked the screen…until I really cracked it the other day.

With the current fight between the new galaxay s7 edge and iphone 6 …I have a hard decision on my hands.

I’ve been researching the both of them, and most articles are pitting them against each other with the s7 edge “edging” out the iphone6 (hahaha I’m witty).

But most of the articles also claim that the iphone6 is halfway into it’s peak life span and soon will be replaced by the 7 most likely due out this sepetember.

Well …where do I begin?


I have everything else apple than a phone. Computer, music, ipod-I swear by them.

But I’ve never had the iphone. I think the main reason was when it initially debuted (yes I was alive) it was only through…sprint or at&t….it wasn’t with my carrier which was Verizon. So I never bothered looking at it and never looked back.

But now that I live in Korea I¬† need a phone that is GSM capable and allows for sim card capability. Before my s4 I was informed that iphone was the best choice, but I was a snob (and didn’t have the money!) so I went with my s4 which I’ve loved.

But I’ve heard so many good reports about the iphone6.

I think it would be easier to have all my product the same and if I were to get the 128 gb, eliminating the ipod I would carry (and buy in August when I go back to US for a break).

Design wise I like it much better-I’m probably one of the few but I love the rose gold color.

And of course the “prestige” that comes with having an iphone.

Because I adpat well to technology and have two other apple products, I don’t believe that changing over to iphone will be too much of a hassle.

However I do have a few concerns:

The lowest amount of storage is 16g the same as my ipod nano and current phone. And at that rate it’s expensive for such a small amount of space.

There is the fear that I will hate it after being programmed so long to android.

The galaxy s7 edge is so pretty and new ….I like new and shiny things (which is probably the reason why I have major KPOP bias issues).

Galaxys7 edge:

I do live in Korea…you know the country in which¬† Samsung was born.

It also happens to be the country that makes you bankrupt trying to buy a phone.

It would explain why so many Koreans walk around with severely crack

ed phones.

The s7 has so many great qualities -the best description I saw called it “a beast of a smartphone” and has been herald several times as the best smartphone.

It’s pretty, it’s new, it’s an amazing product.

Though I grew up with motorola (the chocolate was still one of my favorite phones) I switched over to LG and eventually Samsung and have been ever since.

I love the phone and have become very programmed on the ins and outs of it.

I don’t like change and while the iphone maybe simple, I could also very much hate it and wish for my galaxy series back.

I heard the s7 fixes a lot of issues the s6 had as well.

Unlike the apple that charges more for storage space, the s7 only has one size, 32g but the price doesn’t become outrageous.

Some things to worry about:

Because it’s brand new, it’s more expensive.

I still would have to carry the ipod around/not having all my electronics of the same programming and brand.

Not as much prestige as the apple iphone name brand…which shouldn’t matter.

Basic as f**k colors.


So that’s it for today.

Nothing earth shattering. Just a teacher having frustrations about which phone to buy-pathetic first world problems.

The world is full of problems and some people would be grateful for this cracked phone. Yet here I am looking for a fast and easy way to get a new one.

It really makes you think how messed up the world is sometimes.

An English teacher looking for a new phone vs. a person looking to leave their war torn home. The irony is real…I guess in a way it’s it’s own version of the hunger games.

Anyway, I need to go back to my apartment and try to finish cleaning for the fith day in a row while looking at finances.

Tomorrow is music wednesday.


Oh and uh….vixx released their conception art trailer….yeah…more on that tomorrow.

Be Prepared


This is about my weekend…but my weekend basically was….EXO.


If you are not interested in this….see you tomorrow!


So finally…after spending years hating them, then becoming a fan..I finally got to see EXO (full solo concert-two festivals prior)!

I went to the Saturday concert of their Seoul Exo’lution encore.

And it was the best.

My friends and I did fan events-sadly almost everything was Kai and Sehun…so now I have more Sehun that one could ever want in a lifetime.

5 mascots were outside and they were so cute.

Chanyeol mascot bounced like a puppy when someone was petting his face. Sadly it was only Chanyeol, Lay, Sehun, Chen and Baekhyun. And Baekhyun mascot wouldn’t move…he stayed in front of us most of the time…so like the real Baekhyun, mascot Baekhyun became a camera whore.

We got our goods we wanted. We got our lightsticks which are super bright! And then we were all wondering what the hell a “bromide and name tag was” -it became a topic of conversation for about 5 minutes-until finally I just bought one to see what the hell it was. Turns out the “bromide and name tag set” is one of those super nice posters on sturdy paper of whatever member you wanted plus their “name tag”.

After that we did some more fan events and then it was time to head to the concert. Even though we sat in the last row, it wasn’t too bad and they have a bunch of screens all around.

And during certain parts of the concert they came around on “trains” so we could be really close to them.

Even though it was a no pictures type of deal (like most concerts) some people were still able to get pictures. I was mostly absorbed/comatose/in a trance like state the whole time so I had no motor function.

It’s hard to compare to the VIXX concert because they were so different-VIXX I went unwillingly and until about 3/4 of the way didn’t really care what was happening. Whereas EXO I’ve been waiting and waiting for it. Both were amazing in their own ways. And no…I didn’t cry.

The set list I think changed a little because of their December comeback.

There’s not much more to say otherwise I could go on for the entire day. But 1. I don’t want to bore people and 2. I wound up getting sick on Sunday.

I will say this: if you are looking to stay in Seoul and don’t want to shell out a huge price tag for a hotel room, guesthouses are plentiful and for the most part really well managed. I think I will take more about guesthouses on my other page for those who are interested in what they are how they work and which ones I would recommend.

I will say that I did stay at Trick Art Guesthouse (TAG) this time.

So that’s about it for the EXO post. Sorry it wasn’t too long but I really don’t want to start because there would be no stopping.

I will say :

-the fans were really nice for the most part

-the fan events clearly started earlier and if you are interested go earlier

-they performed “Lucky” in animal Onesies….yep

-LAY was there!!

-but poor Kai was injured so he had his crutches and sat in a chair but it was nice to see them all together

-The intensity was insane-I’ve never seen the venue that full or hype before-and I’ve seen Big Bang there

-It was over too soon (though it was 3 hours long)

-even though I said I wouldn’t , I lost my voice and choir the next day was really fun because I wasn’t sure what notes were even coming out at one point

-I saw reports that yellow dust aka sand/pollution/crap from China that comes over every spring had high levels so I think that might have given me this sinus/cold

-EXO’s comeback has been confirmed for this summer though I wish they got a break

-Kyungsoo in black leather jacket….that’s all.

-Even though they were clearly exhausted from their stupid busy schduele, they were still so enthusiastic and hype!

-we went to ravi’s concert venue on sunday to check out fan events…super nice and organized and wound up with way more ravi stuff i would ever want.

Ok that’s the end. I’m going to take some meds and crash in my bed at home!




The nightmare before St. Patrick’s Day


It may be March.

It may be November.

It may be July.

If you ask a Korean student, which American holiday is it today? Chances are, the answer will always be one thing.


I don’t know if kids associate the words “American Holidays” with “Halloween” but that’s the answer I get when I ask about 4th of July, Thanksgiving or even St. Patrick’s day.

But the cute accidental humor did not stop there.

When I asked my 5-5 class this morning, “How’s it going?” showing them a picture of a sun smiling (they learned this as “I’m good.”) one students said “I’m sunny.” which was just so cute and funny and the whole class was amused. He knew better than to think of us as laughing at him and laughing with him.

In my 5-7 class I asked one of my students different ways to say (insert a picture of a person waving to another person in the sense of leaving).

“See you. ”

“Another one.”

“Uh. see you later?”

“Yes, another one.”



“Have a …bye?”¬† It was so cute. “Have a bye.” Even though I do laugh I always remember to tell them “you are so cute” so they know i’m not laughing at their mistake but at how cute they sound.

Due to the fact that it was St Patrick’s Day yesterday (both here and now in America as well for the most part) and I needed 20 minutes to kill I gave the kids a word search they could do in pairs as well as a small (and I mean minsicule) powerpoint on St. Patrick’s Day. I had to best explain this holiday that isn’t anything more than getting drunk for most people to a bunch of 5th graders.

So I showed them where Ireland was, pictures of parades and Shamrock shakes (how I want! they wanted it too) and then the symbols. My explanations went like this.

“This is a shamrock. It’s a plant with 3 leaves. It’s lucky. This is a leprechaun. He’s a green fairy. This is pot of gold at the end of a rainbow. Pot of gold is money.” The end.

Thankfully they understood enough. I’m having to rearrange quite a lot for the kids because of the level discrepancy between last year and this year. Last year I made them sing a song, but this year I thought I would show them something better. I wound up showing them the Lord of the Dance “Lord of the Dance” dance. They seemed really interested in it which was great!

The best part though is no matter what, girl or boy, bad class or well behaved class, they always ask if they can choose their partners for the word search. In our classes the boys always sit next to the girls-this is to help reduce talking. I always tell the boys “trust me you’ll like girls when you’re older”

Today I did have to play “strict” teacher. I had two boys who kept turning around and talking to their friends. The rest of the class actually was pretty well behaved. So I moved the two talkers to the front seats of the class, and gave the class as a whole a warning. Though sometimes it doesn’t work (like when the majority of class is not behaving or caring or is too quiet to stand up¬† to the others) it can be an effective solution. Though one got past his embarrassment and finished the class successfully, the other was mad and proceeded to have a bit of an attitude for the rest of the class.

I asked them both to stay behind after class and told them to please not talk in my class. I didn’t yell at them or try to humiliate them. I simply said I know you’re a good kid but please don’t talk in my class. The one who had gotten past it took it great, the other one still was either salty or embarrassed and answered me with as limited eye contact as possible.

It’s hard because when you have a co teacher that lets your children walk all over you it means you have to be the bad guy and try to scold, or warn the class. And when their language is low, it becomes very hard to get across what I want.

We¬† are going into week 3 and hopefully things will be settling down. I’m still working on getting certain classes to be more vocal which improved slightly this week. Pass the ball really got the kids to speak so I think until I can get them to be more open about speaking, this will have to be a major game that will be included in lessons.

I’m also working on rapport. I have kind of forgotten what it was like not to have any because I became so comfortable with the kids from last year. So I’m still struggling with that. Finding out which students are really poor at English.¬† I’ve gotten the “I’m great at English” students down pat pretty well became they obviously speak up the most.

I also had my classes with my slower students. My 5-2 student seemed much more cogent than what people were telling me. I don’t know if it’s because he loves English but he seemed no slower than any of his classmates.¬† He might have a lot of trouble in his other classes, I don’t know, but English he does really well.

The one who has more of a struggle I spent some time with on Wednesday. His seat partner is the cutest sweetest girl. Together we both helped him start his worksheet. While I still think he should be a school which would actually have him learn something, it is wonderful to see such a sweet student like Do Eun as his seat partner.

Moving onto Friday!

It’s Movies, TV Shows etc mash up!

So I haven’t really seen any new movies for a while. When movies are released here they tend to be here for a really short period of time. So if I like a movie a lot I will try to see it twice within a week or so. Like Jurassic World.

But through a way that I won’t mention on here, I am still able to keep up with my TV shows that I like in the USA. And today’s TV show is …..Rizzoli and Isles.

The season 6 finale just ended on Tuesday with of course a horrible cliff hanger.

But let’s go back.

Rizzoli and Isles is a show that airs on TNT and will have 7 seasons under it’s belt when it finishes. I read that this is a major feat for a cable show.

I started with the show from pretty much the beginning because I saw the commercials and remembered Angie Harmon from Law and Order.

I had been watching Bones and loved the dynamic between the two but it was getting old and then the new set of the rotating interns started after my favorite character was cut out of the show .

It’s a great strong female show without being too much. Yes you have the more feminine classy Maura and tomboy Jane, but they aren’t stuck in those roles. It’s a nice dynamic. Throw in an overbearing Italian mother, an older grey haired pet obsessed cop, a young detective who always gets sick at crimes scenes ) and it’s a really nice cast.

Though there is always a case, it doesn’t feel over burdened by it like SVU. We really get to know the characters and their families which occasionally intersects. The case never compromises the integrity of the characters relationships with each other.

Now at the end of Season (4 I think) one character does leave the show which was a really sad moment. He was a great part of the cast and due to tragic circumstances, his character was written out. He was “replaced” by another character but she was given a slightly different role so we felt that they didn’t try to force a new person on us.

Though I do feel the writing has become a little weaker within the last season, and the character dynamics aren’t as fleshed out as they used to be, I still love the show and look forward to the final season which will probably air in Summer time.

Each season is about 13 episodes long and season 7 the final one, hopefully will wrap a lot up. I am kind of torn between wanting Jane and Maura to end up happily with respective men (I’m rooting for a Maura/Frankie and Jane/Kent ) but at the same time I don’t think they should.

Because happiness isn’t about finding a husband. And I don’t want the writers to feel like they have to find someone to be happy. Especially if these men happen to be random people they just choose out of no where in season 7. But Maura and Frankie have had¬† a little tension in the past. And Kent is like Maura but snarky like Jane so I think they would work out.¬† But if that can’t happen, and the end is just the cast hanging out together that still would be a great ending.

So if you are interested you can probably catch reruns on TNT .

So that’s it for now.

Onto an EXciting weekened. See what I did there? EXO-EXciting? Yes ? No?

I can’t wait I’m so excited! I told my co worker when she asked me if I had plans for the weekend with the weather warming up and so, and I told her that I had tickets for EXO. She laughed and said I was cute like a teenager.

I’ve held off on watching their EXOlution concerr DVD because I want to just see it¬† live first and not ruin any surprise. AHHH! So excited. My friends and I are going early for “fan events”. So I will have to eat a healthy and strong breakfast tomrrow before braving the events! Here’s to hoping I get something Kyungsoo and Chanyeol and Chen and a ton of Sehun and Baekhyun-my album stalkers.

Also with any luck in 3 more hours I will be starting the process of no longer having black hair! I think this is the longest or close to the longest I’ve had one color hair. About 4 and 1/2 months. I want to go light what with the summer coming as well as the fact that i need a major major haircut.

Ok I guess that’s it! Wish me luck at EXO’s concert tomorrow! And prepare yourselves for a crazy monday post-if you are not interested then I suggest you only briefly read Monday’s post.




Forget You


Though today in daycare it definetly felt more like the unedited version F**k You.

I know, I know. I’m a terrible updater and completely forgot to update yesterday. But I have a damn good reason. My co teacher decided to spring it on me that she would be giving the kids a speaking test and I needed a way to fill about 20 minutes.

Luckily I learned last year that word searches work really well.

I’m still trying to adjust to my new kids this year. It’s hard because compared to my students last year they are just so far behind.

And even though I had some kids act out last year, the ones this year are starting much earlier. As well as the fact that my new co teacher doesn’t seem to want to punish them.

The lack of speaking has really crippled a lot of them. They know the answers and write them but damn….

Luckily I used “Pass the Ball” today to try and get the kids to talk. More on this later…it will be today’s lesson plan.

As for my co worker, it’s almost like she’s my assistant teacher and I have to tell her what to do and when to do it.

As for daycare, it seems many of the teachers just want to give up controlling them.

I actually managed to have¬† conversation with one of my colleageus the other day regarding children’s behavior in modern Korea. I’ve talked about it in past posts but it was the first time I really have been able to talk with someone who not only grew up in the slightly older generation and can acknowledge that it’s damaging children.

She said that parents of today’s children grew up too strict so now they want their children to be free to do anything. Sadly that transfers over to schools and classrooms where children are supposed to learn how to behave in social and appropriate settings. I mean…do they expect their kids to act like crazies in the professional world?

So the one extreme of being strict has now transferred over to extreme of unmanageable. Today one of the daycare kids was yelling at his teacher in ŽįėŽßź which is the informal way to talk to someone-something you would never do to your teacher. Another student who should know better than to rudely interrupt two adults when there is no reason to, did so mockingly telling the Korean teacher that she was good at English in Korean.

Another student of mine I was ready to throw him out the window. He’s already caused problems before. And when I was asking the kids before they could leave “how’s it going?” a question they learned to answer for the lesson he completely blew by me and ran out of the classroom-even his more verbally obnoxious classmates (read lout and talkitive) were not that bold.

While one friend said it’s because they want the kids to relax before they get into hard studying, by not caring is doing a diservice to them. They won’t learn conequences of their actions-for example if they don’t do their work in my class they have to stay after-something that really shocked them. They aren’t required to do anything-I learned that they don’t even get graded. And i know that will change in middle school, but if they don’t understand it as young kids, then it’s almost setting some of them up to fail.

I know that American schools aren’t perfect, but the notion that Korean kids are super well behaved and respectful is no longer a reality (the Korean teacher confirmed this for me) and now have been replaced by entitled spoiled children. Yes, while not all of the children are this way, it’s enough to make you want to pull out your hair and shake some of the parents.

Now that that rant is over, moving onto what I missed yesterday.

Yesterday was interesting: aside from one of my more annoying students mocking everything I said (yes he’s in 5th grade and yes my co teacher doesn’t say anything except, “stop it” which the kids don’t care about) the class went better than the previous class. 5-3 still is one of my least favorite classes.

Daycare ironically was good-it seems to be a trade off-daycare is bad, classes are good, classes are bad, daycare is good. which is why I prefer Monday’s and Fridays.

Daycare also really teaches me how grateful that I don’t have to deal with them all day. I see how defeated their teachers are at the end of the day. Daycare always makes me grateful that I teach 5th graders, as annoying and rude as some of them can be. The hugs are nice and they can be cute too. But overall I couldn’t handle more than 5 of them at a time if I had to teach them something.

Now onto MUSIC WEDNESDAY: (which I forgot about….)

So there were many different songs I wanted to do but….since I AM going to the EXO concert on Saturday I figured I have to post an EXO MV.

It was really hard to choose one, but I wound up choosing Promise 2014 off the Love Me Right Repackage, the first EXO album I bought. I. After all the drama with members leaving and everything it just feels so sad when you read the lyrics and listen to it. It’s a really beautiful song anyway you look it. There’s honestly not much more to say about it other than just listen and you’ll understand.


Lesson Planning Thursday:

So this is a game that is always a hit. It’s really simple.

Music starts. Have the students pass the ball around. Music stops. Have the student stand up and answer the question. Of course you can always throw in a “bomb” one and have them do a dance or something.

You can just load it up on power point and if you know how just add the music in. If not I’ve used my phone alarm which made the kids laugh and dance because it was VIXX’s love equation.

It really helps promote speaking as well as makes sure the kids are focusing on what they are doing otherwise they can get “caught”. It also allows you to check students individually-a lot of the times things are in teams which is great but sometimes I like to check for comprehension.

Most likely you’ll have at least one or student who is unable to answer but don’t be afraid to not stop the music on them. Young Jun from last year had the worst English skills out of all my students but after I built up trust with him, I knew that I could stop the music on him and have him stand up. He still wasn’t able to answer without help but he had no problem feeling confident to follow my lead. If I had done that in the beginning of the year he would have not responded at all. So it’s important if you do want to involve lower level students that you make sure they are either comfortable following your prodding or possibly wait until they get to know you a little better and feel comfortable .

I also like to set the rules up before hand: no throwing, no fighting, no putting the ball in your shirt (this has happened before…..). The students tend to really like this game and enjoy it when one of their classmates gets chosen.

I also sometimes do a “1+1” (a common Korean Korean sales promo and the kids know the lingo) if they are both holding the ball or if there is confusion over who is supposed to answer-this also reduces fights.




any kind of ball that’s easy to toss around

So that’s it for today! I will def remember to post tomorrow (if I remember!)

Lose Yourself


Despite the title, this post will be less 8 Mile and more me on how I my emotions/health/mind went 8 Mile in the USA.


If you’ve been following my past few posts you would know about how I thought I had a relationship ending fight with my mother.¬† Thanks to my father, my mom and I “calmly discussed” (haha yeah right) what went down and why.

I won’t bore you with the details but we salvaged the final day and our relationship. I’ve always been a volite angry person and become spiteful, vengeful during fights.

But after suffering through a stomach flu (and now the $950 hospital bill thanks no insurance/Korea not covering foreign hospitals) a huge ass fight, a 3ft snow storm, and various other things….I will say the past few days have been hard being back.




I really wanted to do a post on the differences about coming to Korea 1 year ago and now, as well as differences at home.


I’d say the first difference is that I felt I could handle it. I did the flight, slept in SF and arrived at night just like last time.¬† But this time I felt comfortable in the airport. I knew where I needed to go, what I needed to do and felt less fish out of water and more fish in water (is that weird).

Because of the time last year, I had to spend a night in a hotel when I arrived in Korea and felt so displaced and out of body.  This time I managed to get back to my apartment * more on that annoyance later* on public transportation like it was nothing. The difference a year makes.


Another major difference would be the fact that I was so interested what was new and difference that I didn’t miss things from home that much (aside from small homesickness episodes here and there). However, this time I realized how much I missed and was sad that I didn’t get to get to it all.¬† I have in my mind all the things that I still want/need but due to timing, couldn’t.¬† Korea isn’t shiny and new this time- I hope this wears off and I’m not disillutioned by Korea anymore or the fact that it’s FREAKING COLD!

Even thought Baltimore got 3 feet of snow, Korea has been having 12 degree weather and I want to die.


So the apartment disaster. I had gotten a text from my co teacher telling me they changed the locks and where I could get the new key. However, they didn’t think that I would be back at 10 pm at night and there was no way for me to get to the key.¬† So there I was, standing at my aparmtnet after a 13 hour flight, 2 hour bus ride and 5 dollar taxi ride.¬† If I wasn’t so tired, and actually had many other palces to stay I would have cried.

Luckily I had to house  sit for a friend anyway and just headed over a night early.


As for dealing with the jetlag…..well let’s back up.


I never fully adjusted to EST.¬† I still was waking up super early and taking a long 3 hour nap in the middle of the day.¬† My last day there I was almost on track…but then I left for San Franciso for a day layover…which didn’t really affect me too bad -I just woke up super early and went to bed super early.¬† But now that I’m back on KST…I’m waking up super early, taking hours long naps at around 7pm, all of this while dealing with the dogs I’m sitting for.¬† Normally they are great and I love them so much but after spending two weeks with my dog Logan who was born with perfect training (I can’t believe how much my family and I take it for granted…we are spoiled by him and don’t realize that this isn’t normal) and suffering from major sleep deprevation…they are annoying.


Luckily Korean/Lunar/Chinese New Year is this week so I get a 6 day weekend and will have time to do nothing.¬† Hopefully sleep will improve, my mood will improve, and overall I will feel better about the fact that I gained weight in America from eating (don’t laugh…it’s serious)

Today was also my final first year day! Even though we have two more days next week it’s just graduation.¬† I feel sad about it but was glad that I got to see my favorite class one last time.¬† When I told them it was our last class they were thinking that I was leaving but then I told them they are going to be sixth graders and I only teach 5 grade.¬†¬† I’ve already done a review of each class, but as an overall year, it was definitely educating and interesting.

I still am not sure what kind of teacher I am-I know I’m not the strict kind, not the walk all over friend….I guess I want to be the kind of teacher that I respected and loved so much…sadly those were teachers who were in my high school and college years.¬† They were somewhere between a cool friend and someone I respected.¬† I guess I’m still learning and will continue to.


Now on a completely UNRELATED topic, the fact that EXO is having an encore Concert here in seoul in March is exciting but the fact that tickets are like the hardest thing in the world to get isn’t.¬† So in light of that fact, I will simply leave this awesome mash up of two songs I love which I never would think would mash well.