Archives for posts with tag: Teaching English in Korea

This is Joey.  I will always and forever hold this kid in my heart. He was my 7th grade English student, my music buddy, and a little Korean brother all in one.

Joey can best be described through one of my first conversations with him, upon arriving as a teacher in South Korea.

Teacher Stephanie:  Joey, what are you thinking about when you’re spacing out during my class?

Joey:  Oh, I talk to John Lennon’s Spirit.

Teacher Stephanie:  Really?!??!

Joey:  Yeah.

Later when he is staring off into space:

Teacher Stephanie:  Joey, what is he saying to you?

Joey:  Who, Lennon?

Teacher Stephanie:  Yes

Joey:  Oh, he said to me he said, “Joey!  Shut the fuck up!”


So yeah, that’s Joey.  And Joey turned out to be as awesome, if not more, than this ridiculous dialogue displays.  He has a true passion and gift for playing the guitar, particularly in the style of blues and jazz, and a genuine love for quality music.  He’s already doing shows in bars and small music venues, and he’s only 15.  I’m so proud of him!  He always e-mails me links to youtube videos of Jimi Hendrix, John Legend, Mike Stern, and Wayne Krantz, to mention a few. Here’s an excerpt from a recent e-mail I got from him, going nuts over blues music:


Ah!! Do you know whoes Mr. Bush?
tall teacher who came from chicage as like ya..
i play guitar for worship service with him and dude..
Wow!! How Chicago! i heard from him that
many people in chicago listen to Blues music
since they born. and i talked with him about music
and he knows about many Blues Artists,
Aug!! i want to go to BluesRock Club of Chicago!!
i promise you that when i become professional someday..
i will write better songs then John Mayer’s and play them in
Club in Chicago and invite you and your Brother or All of your Family:)
and give you the Proud of me.
i love YOU 🙂
oh.. sorry i was talking to BLUES not ms. stephanie..”
Haha.  Apparently not only does he talk w/ John Lennon’s spirit, but also to blues music. Anyway, I can’t wait til the day he plays live in Chicago and gives me the Proud of him.  😉
Alright, and now for some pictures!
This is from when I took him, with some of my church friends, to an Eastern Orthodox Monastery south of Seoul.  I brought some head scarves and he was having fun wrapping himself in them before we left.

(He brought out the true kid in all of us)

On another occssion, since Joey loves music so much, I let him meet up with my musician friend, Austin, and I up at Hongdae one friday night.  (Hongdae is art and music central in Seoul…it’s also club central, but I obviously didn’t take him to any clubs.) He texted me and found out that I was in Hongdae w/ a friend, so I told him he could join us if he wanted.  After getting his mother’s permission, he rode an hour out on the subway by himself to meet us!  It was a really fun night of wandering around (he was too young to get into any places w/ live music…aaaand thanks to my awesome navigation skills we actually were lost the entire time, so by wandering I mean we walked around in a huge loop fifty times for like 3 hours…which was actually more fun than it sounds like cuz we were just having a good time enjoying each others’ company). Joey and Austin hit it off so well, they got together for a jam a couple of days later and did some jazz and blues improv stuff.  I even joined in and sang a few numbers! Anyway, here are a couple pics of Joey in front of a cafe in Hongdae called, “Joey’s Cafe.”

At the end of the night, the sky graced us with the heaviest downpour I have ever experienced in my life! We were completely drenched with acid rain by the time we found our way back to the subway, but it sure was an adventure to remember.  And of course, Joey is a student that I will always and forever remember.


To be honest, I was super relieved when my teaching contract ended.  But it’s been a few weeks now since I’ve seen my beautiful students’ faces (and a few months since seeing them in person), and I’m really starting to miss them.  ㅠㅠ

Today’s post tells the story of when I held a party at my officetel for Teacher’s Day, and my beautiful cake turned from this:

To this:

I’ll let the pictures tell the story…

Let’s just say, best $30 ever spent on a cake.

I love my students!!!!

For the sake of clearing up any confusion that may arise, I shall explain my teaching in Korea situation.  Even though I just finished teaching my students in Korea this past week, I’ve actually been back in the States for several months now. Oddly enough, I taught the first half of my contract in Korea, and the second half over webcam on the internet.  I don’t recommend it. But I do have pictures. Here are some screen shots I took while teaching over Skype.

This is Joey, one of my all time favorite people in the world.  He was in my 7th grade English class.

Apparently Jimmy let Mary give him a makeover, so he was showing off his new look to me before class started.

(Yes, that is a boy.)

This is a picture of my 6th graders reading their Kid’s Times Newspapers.

Hmmm…Seems like Justin was having some trouble…and is Sarah sleeping?!?!  ::sigh::

I surely miss them, but I’m glad it’s over.  Teaching classrooms of kids on the other side of the world late at night is not the ideal job.  But it was worth it, because I love these kids so much!!!

**Photos taken with Shift+Command+3 on my MacBaby

**No edits

One of the first things I did with my 6th grade homeroom students (besides study) was take them to pizza and a 노래방 (Karaoke room).  It was hard to agree on a date, because all of my kids wanted to study on their Friday nights.  (??? Yeah, Koreans are weird like that.)  But once we did set down a time, we sure had a blast.

Peter & Jimmy going crazy over pizza

K-popping their little hearts out

See Video Here

Have you ever experienced the blissful awesomeness of Korean karaoke?

**Pictures taken with a friend’s Canon PS SD1100IS

**Edited in iPhoto

Ended chapter, “Teaching English in Korea,” today.  Here are a few of my many wonderful students whom I spent the past year teaching and loving.






Justin & Daniel


I shall end this post with an e-mail that my student, Mary, sent me today. Ironically, she was the one who stuck her tongue out at me last week because I scolded her for doing her makeup in class despite several warnings.

“To my lovely teacher   Miss.Stephanie….
I think I will miss u a lot…
I was really happy, because your always with me…
I cannot believe to day we finish our last class…
I cannot show you with my action, but I really like you so much….
Thankyou for being my teacher….
Its really last?? bye bye lets see in America…”

Yes, Mary, you sure don’t always show it with your actions, but I like you, too, and I *think* I will miss you a lot as well.


Cameras: Canon PS SD 1100; Mary’s pic was taken with Canon Powershot SD 780

%d bloggers like this: