New job! Kindy here I come.

My, my ~ how time flies. I’ve already been in Korea for 2 years and a bit at this point. I got in a pretty comfortable routine with things. I really felt a need for a change though. Teaching at an English camp gets a bit, well, repetitive. So I’ve recently changed from my position at Daejeon Educational Training Institute to a kindergarten in my neighborhood. Kind of a big jump from 13-15 year olds to 5-6 year olds! In general, I’d been lucky in the past to have the majority of my students have a decent understanding of English. I’m a little worried about going from that to kids who will barely understand me. But gosh darn it they’re so cute and itty-bitty!

One major improvement is that I can walk to work in under 10 minutes. My last job I had to take a shuttle bus every morning at around 8:10 am. And if you miss the bus, boy, are you in trouble! It’s the only one, so if you’re late then the options are to quick call a co-teacher and beg for a ride, or take public transportation. The subway wasn’t so bad, but the only bus that went near work only came every 30-45 minutes. So it’s either a 30 minute shuttle bus ride or maybe 1+ hours on public transport. Blegh.

Also my hours are pretty decent. Walk in at 10 am, leave around 3:30-4 pm. I’m not a morning person at all so this is nice for me. My lunch hour is drastically reduced, however, from about 1 hr to about 20 minutes. Oh well.

Luckily there’s another native English teacher who happened to work at the kindergarten about a year ago. We’ll be splitting up the kiddies. I get the 5 & 6 year olds. Although that’s Korean age so really they’re 4 & 5.

I feel like I’m starting all over! At my old job there really wasn’t any lesson planning or the types of things EPIK teachers usually do. I’m not EPIK anymore, so I feel like I have a lot of trial and error ahead of me.

If anyone is wondering how I found a job on my own: Facebook. Really. A friend knew I was going to be looking for a new job and saw a post on a Daejeon Facebook group from the kindergarten. I set up an interview, sent my resume, and here I am. I was actually working with my recruiter that helped me get here in the first place (Canadian ConnectionΒ fyi), but I ended up finding this mostly myself. So don’t count out Facebook as a resource. Usually there’s groups set up for a city or province so you can get help from other teachers if you have questions.

I don’t meet the kiddies until Tuesday, so I suppose I’ll eventually report back how things are going. Really hoping for a fun school year. πŸ™‚

Where I Work

Every time I explain where I work and what I do I get all kinds of looks, and I’m told I work in “that crazy place/school”. I also get asked, “How did you end up there?”. I really have no idea. Luck or something I suppose.

My friend Kelan is the first to tease me about my job. At the end of EPIK training everyone gets a packet with their school assignment. One of the previous teachers here contacted me before training and told me I may end up where he was. Out of curiosity, I tried to find any information about the place. Only one bit of info in English existed and believe me it was not a good report. However, this is proof that you should take things on the internet with a grain of salt. Anyway, when I got that info packet at training I almost started crying. That old report I had read did not paint a pretty picture and I was terrified I would hate my job. Oh me of little faith.

Cut to July and I really do enjoy my job. I work with great people which makes all the difference. Yeah, I don’t get the variety I would like, but it gives me less planning and more free time (well, sometimes… it varies). So I guess what I want to say is a) don’t believe everything you read on the internet and b) don’t worry too much about the school you’re going too. Chances are you’ll end up worrying over nothing like me.

Walk in Banpo

The weather today was absolutely gorgeous, so I went on a walk to the market with a couple co-workers. Now, my workplace is on the outskirts of Daejeon, technically in Gongju. There’s a small village at the bottom of the hill our workplace is on, and the nearest market is a 25-30 minute walk. We couldn’t resist though! Felt nice to stretch our legs even if it was a bit warm today.

Spotted these couches under the underpass. Comfy way to wait for the bus I guess!

Hello, little sprouts!