Sound of Vitality

Blowin up Haengsin-dong. Holla!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Classroom tales

Sometimes the classroom can get very uncomfortable. Yesterday in one of my very young classes there was an exercise where you had to match the word and image 'pants' with a little cartoon boy only wearing a t-shirt and underwear, and 'skirt' with a little cartoon girl wearing a t-shirt and underwear. The children were scandalized. The boys especially. They were mortified/laughing while desperately covering the image on their own workbook, and trying to knock the other boys covering theirs to force them to look. I rushed through that one so we could turn the page and get on with it. The only word I understood amidst the hysterical Korean was 'panty'.

This incident made me recall an incident a couple weeks ago I'd blocked out. A particularly precocious little girl asked me, 'Teacher, what kind of panty you?' I wasn't sure I heard her right. 'Teacher I have flower, what kind of panty you?' Oh my god. I was like, 'Listen kid, I can't begin to tell you how wrong this is.' She was confused. 'Ahniyah! (NO!)'

The kids here have the best notebooks. The covers are insane and often plastered with disparate bright images, out of context English quotes and then just downright bizarre English. I finally bought a bunch of them today. I present to you my first installment of Korean notebooks, 2 side by side. Chocolate bong bong! Um ~ Smell ~

I urge you to click on the above image and explore closer.


  1. "Remembrancer." The holiday to remember those we lost to cancer.

  2. "if you make it to dessert and you must prepare yourself for ecotasy" they must be refering to eco-friendly pastrys laced with extasy.

  3. dark or white? since when is dark a color?

    I suppose this is debatable. I can understand how translating it can be confusing.

    "The answer to this question is one of the most debated issues about color. Ask a scientist and you'll get the physics reply: “Black is not a color, white is a color.” Ask an artist or a child with crayons and you'll get another: “Black is a color, white is not a color.” (Maybe!?)"

  4. You should take pictures for!