074May 2012 031

After graduating from University with a degree in English Literature in 2008 I was left with a huuugee gap and such confusion on what I should do next. Since leaving University I have had seven jobs, I moved from York to Newcastle in 2009 to be nearer my boyfriend and to find a new career path tried to get on a Primary PGCE (teaching course) but wasnt succesful and in 2011 I worked in a call centre until I finally snapped and decided to go and teach abroad.

I wish I had done it straight after University as it was a fantastic opportunity to see the world and earn money doing a job I enjoyed. I went through an agency called Flying Cows (http://www.flying-cows.com) all you need is a degree then fill in the application online and wait for a school to choose you. The agents through Flying Cows communicated with the school and within a month I had a phone interview with Avalon English Academy with the Headteacher Kenny. Kenny asked some basic questions about my experiences and the question ‘What do you think about the quote “When in Rome do as the Romans do” means? He wanted to ensure I would follow the Korean cultures and work ethics and not expect western ideas.

I got the job and the school was in Daegu the 3rd largest city in South Korea, the school paid for my flights and my apartment. Within 3 months of applying I was in Korea August 2011.

The school was an after school academy in which children would finish school at 2/3pm and then start their Academies at 3/4pm. There are academies for every school topic and the parents would pay for their children to go in order for them to achieve the best school grades so they would attend the best universities and then have a good career. These children would sometimes attend 3 academies a night and then have to finish homework every evening. They were often tired and grumpy with the amount of work they would have to do, which was heart breaking.

I loved the children they were funny and naughty which made every day a pleasure to teach them. I taught them Reading, writing and speaking for ages 7-13 year olds with various abilities. Having never taught before it was relatively simple to jump in to because you were provided books to work from, the difficult task was making the lessons interesting and fun whilst having everything covered in the books all in 40 minutes.

May 2012 021 last week 074

It was a fantastic experience and I got to explore so much of South Korea and save enough money to pay off some debts back home. I will probably do another entry on South Korea in the future as it has been such an influential part of my life.