This is far and above the most intense schedule I have ever experienced. Our mornings start at 8 with breakfast, but I’ve been getting up around 5:30 or 6:00 to do my Bible study and stretch and workout. I’m really trying to start this year off well and establish good habits that will hopefully carry on into my life back in the States. Then at nine we have Korean language classes – for 4 straight hours. We get an hour for lunch, and then we’re back in class at 2:00 for teaching workshops. They cover all sorts of topics – gender biases, classroom management, staying healthy in Korea, handling issues with your host families… – but the one thing they all have in common is that they last allll afternoon – usually until around 5. I have half an hour to squeeze some studying in, and then it’s off to Taekwondo every day from 5:30-6:30.
I get half an hour for dinner, and then I’m off again. Monday nights I have Calligraphy class from 7:00-9:00, and Tuesdays and Thursdays I’ve got GLEE club, the foreign exchange club – a great way to meet Korean friends!! Wednesdays and Fridays I have off after dinner, but then it’s time to hit the books – 4 hours of class every day equates to a heck of a lot of studying. Plus we have tests every Monday, and more workshops and classes on the weekends, so I’ve got to get a head start on my homework early in the week.
Next week it gets even tougher! I have to start creating and submitting lesson plans for an English immersion camp that we’ll be teaching the week after as a part of our orientation training. I’ll have 3 lesson plans to prepare and give on my own – yikes!! I seriously have no idea when I’ll have time to make my lessons. I’m so busy, sleep is already on the verge of becoming optional. But I suppose it’s good – it keeps me busy and distracted, so I can try to forget how much I miss home sometimes.
The food doesn’t help really help me forget. It’s very tasty, but man, what I wouldn’t give for lasagna and breadsticks!! It’s astonishing to me that Koreans can eat the same thing – white rice and kimchi – over and over and over and over again, and not get tired of it. There are some variations , especially with the kimchi, and they add different side dishes (I had squid and anchovies today!), but it’s basically the same thing every single day, breakfast, lunch, and dinner. But hey, I’ve gotten really good at using chopsticks!! I’ve been forcing myself to use them at every meal, and the hand cramps have finally started to go away. Now I can finally eat again without having to think!
Well anyway, I’ve got to get up tomorrow at oh-dark-hundred – we’re going to different schools around the region to shadow teachers in Korean classrooms, so we can kinda get a feel for it before we get there. I’m super excited, but bed is calling me right now. I’ll try to write again as soon as I can. I love you!!