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Jeollanamdo Portfolio

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S: Jeollanamdo Summer English Camps 2012 ~ Jessica Crandall

FC: Jeollanamdo Summer English Camps SGS 484-3 Credits-Summer 2012 Jessica Crandall

1: Table of Contents | Safety Knowledge Signatory Page. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Resume. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6-7 Personal Statement. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8-9 Journals. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12-19 Reflection Paper. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22-25 Schedules . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28-31

3: Safety Knowledge Signatory Page | I, Jessica Crandall have read and understand the issues discussed in the "Global Safety Tips for Traveling Abroad." Student Signature: Date: 7/13/12 Student Printed Name: Jessica Crandall Student ID# 1203563096 | 3

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5: Resume | 5

6: Jessica M. Crandall (814) 441-8090 jessica.crandall@asu.edu OBJECTIVE: To acquire employment and valuable workplace experience EDUCATION: The Pennsylvania State University 2008-2010 B.A. English Major GPA – 3.78/4.0 Study Abroad: Seoul, South Korea; ICBEIT conference Arizona State University 2010-Present B.A. English Barrett Honors College Study Abroad: Jeollanam-do, South Korea: Summer Camp Educator EXPERIENCE:The Pennsylvania State University Light and Sound Technical Assistant 2008-2009 Ran light board for school-sanctioned events Assisted in light organization and set-up Ensured proper microphone placement and functionality Box Office Attendant 2008-2009 Answered phones and responded to customer queries Supervised Art galleries Artfully arranged food for gallery openings Handled ticket sales and oversaw finances Organized and distributed notices to extensive mailing list Personal Assistant 2009-2010 Consistently organized working space Assisted in work-oriented projects Filed information Coordinated calendar and managed appointments Handled phone inquiries Research Assistant 2009-2010 Helped identify viable sources for research Enhanced speed of documentation Edited completed works | 6

7: Daycare Provider 2010 Enhancing child Development through Reading, play, and other stimulating activities Baby’s Burgers and Shakes Soda Jerk 2010 Specialization in the making of drinks and desserts Waitress 2010 Customer relations Restaurant tidiness Joe’s Crab Shack Waitress 2010 Customer relations Restaurant tidiness HONORS AND ACTIVITIES: Dean’s List, Academic Achievement Treasurer, Resident Hall Association of Penn State Altoona Events Planner/Drama team leader, Students About Living Truth Alpha Lambda Delta Community Outreach Award recipient LIFE house LIFE house flag-football team Global Village Resident P.R./Media Relations Officer, Raq al Sha’ams VOLUNTEER WORK: The Rock- an after-school program for children in the community, St. Vincent de Paul community service center, Devils in Disguise day of service, Talent Match-matching Honors student mentors with at-risk middle school students, Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Walk, No Kid Hungry Fundraiser, 30 Hour Famine, Crop Walk, Rotary 4-way speech contest participant, Blood Drive volunteer, Waitress for annual church dinners INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL: Brazil, England, South Korea, Mexico, Canada SKILLS: Basic office skills, including Microsoft Office Fast learner Comfortable interacting with people | 7

8: Personal Essay (Statement of Purpose) My name is Jessica Crandall, and I believe that I am a perfect fit for this program. During my time at Penn State, I had the opportunity to work at the Child Development Laboratory. This was an incredible experience that offered me the chance to pursue my passion for working closely with domestic and international children. Many of the kids were children of the diverse faculty—over 10 languages were represented! I found this experience to be both challenging and incredibly rewarding. Fortunately, I was well prepared for my time there. As a former Sunday School teacher, I have extensive practice dealing with restless children who have been separated from their parents. While both my Sunday School classroom and my daycare experiences found me working with young children, generally Pre-K age, I do have some experience with older age groups. For a year I volunteered with a local outreach program called the R.O.C.K (reaching our community kids), where I weekly led a group of middle school kids in safe, fun activities designed to keep them off the streets. | 8

9: I have also recently volunteered with the Barrett Honors College Talent Match program—a program where a student mentor weekly meets with a middle school student and shares a talent with them. I am really looking forward to this program. I will be graduating in the spring in English Literature with an International Studies certificate and a TESOL certificate. In order to graduate by that date, I will need to have completed an internship for my TESOL, and I believe this program will satisfy that requirement. Furthermore, I fell in love with Korea and its culture when I visited two years ago. Since that time, my college experience has been aimed towards the goal of teaching in South Korea after graduation. I taught myself how to read Hangul with the help of a South Korean friend, a skill I believe will be very useful while working in Korea. I also volunteered to live in the Global Village so that I could expand my international relations. I was able to spend an entire semester living with a South Korean student who was studying abroad. All of this has helped prepare me for teaching English in Korea; however, all the preparation in the world is unequal to the learning which comes from experience. I’m still learning, and I believe that this program is the final step I need before making a two to four year teaching commitment after graduation. Thank you for your time and consideration. | 9

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11: Journals | 11

12: 7/25/12 Jeollanamdo- First Steps Jeollanamdo is the southernmost province of South Korea. It is a rural area and the Government is willing to provide lots of money in order for Jeollanamdo to improve itself- and that includes flying native teachers out for a series of summer camps. The area is beautiful. We have just completed our training at Dongshin University and have recently arrived at Wando. Dongshin was nice. The cafeteria smelled truly awful, but we took it in stride. I feel sorry for the students who have to stay there for their first camp- my group's new cafeteria smells significantly better. While at Dongshin we went over the lesson plans provided for us, were paired up with our co-teachers, and were able to make friends with the other students. Because we were all split into separate camps, the only time to truly interact with the students from the other schools was through orientation. The orientation was well put together. Most of the speakers they had training us were actual English teachers employed by Jeollanamdo. Their presentations were funny and interactive, so I felt more engaged with the material. I did not feel like I was adequately prepared to take on a classroom afterwards, but I believe that confidence will come with the actual experience of teaching. I'm a little concerned about some of the lesson plans. They don't appear to be either engaging or challenging. Furthermore, some of the material is, well, odd. I will be teaching convenience store first, and one of my matching exercises has the students looking for "dried fish" and "chocopies." Both of these items are generally exclusive to Korean convenience stores, and I would imagine if my Korean student were in a Korean convenience store, they would probably not be speaking English. Also, they have the students working in Korean money. I think I will incorporate dollars into my lessons. Once again, I feel if they are in a position where they are using Won, they probably won't be speaking English. One fun thing we did during orientation was attend a mud festival. It was fun to see the celebration and to watch the Korean people playing tug of war in the mud. What was not as much fun was playing it ourselves. The experience was certainly unforgettable, and I am thankful to have been able to experience it; however, I felt like it did not meet certain expectations. For example, we were told we needed to participate because there was a monetary prize- that was only true for the Korean teams actually playing. We were told we would be given shirts and shoes- also not true. Some of the students got shirts- but they did not have enough for everyone and told the Korean co-teachers that they could not have any at all. The biggest problem though would have to have been the shoes. All we were told is that we were to participate in the "mud olympics." We each had a different image in our minds as to what this would be. I personally imagined a large rubber pool filled with mud. The reality was we were on a sea bank where the tide had gone out. Since we were not informed as to the nature of the olympics, many people wore flats or flip-flops, but we weren't concerned because we thought we would be receiving shoes. Because the mud was so deep and no shoes were available, many of the students had to go barefoot- it was that, or lose your shoes to the mud. The problem with this was that because it was a sea shore, there were sharp rocks, shells and crabs all about. Most of the students ended up with scratches or cuts of some nature. We were lucky that no serious injuries occurred. Because we all came through it safely we all gained a very memorable experience, but perhaps next time we might opt to simply watch and enjoy everyone else. Today was the first day of class at Wando. Fortunately, I now have clothes. The airport broke the handle on my one suitcase- the top is missing and it will not go down at all. This bag had almost all of my teaching supplies, so broken or not, I was happy to have it. My second bag I had as my carry-on, but I ended up having to check it. It had almost all of my clothes, and the airline lost it. I spent four days with almost no clothing. Luckily for the group picture/meet the Vice-Governor meeting during orientation one of the other girls was willing to lend me clothes. It might have taken some time, but I am so thankful to finally have my clothes again. I didn't realize how much I took such small things like clothing for granted. | 12

13: The students are now writing in their journals as I work on mine. The organizational structure is much different here. Everything I hear, I hear "through the grapevine." I find out about meetings as they are happening- it keeps me on my toes. Wando is awe inspiring. I saw the stars from the rooftop last night and they were simply breathtaking. I don't think I have ever seen such beautiful stars. The students are so smart and so full of life. I just finished watching a group of boys playing an energetic game of soccer with a bottle and some old goal posts. They were so entertaining and seemed to be having so much fun. I forgot how much energy young boys have! Even without their phones, their cable, their tv, etc. they still have so much fun. It was very refreshing to see. I also had a great time with my kids during game time. They were so bored with the questions and to be honest, I was both bored with the students and for them! They were playing "Kaboom!" and the questions for the elementary and the middle school camps were both the same. My kids kept asking me, "Do they think we are babies?" Because I could see them becoming restless, between their turns we played a silent Korean hand game that translates into "007 Bang." The questions were much too simple for their level, and by playing with them I was able to see just how smart my kids are. I hope I can keep ahead of them! Being middle-schoolers they lack motivation and I am having a hard time figuring out how to motivate them. I hope they will loosen up a bit as the camp continues. | 13

14: 8/1/12-8/3/12 At Death's Door Well, I wanted my experience at the camps to be memorable, and my time here at Wando has certainly been that. Right now a majority of our camp has become quite sick, myself included. We have been this way for quite a few days now. Many of the teachers have started showing symptoms and the kids are absolutely miserable. As many of them with parents who could come to take them home have already left. I first started noticing myself becoming ill during the student's showcase. My kids' skit was almost last, but I wanted to stay to see them perform- besides the fact that I was in the skit myself! A few students in my class got sick and had to go home, so I was filling in. I started feeling feverish during the first few performances, and it only got worse from there. After the showcase I was able to go lay down for awhile, only to have to get up again to comfort some of the girls from my class. Our skit did not go well at all and as the lead, one of the girls was nearly devastated. I went up to her room and talked to her for awhile, then tried to go back to bed. Finally, I ended up going to the Korean teacher's room. This had become the main nursing station. One of my fellow teachers confirmed that I was burning up at that point- and given my past experiences with illness I would have given myself to be over 100. They brought me an icepack and I asked for some toast to eat or some juice to drink. They thought this was quite strange! In Korea they eat watered down rice to settle their stomachs- not toast. They thought asking for toast or plain bread was a very odd request. They also did not recommend me drinking juice. They communicated that it was very unhealthy and that I should have some barley tea instead. Unfortunately I cannot drink tea on an empty stomach without becoming violently ill, but I wasn't sure how to communicate that, so I just kept insisting that I would take my chances on the juice. I have since been told to stop drinking the water here* and to only drink the tea, but because of my digestion I cannot risk it. I haven't eaten a complete meal in at least 2 days, so it's risk the water or dehydration. I'll pray over it and continue to take my chances. (I've already gotten stuck on the stairs once. Thank goodness our JLP was there to rescue me!) Yesterday was interesting- the Korean version of the CDC came into our camp and interviewed/took stool samples from all of the children. They interviewed the teachers, but they didn't seem that concerned over our symptoms. The general consensus was that the students all received food poisoning and the teachers were passing a cold from one person to another. I couldn't believe them! It was also the camp's thinking that the children got sick because the air conditioning was on and because they were eating ice cream after hot food. Last I checked that was not how illness worked in America, but perhaps Korean digestion is different? Anyway, last night my fever broke and I started to feel much better- for about 2 hours. Then the abdominal cramps and the frequent trips to the restroom set in. It seems my "cold" has left and I now have what the students have. Either way, I am sick of being sick. I missed an entire day's worth of classes, and I don't want my students to remember be looking as awfully sick as I do now. I can tell that they're worried about me and it really bothers me that I can't at least pretend to be feeling better until it is time for them to go home. I would have given almost anything to have been able to put my sickness off until the break between camps. I am grateful though. Because I was on the top bunk in our room and didn't feel up to climbing in and out of bed I have almost completely adjusted to the Korean habit of sleeping on the floor. My Korean-American roommate informs me that sleeping in this manner is incredibly good for my back, so hopefully this skill will hold me in good stead in the future. It's been a few days. We said good-bye to all of the middle school students. I didn't realize how much I would miss them. I have been doing the beach stay for my 3 day break. We've been staying in the Women's Plaza, and it is so nice. Maybe that's just compared to Wando, but I am so happy to be here. We still don't have real showers, but are rooms are so relaxing. The showers here are actually something I have had to get used to. They are these shower heads that are attached to cables next to the sink, and then there is just a drain in the floor. So essentially during shower time, your whole bathroom becomes the shower! I've discovered that if you crouch down "Korean style" you can keep from making too much of a mess, but I don't know that anyone else has figured this out yet since our bathroom is almost continuously soaked. Still, it's nice to be taking a break. The doctor who said that the teachers all had colds is traveling with the group, and he's been giving me medicine. I didn't actually get to go to the beach. I stayed behind to rest and ended up watching Thomas the Tank engine instead. It was fun getting to flip through Korean cable. I think the channel I landed on was designed specifically for foreigners raising families in Korea. | *Apparently the phrase "Don't drink the water" is used for good reason. Interestingly enough, we have since learned that there was, indeed, a fungus in our water dispensers. Why was Jessica so sick for so long? Now we know. | 14

15: I suppose I shouldn't have been surprised by the idea of a country devoting a channel to just foreigners, but I kind of was. Most of the other cartoons were dubbed over in Korean. Some of the other shows also surprised me. I found a show about a man explaining math principles, and another showing an English lesson that was being taught in Korean. This took me by surprise because in America, TV has become all about entertainment, and very rarely concerns education. There are of course documentaries, and the children shows have the potential of being educational, but the closest thing I've discovered to an adult sitting down in front of the TV for a lesson has been a TED Talk. A show that was also a lesson just wouldn't be popular in the United States. Literally, it just showed a man and a chalkboard/whiteboard teaching- that's all. Most Americans would be bored to tears by that. Where are the graphics? The cool videos? What's the point? It was a great view into the Korean emphasis towards education. We will be going to teach the elementary camps soon. I can't say I'm entirely looking forward to it. Honestly, right now I'm just sick of being sick and I'm in that place where I feel like I will never be well again. I know that's not true, but I am far more acquainted with my restroom than I ever wanted to be and...well, I'm tired. I know I keep saying that, but it's the story of my life right now. I keep telling myself I can't feel gross forever and once I start feeling better everything will be fine and I'll start really enjoying myself again. Until then, I 'm just going to keep pushing through. I still want to experience everything Korea has to offer, and I'm not going to let an illness stand in my way! | 15

16: 8/5/12-8/10/12 The Young of Yeongam Ah, the joys of Yeongam and elementary school camp. Before I go into camp though, I want to talk a bit more about the beach stay break. We got to go to an Ocean Festival, so that was fun. I still wasn't feeling 100% but I was still glad that I got to experience it. Then, we went to the Yeosu Expo. I’m afraid I didn’t use my time there as wisely as I could have. The lines were very long, so my friend and I went to see the United States’ exhibit. They moved people through their line quickly, so we didn't have to wait long and we were curious to see what they would do. We wanted to see a few other countries, but the lines were just so long! Because of that, the USA exhibit was the only one I saw. I spent the rest of the day with some friends sitting next to the Dunkin Donuts, relaxing. It was nice to spend time together, even if we weren't getting “the full experience.” One of the other students told me that the Expo buildings were constructed solely for the Expo and would be taken down again once the Expo concluded. I could hardly believe it! The Expo was huge and there were so many interesting, technical things about it—I couldn't imagine the kind of planning that must have been involved. . | Yeongam is our new camp. The facilities are very nice here. I have to say, while there are aspects of Wando that I do not miss (such as the rampant disease), I do miss the closeness we had there. I liked that it was one isolated building that we were all stuck in together- it felt more like camp. And I also liked that my classroom was right down the hall from my bedroom. Here we have to walk uphill for 10 minutes or so to get from one room to the other. Another important difference- the elementary students are INSANE. I love them to death, but they are driving me crazy. They have so much energy all of the time and they will do anything for a sticker. That is actually one thing I like. American kids can be rowdy or out of control much of the time and they are much more difficult to reign in. Korean students, at least in the elementary camps, don't need the same amount of incentive as American kids- one sticker and they will follow you around fanning you for the day, or will instantly fall into line. | 16

17: I'm not going to lie. I miss my middle-schoolers. I didn't realize I would miss them as much as I do. I think their personalities were more developed, so I connected with them better? I'm not sure what it was, but I adored those middle-school children. I didn't feel that sad when they first left (probably because I felt half dead), but now looking back it really hits me how much I miss them. I think these new students will grow on me- that is my hope in any case. I also miss my first co-teacher. My dynamic with her was very smooth and very easy- as educators we just sort of clicked. My new teacher and I, while we get along perfectly, don't seem to have the same sort of chemistry in the classroom. I never realized before just how important that chemistry was- or even that such a thing existed! This makes me nervous for when I come to Korea to teach full-time. When I get assigned a co-teacher it will be for a year at a time and I don't believe I will have the option of asking for a new one if we don't mesh well. It's definitely something I am going to have to work out in the future, and I'm glad this program made me aware of it. I think I'm plateauing in my "culture shock" journey. Because I was familiar with the culture before I came, I feel like I didn't really experience that much of a "shock," but I stayed in the excitement phase for quite a long time. My illness took a lot out of me. For what feels like the longest time, I've been trying to find the energy just to do all of the necessary things that I need to- let alone feeling excited. I've reached that point where I am just exhausted. I haven't had much of an appetite and most of the food just seems really unappealing. I wish I had brought more American snacks. My co-teacher asked how I planned to live there when I didn't like the food, to which I responded, "I hope when I move I will have access to a grocery store and a kitchen. I love to cook, and here we aren't really allowed off campus, so our only access to food is through the convenience store or the cafeteria. Luckily, Yeongam has an excellent convenience store- it's so much nicer than Wando's and it's almost always open. That has been such a blessing to me since most of my recent food has come from there. Anyway, I feel badly because I feel like I'm not giving my elementary school kids my all and that I'm letting down both them and my co-teacher. I really want to do a good job, but I feel like I'm disappointing both them and myself. I'm just so tired all of the time, and I wonder if my digestion will ever feel normal again. I'm at the point where I just want to go home. I keep wishing and praying that my energy and exuberance from the first couple of weeks will come back- maybe while we visit Seoul? I'm going to keep trying my best and hoping that things will get better. It's not fair to the kids to do any less. And honestly? They deserve it. While they might be driving me crazy, they really are smart, cheeky kids and they deserve the best I can give them. | 17

18: 8/20/12 Buying Seoul My last day in Korea has finally arrived. I'm not sure how I feel about that. I am really going to miss it here. I know my last entry makes it seem like that wouldn't be the case, but it's true. I have been feeling so much better recently- there really is no comparison. I loved my time in Seoul. Last time I was in Seoul, I enjoyed myself just as much. To be honest, if I could choose my place of work when I graduate, it would have to be Seoul- it truly is one of my favorite cities on the planet. The Korean Government has been treating us very well. They took us on a tour of a green tea farm- that was so incredible! I climbed all the way to the top of the mountain and then had to climb back down again on a path that was pretty much a stream- it was an interesting experience, to say the least. We also got to tour a traditional village. I can't even express how happy I was to go there. I have seen so many villages like that in historic dramas, so to see it in person was incredible. Compounding on that, because I had seen the dramas, I was able to walk through the village and envision the people that might have lived there, how they might have dressed, how they might have interacted. I feel like this made the experience much richer, and I feel like other students who had not had the same experience might not have gotten the full measure of the visit. I think it should be a pre-departure requirement before heading to South Korea that each student be required to watch at least two Korean dramas- one historical (period) and one modern, and then should have to write a paper, explaining things they questioned/found interesting, etc. Having gone to Korea once before watching dramas and once after, I can say with some authority that watching the dramas helped me appreciate and enjoy my trip much more. We were also able to sleep together in a traditional house and I thought that was absolutely incredible! I had grown used to sleeping on the floor, so I didn't mind that, and it was nice to bond with the other girls through stories and hair braiding. Since we were almost all together in one house, I liked the camaraderie of it. The scenery was also breathtaking and the house beautiful in its own right. Trying to get our suitcases up the rocky hill to the house was another story, but as with everything else on this trip, we made it work. Once we arrived in Seoul itself, I was a little bit surprised to see the location of our hotel. It was in a somewhat "sketchy" neighborhood. There was a host club right next door, and the subway was a good 10-15 minute walk up the road. But there were pizza shops and burger places, Dunkin Donuts, and cafe's- plenty of places for college students to satisfy their hunger and their hunger for wifi. There was also a Daiso right up the street which is like a Korean version of a Family Dollar- I bought so many cute, cheap things there! My friend Maria and I attacked Seoul with a vengeance. We were hell-bent on finding the best bargains and we succeeded! We bought so many things- I don't have a clue how I am going to get them all home. I think I shall have to leave some things to my co-teacher. I think I spent the majority of my money on Etude house products. Etude house is a make-up house that sells a variety of beauty products. Personal appearance and attractiveness are HUGE in Korea, much bigger than in the U.S. Imagine if Loreal, Maybelline, Cover Girl, and Revlon all had their own stores, and that all of those stores could be found on nearly every city block- that's kind of how ti is in Korea. Anyway, Etude House has a lot of my favorite products, most especially their BB cream. That is something else Korea is famous for- BB cream. It's like a moisturizing foundation made to pamper your skin while simultaneously making you look flawless. It is magical. They are only just now starting to sell it in the U.S. and I didn't know if I would like our kind, so I bought an awful lot of Etude house's.. Maria and I also bought Korean facial masks. They are these cloth masks that come with product on them that you put on yoru face for 20 minutes. Maria and I liked to put them on during our evening "unwinding time." I first learned of them the last time I came to Korea, and now use them all of the time at home. I'm always searching them out in the Asian markets near my home,but they can be expensive back home, so I bought a lot of those too. I also got to go dancing- I was so thrilled! When I went to Korea last time, my friend who showed me around was an RA/CA, so she didn't want us going to any of the clubs. This time I was over twenty-one, so a group of us got to go to Hongdae to check out the clubs. Hongdae is a district in Seoul right next to a college, so it has a very active social scene and some very nice shops. It was interesting to me ot go to a Korean club, because for some reason, I was expecting it to be different than an American club, but it wasn't. They played house music, a lot of it in English, everyone danced the same- it was almost completely normal. The only major difference I noticed was the smoke. People can smoke inside certain buildings in Korea, a club being one of them. | 18

19: That is one thing I prefer about the U.S- a lot less cigarette smoke in public. It stuck me as odd that a culture can be so health conscious and put such an emphasis on health and fitness while simultaneously being a drinking and smoking culture. There is a lot of smoking and a lot of drinking- so I think that is something I will just have to get used to. Anyway, I had a lot of fun in Seoul. Maria and I mastered the subway system no problem and we rode around everywhere feeling like complete grown-ups. I will be sad to go home. It will be weird hearing people speaking English, overhearing conversations that are really none of my concern, understanding what everyone is saying. I think I will also be bored reading the signs everywhere- in Korea, if you see English, the odds are there will be something strange grammatically or with the content. In the U.S. everything will be spelled correctly and that gets boring. While I'm sad to be leaving, I'm happy to be going home to familiar food and faces- I know my mom will be happy to have me back. I'll be coming back in a year; I just have to wait until then! | 19

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21: Reflection Paper | 21

22: I will be honest- I have been putting off writing this final reflection. In my mind, once this paper has been submitted, it will mean that my experience is truly over and I don’t feel that I am ready to accept that. I can’t properly put into words how this program affected me. I went into it with all of the excitement of someone who has achieved something. “Yes! I passed my interview- I was accepted, and now I’m going back to Korea!” Those were my thoughts. I was apprehensive to command my own classroom for the first time, but excited simultaneously. I expected the program to show me my strengths and weaknesses as an educator and to help me decide if I was on the right path. Not only did it affirm me in my direction, but it irrevocably thrust me forward, past all desire of ever turning back. I am now confident in my future and where I am headed. I am not saying that this experience was perfect, or without difficulty, far from it. While the good infinitely outweighed the bad, there were some aspects I could have lived without (the food poisoning being one). One thing that both disturbed and surprised me was the organizational level of the programs. I suppose because I am used to thinking of Asian students as excelling, and Asians expecting so much of themselves as a whole, that I expected their organization to follow the same line of thought. I hadn’t stopped to give it much thought, but in the back of my mind, I suppose I had a preconceived notion that the day would be structured by hour, that everything would be very orderly and would follow very specific patterns. I think that is what I have grown used to in the states. Even after being warned that the program is very “fly by the seat of your pants,” nothing compares to experiencing it first-hand. When not in the camps, I felt like I never knew what was going to occur from one hour to the next, and I was never entirely certain of what the next day would hold in store for me. While this was somewhat disconcerting, it also gave me a sense of freedom and adventure. As Pocahontas would say, “What I dream the day might send, just around the riverbend” When we had to board our tour busses, I was never entirely sure where my bus was heading, but that served to make me want to ride it all the more! My first campsite was Wando, and since Wando had the most character it is the one I will be speaking about in this paper. I fear if I tried to cover both campsites my paper would far exceed its size limitations. Wando was our middle school camp and I absolutely adored my middle schoolers, so I am biased towards this camp. The camp was a building located in rural Wando. It was very isolated from the rest of the town, but it had an amazing view! I would go up to the highest roof at regular intervals throughout the day just so I could enjoy the view in different settings. It was just as lovely at noon as it was at sunset. We split into our rooms, 3-4 girls a room, and we were lucky in that each of our rooms had a restroom attached—not all of the camps were so lucky! Unfortunately, the toilets clogged on occasion, but we dealt with that problem as it arose. The campsite had a small sort of convenience store near the cafeteria, but it was only open for an hour or so after dinner, and sometimes after lunch. It also wasn’t open the first few days we were there, or after the children started getting sick, so we only had access to it for maybe half of the time. That was one thing I had wished I had when I was sick—the ability to go out and buy some juice and crackers, or something similar. The food at Wando did not vary much and for sick people they made a watery rice, which is not something that settles most Western stomachs! But we made do, and we all survived. What was interesting to me was that they closed the store because they believed that was what was making the children sick. They felt that since the children were eating cold ice cream after eating hot food, they were getting ill. Also, the air conditioning was blamed. Many of the children complained of not being able to sleep because it was so hot in their rooms at the beginning of camp, so many of them were exhausted. Still, the air conditioning was shut off after kids started getting sick, because they felt that was also the cause. The fact that the students were kept up late doing squats as a group punishment because of one or two student’s misbehaviors, or the fact that they were woken up early for exercises and were exhausted was not taken into account. Nor was the fact that there was not a single bar of soap in our entire facility. These differences completely took me by surprise. Further, once the doctors came in and took over our camp, they interviewed the teachers, but performed no tests. They collected stool samples from all of the students and had them fill out extensive forms. When I was declared as “burning up,” in the teacher’s room, I was given an ice pack, but my temperature was not checked as the student’s temperatures were. While being interviewed, when I asked the doctor what he thought the problem was, he responded that “It seems the teachers are suffering from a cold passed to one another—because your bodies are not used to the food or climate. The students we believe have food poisoning.” This is regardless of the fact that we had all been eating the same food and drinking the same drinks for the past week. These beliefs startled me to say the least. | 22

23: Before we all got sick and miserable though, the camp was wonderful. I loved that everything was in one building—it made me feel closer to everyone! It definitely had a “camp-like” feel to it. That being said, for next year I do think the supplies could be a bit better. Soap aside, the boys there love to play soccer. The first night they kicked around an empty bottle, and then the nights after that they found a semi-deflated ball. I wished they had had a true soccer ball to kick around, since they enjoyed it so much. (And they were quite good! I loved to watch them play!) Still, it was a rural location, so it was a given that not everything would be perfect. While we weren’t expecting fungus in the water supply, everything else was easily managed. You just had to make it work with what you had. When I first walked into my classroom, I almost cried. It was so small! There were all of these tables and chairs jammed in there, and you couldn’t move around hardly at all. So my co-teacher Julie and I rolled up our sleeves and set to work. We took the tables out of the room except for two I left pressed against the wall. (Those we cleaned thoroughly!) Then we moved two of the desks into the bathroom, and set two up in front. The chairs we moved around every day depending on the activity. When we were finished, while it was still a little tight, it was a cozy kind of tight, and I thought our room looked marvelous. The students used their chairs for desks during journal time, and overall, we made it work. That was basically the motto of the camps, as Tim Gunn would say, “Make it work!” I hope what I contributed most to my campsite was an impact on my students. I tried to stay positive and stay passionate my entire time there. When we didn’t have any convenience store supplies for the students to buy, Julie and I made our own. We were up until after 1:00 in the morning the eve of the first day of classes trying to finish them, but they were lovely! I actually stayed up late most nights trying to make sure my classroom was set up the way I wanted it to be for the next day, or lesson-planning, etc. I really wanted to make a positive impact on the students, so I worked hard to be able to do that. I’m hoping I succeeded, but I think that’s one of the hardest things about teaching. For the most part, you’ll never know. At the end of each year, each class, you have to say good-bye and pray that you’ve prepared them sufficiently for their next steps. I discovered that through these camps. Confronting that separation was one of the hardest things I think I’ve ever had to face. One of the things I struggled with in working with my peers is that I personally felt that many of them were not on the same level of motivation that I was, and that caused some frustration. I will acknowledge myself to be someone who perhaps takes things too seriously, but I think I come from a different perspective than many of my fellow classmates. For example, as a former Penn Stater, I find school pride to be a very important matter. Now mind you, Penn State is going through a very rough patch right now, but school spirit has always been its number one export. That being said, when I went anywhere as a Penn State representative, it was always stressed that I had to properly represent my school- in the alma mater it even states, “Let no act of ours bring shame.” I carry that with me to this day. Even now, as an Arizona State student, I want to still maintain that attitude and properly conduct myself when serving as an ambassador for my school. I do not feel that many of my classmates have that same desire, as school pride (at least in my experience) has not had the same level of importance in ASU daily life. To support this, I reflect on the day we participated in the mud olympics. We arrived at a small local festival by the beachfront and it was instantly apparent that this festival was a large event to the local populace. It seemed that everyone who lived nearby had turned up for the event and there were many booths, many events, and many photographers to capture the experience. It seemed each time we so much as turned our heads there was a cluster of photographers there to capture the movement. Unfortunately, there was also a large amount of free alcohol to be had. | 23

24: This is what raised a problem for me. I do not have a problem with alcohol in general, or with the consumption of it, and had my classmates tastefully indulged themselves, I would not have so much as raised an eyebrow. Most of us were legal, by Korean standards in any case, and therefore were free to drink as pleased us. It wasn’t even the drinking that bothered me—although I felt some restraint certainly could have been applied in that area. After all, we had been most graciously, and to great expense, been brought there to work (and at our best capabilities), not to drink. What bothered me is the sight of my classmates posing for the foreign press with bottles of alcohol in each hand, or pretending to chug entire bottles. It seems to me that Americans are often portrayed negatively when abroad, most especially in their tendency towards excess or lack of restraint, and I felt our group did nothing to negate those preconceptions. I am not certain how those pictures were used, but I more than able to imagine how they could have been used, and that concerns me. The fact that my classmates didn’t stop to imagine that also concerns me. In this I struggled to get along with my classmates. While I didn’t often stop them in their behaviors (they are after all, adults, and it was not my place to do so), I also didn’t engage in behavior that I thought could negatively impact myself or my school. Always forefront in my mind was the idea that I had been brought there to work, that the program spent quite a large sum of money for me to be there, and that I owed them my best. Due to this mindset, I believe quite a few of my fellows saw me as a less than fun individual, and this caused tension. This is not to say that all of my classmates were crazy party people. There were quite a few who acted very responsibly and conducted themselves with decorum. And, even those that didn’t showed genuine care for the children. I think that was what united us across the board. No matter how we felt about each other, our love for the children was tantamount. No one left that experience saying “I hated my kids, I’m so glad to be out of here and won’t have to see them again.” Everyone experienced a sense of loss when their kids left for home-many still continue to feel it. This is true of both the ASU students and other universities. I will admit, I enjoyed meeting the students from the other universities and I loved that we were able to see each other both through the orientation and through the after camp activities. I made a lot of new friends and I am so grateful to have met them. I almost wish we hadn’t been as separated as we were. There were a few students in our camp who were not ASU, but after the second or third day, no one noticed. Since our camp was primarily ASU, the three non-affiliated students were quickly accepted into the fold. After the first couple of days, it felt that we were all ASU- that I would see Ruth in the MU after arriving at home, or might run into Sam while studying in Hayden. It was almost jarring to realize that this wouldn’t be the case. I don’t think the school itself is the important factor, but rather the idea that after a certain point, we weren’t different, but rather one indistinguishable, unified whole. The kids weren’t difficult to love. They made me laugh almost every single day I taught or worked with them. Many of them walked around calling me “Emma Watson.” And they were so friendly! I constantly heard calls of “Jessica Teacher, hello!” “Jessica Teacher, I love you!” I remember one day, there was a student named Georgia in my class. (He wanted to be named after a Korean brand of coffee!) We were playing the game “Kaboom!” I had just asked a question and the student whose turn it was had just responded correctly. They were all waiting to hear what the result would be. For a correct question, the response could either be points for their team, a missile which could remove all points from another team, or a bomb that would remove all of their team’s points. The team that had just answered correctly was in the lead, so everyone else was hoping that they would receive a bomb. One of the students had even started chanting “boom, boom, boom.” I was facing the board, preparing to write what the outcome would be, and I was hearing this chanting, when all of a sudden I hear Georgia chip in out of nowhere. So as I’m listening, I hear “boom, boom, boom” and then, “gotta get that!” I almost died. There is a Black Eyed Peas song called “Boom Boom Pow” and that’s how it begins. I was not expecting to hear that from a Korean student! I promptly gave Georgia a sticker and a high five. | 24

25: Overall, this experience was wonderful, amazing, frustrating, and generally unforgettable. I’m so glad I got to participate and I really hope I can go again next year. I thought the pre-departure sessions were really good, and I enjoyed getting feedback from prior participants. And I feel the work load associated with this internship was just the right amount. There was a lot of work involved in the camps themselves, so the size of this paper is perfect. I have to say our accommodations for the most part were more than adequate (I loved the Women’s Plaza!), so I felt thoroughly satisfied on that account. I was actually surprised at how much money they seemed to be spending on us, and that only served to make me feel more grateful to the program! That being said, one place I do think that could use some improvement is in the area of field trips. I don’t think the timing worked out well on most of our stops—in that we either had too much time at one place, or not enough time at another. Also, the middle schoolers did not seem to overly enjoy their field trip. We went to a political office in Mokpo, where we rode the elevator to the top, looked around for about 5 minutes, then went back down again. Then we went to a library where the students watched a short video (the teachers all bought coffee), and then we were promptly hustled to the arboretum, where my kids were too hot to walk around. They sat in the shade of one of the buildings and played games instead. I don’t think it was really geared towards the student interests. I also could have wished for a schedule of the trip that was given out at the beginning of the program, but I lived without it. Some of the other groups had schedules, but many of them said different things, so it caused a lot of confusion. It would have been nice to have a schedule, but I managed just fine without it, so it wasn’t a really big deal. Overall, I think the program did an excellent job of exposing us to Korean culture and what it means to be an educator. | 25

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  • By: Jessica C.
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  • Title: Jeollanamdo Portfolio
  • My time in Jeollanamdo over the summer of 2012
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  • Published: about 4 years ago

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