Korean Elementary Education

Dear Reader, 

We are a month before the end of our contract here at Daegu Gyeongbuk English Village. We are counting down our weekends, there are four. This post I wanted to express the love and affection I have come to have for the Korean education system we've experienced, and applaud the things they are doing so well. 

My list is as follows:

1. Facilities are newly built and taken care of. (Not sure if this is mostly due to S. Korea coming up in the 90's (probably so)) but their schools are so well taken care of.

2. Two monitors in every class, a TV, and multiple sliding whiteboards. Simple designs, but lovely.

3. Slippers at school. 

4. Brushing your teeth after every meal. Every school has a station where kids have their toothbrushes and do it every day for lunch. How incredible! 

5. The students clean their room before they leave every day.

6. Teachers are well paid. Or so we are told. This should be number 1, they are (Elementary school teachers) have some of the highest salaries comparatively. They also seem to be appreciated, this is from a very birds-eye view (of course.) 

7. Students are allowed to roam free at lunch. This seems different to me, and maybe I don't remember my own schooling well enough, but after they eat lunch they run, brush their teeth, and then they run outside and do whatever for 30-40 minutes. They can go to their classroom, they can play in the big open field, anything. It doesn't seem like there is much supervision, sure there is some, but most teachers go to their own break room and chill out. 

8. The layout of the school and classroom build, each classroom has two sliding doors for each room, and I just think this is fun and different. Again simple. It seems safer? In terms of caught fingers or slamming doors. 

9. Umbrella holders, are outside of each classroom, so helpful.

10. Student artwork is everywhere, and student portraits are everywhere.

11. Teachers from different grades interact with students from other grades. 

12. Student responsibility is incredibly high

13. Free access to all gymnasium equipment either outside or inside at all times. 

14. Schools are colorful, blue, yellow, red, green, and pink. They also have guard rails around all of the schools, for safety from cars, but are decorated in fun colors.

15. The playgrounds are just open fields of dirt. 

16. The students are ordered by number and the number remains the same.

17. When the students are at their school they like each other, and the kids like school, and they seemingly (some have told me explicitly) love their school and teachers. (Not everyone, not everywhere, but it seems that way every place I've gone.)

I love you Korean schools, stay happy. 

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