Interview with Kayla at English World Academy in Yeosu
What is your name?
What is/was the name of your school?
English World Academy (E-world Academy)
What city & province is the school located in?
Yeosu, Jellonam Province
Are you still teaching there? Please enter Yes or No!
What is/ was your motivation for going to South Korea?
I recently graduated with a BA in intercultural studies and I had intended to move overseas following my education. This is my third time in Asia and I had planned to come back to teach English. A number of things factored into my decision to come specially to South Korea, all of which I am very grateful. I could not imagine being anywhere else!
When did you realize, holy crap, what am I doing?
My first few weeks here…I had quite the range of emotions that came from realizing the absence of English (what appeared to be compared to Canada anyways) to first walking into my first English class. I was frustrated, baffled, and excited about this new adventure, the whole time thinking “what did I just do?” and “holy crap what am I doing?”
What is the one sentence or word you have to know in Korean? Please spell in English!
Hwajangshille audee aeyo? – where is the bathroom
What should you definitely bring to Korea?
Pictures, laptop, bed sheets, warm clothes (seriously!), basic necessities until you get settled in (you can find it all here! Toothbrush, etc), things like razors and tampons are expensive or hard to find here (so bring some unless you plan to have ppl send you some via mail).
What is the most disgusting/favorite thing you have eaten in Korea?
The most disgusting thing I have eaten so far has been “sak nak ji” – translated “raw baby octopus” It was still moving when it was cut up…it was more of a deal I made with someone to try before actually leaving Korea but ended up trying it my second week here! (If you plan something crazy like this don’t share with your co-teachers otherwise they will set the date and time!! Definitely something you should try before leaving Korea though!)
What is/was your favorite place in your city and why?
The first couple of weeks I was living in Yeosu, one of our co-teachers took us somewhere on Dolsan Island I believe. It was a little tea shop at the edge of a mountain that overlooks the ocean…it has so far been my favorite place here!
How many years have/did you teach at this school? If less 1year or less why did you leave?
I have only lived here for 3 months but I do intend on staying in Yeosu at this school for 2 years. A few teachers have actually have come back to renew their contracts for a second year.
Can you tell us about your school? Moral quality, working hours, benefits etc and would you recommend this school, why or why not?
I would definitely recommend this school to anyone who has an apt for working with children. I would not recommend this job to just anyone, you really need to be patient and know how to be silly and have fun. Children have been by far the most difficult students I have ever taught English to but they also have been such a joy to have in my life! My boss, the headmaster of the school is the hardest working individual I have ever seen! You are only required to teach from either 2 or 3 till 8pm Monday to Friday.
There is little prep that goes into each of the lessons as you teach out of a book, so I only need to come in an hour before teaching (every second day I teach 5 or 6 classes hence teaching at 2 or 3pm) The staff love their job, love the students, and my boss continues to work at getting to know us foreign teachers (even taking time out to take us on an excursion somewhere or out for coffee one on one).
It’s a family owned business and I’m so grateful for be working with them and for them! They really start to become like your own family and have been so kind to come quickly to help me outside of school (even doing hospital runs with you because you accidently hurt yourself (minor accident)! – my story) Also, we get lunch and supper provided for daily at the school and pizza on test days!!
Any advice for newcomers or anything else you would like to add?
Decide first if you like working with children or not cause Korean children are the same as any other child! If not look for a job where you will be teaching adults…there are jobs out there! Also, request to speak with a current foreign English teacher at the school you are interested in before giving your “yes” or “no” to a position. Finally DO YOUR RESEARCH!!
Don’t just rely on just one source of information you may find but actually take time to talk to people, read over your contract thoroughly and have them explain things that may not be clear beforehand…you don’t want to come here and feel mislead!
When you come to Korea with an open mind and a willingness to learn and experience new things you will have a great time. Kayla is one of those people who enjoys new experiences and embraces the adventure that comes with it. She is a great example of what schools are looking for when hiring a Teacher. I wish her the best time in Korea. Want to know more about Kayla? Follow her blog whatiskimchi.blogspot.com
Any questions for Kayla or something I didn’t ask you would like to know?