Hi, my name is Tijana Huysamen. I am from Cape Town, South Africa, have been traveling for 6 years, 4 of which was spent teaching in Korea, and have been to 42 different countries.
I am currently a Team Manager at Chungdahm Learning in Seoul where I work at the Songpa Branch and have been an employee of the company for 3 years now. I absolutely love working at CDL, as the hours and the pay are the best in Korea! The amount of opportunities and growth you will experience at the company, will allow you to feel like your time abroad is well spent.
living in Korea,
benefits of living in Korea,
Coming from University, more than four years ago now, I kept coming to the question of what is my purpose and why am I here. I felt lost and many of my college friends felt the same. There was always a big question mark after graduation and I kept asking myself "What should I do next?". With having limitless possibilities in life, it makes the choices feel impossible to achieve. Life is so big, and you only get to make these big decisions once. Before making this big life decision about what I wanted to commit myself to professionally, I wanted to explore the world and continue to find more about myself from a personal standpoint. Coming to South Korea, I know that I have achieved all of these aspirations and more, and I now have the confidence that nothing is impossible. In this blog I want to let you know how my time teaching in Korea has allowed me to not only gain professional skills, through teaching students and managing a classroom everyday, but also how my three years abroad has allowed me to learn many life skills which I will take with me no matter where I go after my time in Korea is up.
Having lived in Korea for three years, and also lacking the ability to cook, I have enjoyed various foods from numerous places located throughout Korea. That said, there are some places that I keep coming back to, whether it is because of taste, ease, or just a pleasant atmosphere. Today, I would like to introduce you to three restaurants you should check out during your time teaching in Korea. I picked these places in particular because they are chain restaurants, and you should be able to find a location no matter what city you are teaching in.
food in Korea,
restaurants in korea,
Seoul is a city that never sleeps and you can find something to do, anytime, anywhere. Having access to do things like food shopping or grabbing a bite to eat 24 hours a day is why Seoul has become one of my favorite cities in the world. Also, there is literally a district in Seoul for every type of person. There are districts for the budding fashionista's, the coffee-goers, the party animals and the travelers. Seoul also has the perfect blend of modern buildings and historic landmarks. The typical Seoul 'to do list' would recommend tourist hot spots like Myeongdong and ltaewon, however as a honorary Seoulite, I'd like to give alternatives to the top 5 day trip spots to check out in the city during your time teaching in Korea.
things to do in Korea,
things to do in seoul,
Hiking is one of the most popular recreational activities to do in Korea, and one of the best times to do this in during the Fall. During the Fall in Korea, not only is the temperature cool enough to make the hiking conditions comfortable, but the foliage also provides for many scenic and colorful views. It is for this reason why on a recent Saturday morning in Seoul, my girlfriend and I had signed up for a trip, through meetup, to visit MunGyeong SaeJae, which is located in the heart of Korea. Despite it lightly raining and the temperature being on the chilly side, we dressed warmly and got on a bus which would lead us to our hiking destination. This would be my first hiking trip I have taken during my time teaching in Korea, and I was especially excited for this adventure as the outdoors were currently filled with warm fall colors.
things to do on the weekends,
hiking in korea,
Weekend activities in Korea,
fall in korea
One of my biggest regrets when coming to Korea was that I didn’t begin to learn the language until my second year of teaching. If I had learned the language, I firmly believe that my first year here would have been even more amazing than what it was. While knowing Korean isn't required to teach for ChungDahm, you will find it is very beneficial to at least of have a general understanding of the language for things like using public transportation, reading a menu and understanding your students, especially if they are younger. Learning the Korean alphabet (Hangeul) only takes a few hours as King Sejong, the writer of Hangeul, made it so that that each letter represents movements made with the mouth and tongue. Below I have provided a list of common words that you should know when dealing with Korean students as well as Korean staff members during your time teaching in Korea.
English in Korea,
ESL teachers are motivated to teach in Korea, because of the large amount of savings they can accumulate. One such example of how you can save money while teaching in Korea is that the country is known for having cost-effecting housing utilities such as electricity, gas and water. All year round Korean utilities are low, ranging between 70,000W-130,000W. However, Korean Winters’ are the exception. If you are not careful you could be surprised with a 200,000W-400,000W bill!
Korean Winters can be super chilly, often hitting temperatures of -18C in the January months. Icicles hanging from the trees, slippery roads and the ruthless Siberian wind that will cut through your clothes. You will find yourself willingly turn up the heat in your apartment and repeatedly leave it on for the entire day. Over the years, I have figured out how to lower my Winter utility bill and often save more money during the Winter months than in the Summer months. Now that the Fall season is starting to transition to Winter, I wanted to use this blog I to offer three tips which will help lower your utility bills in the Winter months and not force you to break the bank.
life in Korea,
winter in Korea,
save money teaching English,
This year marked the 22nd annual Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) in Busan and as a movie lover, I was so excited to get to experience such a massive and unique event. The purpose and beauty of BIFF is to introduce new independent films and directors. Primarily, the movies are made in Asia, and hundreds are featured each year. If you are a movie lover like me, then I highly recommend you attend this festival during your time teaching in Korea.
movie theaters in Korea,
movies in Korea,
Festivals in Korea
One thing that differentiates a new teacher and from an experienced teacher is confidence. While most people think confidence means knowing, it actually means listening and learning. An experienced teacher goes with the flow of things, and doesn’t stress out about the small details. Showing confidence is really is all about managing your words and actions. If you want to be well-liked among your fellow teachers, and have a good status within your ChungDahm academy, then follow my tips below.
ChungDahm has given me a great opportunity to expand my teaching and managing skills especially in a foreign environment. I will admit, managing is not for everyone and I don’t believe that anyone can become a manager, however if you are interested in growing with ChungDahm Academy, then becoming a Team Leader may be the first step for you.
English teachers in Korea,