Happy New Year from South Korea! Despite not being a night creature, the motifs have always appealed to me, and Korea delivers. The liveliness, the nonsense, the spectacular karaoke called norebang, the palm-readers, the game rooms or PC Bangs—the possibilities are limitless. But what can I say: even with all the excitement, I enjoy earlier evenings. However, to welcome and further solidify my coming year living and teaching in Korea, I decided I was going to honor New Year’s Eve as truly as possible.Read More
Teachers Share their Experiences While Living Abroad!
Annually Koreans celebrate their New Year, Seollal. The holiday falls on different days each year. This year the holiday is being held over January 27-29. The period is decided according to the Lunar Calender.
Seollal and Chuseok are two of the biggest holidays in Korea where millions of Koreans take time off to travel to their home cities to spend time with their families. The Western equivalent would be Thanksgiving and Christmas. Seollal is very traditional with various associated foods and activities. Our students usually get money from their parents, aunts and uncles and Koreans festively say to one another 새해 복 많이 받으세요 (sae hae bok manhi bah doo seh yo) – which means “Happy Seollal.” This blog will help explain the customs and traditions of Seollal, so you will have a better understanding of the holiday when you are teaching in Korea.Read More
You will find celebrating Christmas while teaching in Korea to be very unique. Although you will hear a lot of Christmas music, see trees and building lit up, and people dressed in Santa suits, it still doesn't always feel like the Christmas season you are used to back home. In this blog I will do my best to give you tips on how to celebrate the holidays at ChungDahm, with your fellow teachers and expats in Korea and even your family back home.Read More
One of my favorite holidays back in America was the 4th of July. Thanks to Facebook’s memory reminders, I realized how much I was able to travel during those long holiday weekends. Although I wasn’t able to travel far from Seoul, I was able to do some fun activities to celebrate this holiday.Read More
Korean New Year, also known as Seollal or Lunar New Year, occurred this past week! It was celebrated from Sunday, February 7th to Wednesday, February 10th, departing from the year of the ram and entering the year of the monkey. People associate the year of the monkey with joyfulness, playfulness and some consider it the year of the fool. Lunar New Year falls on day of the second moon after winter solstice. It is one of the most significant traditional Korean holidays. All citizens get time off work, or school to be with family, enjoy tteokguk (a traditional rice cake soup enjoyed especially at Lunar New Year) and honor past ancestors. More recently, Korean’s have used the holiday to travel to distant family, so it is often the most expensive time of the year to book any form of transportation.Read More
Like many expats teaching in Korea, I assumed Christmas was going to be one big let down. That is to say, extremely sad and depressing, as I believed nothing could compare to Christmas at home in Canada with my family. Although celebrating Christmas in Korea was not the same, it also provided the opportunity to celebrate the holiday with my fellow ChungDahm teachers in different ways than I I had before.Read More
There are certain times each year when I really miss home. Whether it’s a birthday, a national holiday or religious holiday, we all become a little homesick on these days. The good news is there are some great ways to celebrate these holidays, even while teaching English in South Korea. The five holidays I have found to be the most popular among expats living in Korea are Birthdays, St. Patrick's Day, July 4th, Christmas and Thanksgiving.Read More
This past weekend was significant on many levels as a English Teacher in Korea at ChungDahm. For one, it was the weekend before a new term at ChungDahm began and secondly and probably most importantly it was the Lunar New Year holiday. As a result of the holiday we had a four day weekend which meant a few friends and I decided to travel to Hong Kong to refresh before the new term began. Now squeezing the contents of a 4-day Chinese whirlwind adventure into a single blog seems like an injustice, so this week I will give you three must-see attractions to visit in Asia’s most dynamic and multi-cultural cities.Read More
Noraebang, or singing room as it is known is a really big part of Korean culture. Whether you are celebrating a birthday, young or old, or closing a business deal it does not matter. Even my students, who are 9 years old, will go to a Noraebang with their friends. A typical night out for most people living and teaching English in South Korea will involve sometime spent in a Noraebang. You order drinks and food and have a good time. Because Noraebangs are so popular in South Korea you can find one on every street, in fact many times there will be more than one! My favourite Noraebang place is called "OKAY NORAEBANG" and it is always busy, with every room filled on weekdays and weekends.