Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Going, going...

A few letters from students, including a gorgeous poster from my third-years!
Should I have made a bigger deal out of my leaving? I've been downplaying my imminent departure so much that I wonder if my students have really digested the reality of it all. I know I haven't, not really. This has been the week of "last classes", and they have mostly looked like this: I pass out class awards, tell the students via riddle or just straight up that I'm going back to the States for grad school, and then show Video Game High School or play Mafia. Then the bell rings, the students leave, and I sit at my desk and wonder if I should be, like, emotional or anything. I think one thing I am going to regret is that I haven't set aside any time to take class photos with my students.

Tomorrow, the second-years are going on a field trip to Jirisan, and I will join them, so there's a good opportunity to "catch up," so to speak. All the photos I take will end up on Facebook, and now that my contract is officially over, I think I can start adding my students as friends. In this way, at least, goodbye isn't really goodbye, since we can easily keep in touch online. Still, what I'll miss the most is physically being with my students, and no social network can replace that.

I'm having my first-year students write letters to the new Fulbright teacher who will replace me this fall. The letters are very cute, and so far they give good insight into the students' personalities. Some students surprised me by writing very thoughtful letters or by writing more than I expected of them. Other students surprised me by writing me a letter instead of focusing on the assignment I gave them. Well, I'm not going to take issue with that. :) I've gotten a few other letters from students, which I will cherish. I'm really touched when students take the time to show me that I've made some sort of impact on their lives, as brief as my time here has been. So yes, even the sheet of paper that says nothing but, "I love you, Teacher! Forever," and a bunch of hearts is going in my keepsakes box.

All of my third-years wrote something in a large card they gave me today. Since it was our last class, and since I like them enough to hand them twenty bucks and permission to go to the corner convenience store, I treated them to ice cream! And we blogged, of course. Ah, these are the students I taught for four semesters. I'll miss them a lot.

Oh! Unrelated: our school cohir had a mini-concert today. One of the songs they performed was called "Flying Free"; it was very beautiful. The other was "Hava Nagila", and I thought it was strange to hear Hebrew being sung from my Korean students' mouths... but my Asian church choir has sung in plenty of different languages before, so I guess I shouldn't make a big deal out of it! I really enjoyed their performance! Check out the videos below.

So... really. I'm looking at nothing but a day trip with students tomorrow, and then Friday, which is just a half-day. The last day. But it still hasn't registered yet.

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