Sunday, March 27, 2011

Decisions

Hello,

The biggest decision you are going to have to make when moving over to Korea is whether or not you want to teach in a private school(Hagwon) or public school. Trust me the difference is HUGE.

Job - If you go to a public school you will work with the Board of Education as an ALT, or, alternative language teacher. Because laws in both Korea and Japan wont let foreigners become actual teachers. So to get around this, there will be a Korean teacher in the class room and you will simply be assisting him. Most of the time you will actually be the one teaching the class, having a Korean in the room is to dodge a loop hole in the system to allow foreigners to teach. You will also most likely teach at multiple schools in the area, not just one. However, at a Hagwon (pronounced hogwan) you will be the homeroom teacher. You will be the only one in the class room teaching, you will make the lesson plans and you will have a class all day everyday of the week as opposed to seeing a class once a week with multiple classes all week.

Duties - Another difference would be class size, at a Hagwon, you will most likely have 10-15 students. At a public school there can be up to 40 per class. As mentioned before with public schools you aren't directly responsible for your students, you don't really have to monitor their progress and since you will be teaching at multiple schools and many classes with 40 students this is a good thing. However at a private school you will be expected to do a whole lot more. You must make the lesson plans every hour of every day, field trips, grade cards and progress reports, you will work more hours, most likely teach 3 classes with 15 students each day so thats roughly 45 students you are in charge of and responsible for. In my experience I would say Hagwons are more involving and fun, public school teaching can get very dry and boring fast as you be teaching the same thing multiple times a day, and then in a few months when the next trimester starts, you will restart your material all over again.

Pay - Hagwons generally pay more but its only a fraction, not something worth taking into consideration. Plus the more time spent teaching the more money you earn each year. Both private and public school teachers can get well over $3,000 a month in a few years of work.

Employer - Your employer will be the BOE if teaching in public schools, this is a very very good thing, as the law and government watch over the BOE very closely. However if you choose to teach at a Hagwon, be warned, no one, and I mean no one, monitors there actions. Working for a Hagwon is a complete and total gamble, I've heard stories of people working at good Hagwons, but that was online and I doubt they are real. I have never met anyone who enjoyed their time at a Hagwon, they do very dirty business. But thats for another blog. Something to keep in mind is a private school is allowed to make their own contract and this contract is allowed to say just about anything. So Make sure to READ your contract carefully.

There is plenty more that could be said, but I rather this not turn into a huge blog post, so there may be more to come. I hope this helps in making your decision of where you might want to teach in South Korea.

Peace,
Wintermute

40 comments:

  1. thats one complicated life...

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  2. Reading contracts, sooo important...

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  3. I think id rather just teach in australia?! How does the internet go over there? i hear its amazing.

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  4. I've been told South Korea has the best internet by Artosis from the GSL. I believe it, but I don't play competitive gaming so it meets my needs.

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  5. Interesting to see how it's done there. And by Korea I suppose you mean the south?

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  6. Yuppers, I'd be too scared to go to the North.

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  7. I will go there one day but like a turist, not as worker. It's great looking country but i am European and love my country too :)

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  8. Ahaha, I have no interest at all moving to North Korea.
    I'm happy on South America :D

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  9. decisions are always hard to make, i hope you take the right one.

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  10. A friend of mine taught there, I don't know which route she went down though.

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  11. I'm sure you'll figure it out

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  12. that was kinda complicated,but take a time and i guess u'll find the right decision to take,good luck!

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  13. Wow, that sounds very intimidating. Why not teach in your home country?

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  14. Loving the blog so far, it's relative to me because im majoring in liberal studies and english. One of my biggest goals is to teach english in another country, you're lucky

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  15. I think it's ridiculous that Korea and Japan won't let foreigners teach (alone) in a classroom setting. A foreign teacher has a whole new perspective on teaching that the students will most likely benefit from.

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  16. Interesting how you never realize such things before it's too late.

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  17. that was very interesting!Moar pls

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  18. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  19. I am interested in your blog :) lol

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  20. It's a good idea to introduce foreign teachers. They bring good insight and allow a student to decide what direction they wanna go.

    Do I wanna benefit my country? Or someone elses?

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  21. nice of you wanting to become a teacher. I want to become a teacher as well, it's just the feeling of contributing in this world. Good luck with you journey in Korea and I'm sure you'll do fine. nice blog! following!

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  22. I never really looked at this as an option, but, 3k a month sounds nice.

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  23. Besides entrepenuerial pursuits, teaching is one of the few jobs i could tolerate.

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  24. I would like to go to Korea some time as well!

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  25. Those crazy Koreans and their crazy Korean laws...

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  26. Very interesting stuff. Its amazing how some of these foreign laws are.

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  27. You just made me hate all private schools... I think I could live doing the same thing everyday, as long as I got paid for it and had free time :)

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  28. I always wanted to live in a foreign country, I'd hate to try and work with the language barrier though :(

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  29. My friend just came back from Korea, and the only thing I learned was that it was very cold for her. After reading this, I realize I'm a tad inattentive towards her lol. Hey! Maybe I'll know something she doesn't >:)

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  30. would be nice to get some sweet asian tale!

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  31. Teaching in a different country must be so difficult! good blog, followed.

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  32. where are you moving from? and this sounds like a very fun job though, being able to travel to other countries and teach.

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  33. Wow. Teaching in another country. Good luck!

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  34. I know some people that have taught overseas and it seems to get mixed reviews. Some people love it, though!

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  35. My father has told me some nice things about Korea, I only hope to see it one day.

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  36. I hope you made the right decision! they are never easy

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  37. wow, thanks for the info. very useful!

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  38. Well, over here, we've let our public school system go straight to hell. I've been out of school 3 years, but back then each class had 40+ students for 90 minutes at a time. The best teacher in the world can't effectively teach that many students.

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  39. This is information I can't live without. thank you for sharing.

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