WHOA! Thought we forgot about our TL;DR segment, didn’t ya? DIDIN CHA? Admit it. Yes, we didn’t do one for a couple of weeks, but – as you might know – we just moved into our new apartment in Seoul and have spent most of our time handling all of that stuff. As you can hear from the echo in our audio, our apartment is still quite empty…BUT THAT WON’T STOP US FROM MAKING MOVIES! Forward ho!

This week we’re answering a TL;DR question from the comments in our last TL;DR on How We Lost Weight in Korea:

i’m not sure if this was asked before but in south korean schools what kind of events do they hold for the students?? like here in usa (when i was in HS) we have homecoming, prom, spirit week (where we dress up differently on different days like nerd day dress up like a nerd), prep rallies and mm can’t think of the other ones but stuff like that?????????? if not those things then do they do things that are similar??

Great question! We really wanted to talk about something Korea-ish lately. We’ve been doing a lot of talking about ourselves and Kpop for our TL;Drs, so we liked being able to talk about a topic that’s neither. Woohoo! Though, this is about teaching, and we haven’t been teaching for a while now. Martina stopped teaching June 2011, Simon June 2010, so we’re a bit out of the loop now. Maybe things have changed? We’re not sure. If there are any festivals we missed, please let us know in the comments below!

The main difference we noticed with Korean School Festivals and North American School Festivals is the importance of homeroom. Maybe school’s different in the US, but – from what I remember in high school – your home room class was just, well, your first class at the beginning of the day. That teacher took your attendance and gave you the news that the school wanted to tell you (“Don’t forget that Thursday we’ll be having vaccines in the gym. Get your parents to sign the consent form”). In Korea, though, homerooms are so much more than just attendance check-ins, and the festivals/gatherings really show that. Korean students are in their homeroom for a vast majority of the day with the same students, and they see their homeroom teacher a lot. It almost becomes something like their second family, you know? We’ve heard our Korean co-teachers describe themselves almost as parents to their students. So, these festivals aren’t necessarily for school spirit, but for homeroom spirit, we think.

Otherwise, we’ve done a bunch of videos on these festivals and activities before. We made a playlist of them all in the video above, but if you’d like to read the blog posts that accompany them, here’s a short list:

  • Korean School Festivals: Here’s a video of the day at Martina’s school where they transform every room into something different and fun.
  • Korean School Sports Day: This is a video of Martina saying goodbye to her school, but it has footage of Sports day there as well!
  • Martina and Nichkhun’s message to her school: We were on Running Man a long time ago, back when Martina was still teaching. We got Nichkhun, after the filming was over, to say a few short words of encouragement to Martina’s students, which she showed them at their year-end festival.
  • Korean School Excursion: OH THIS IS SO OLD! Check out Martina going with her students to Jeju. That’s back when we didn’t care about using copyrighted music! Oh, the memories!
  • Korean School Dance Festival: Here’s Martina dancing with her students for one of their school festivals. Ha! Oh, we’re SO MUCH BETTER at dancing now. Well, maybe not that much :D

Lastly, sorry this is a bit late. Our YouTube upload speeds are A LOT SLOWER here in our new apartment. Not sure why, but they’re taking a couple hours, while in Bucheon it would take, like, 20 minutes :( We had to go to sleep and publish it in the morning. Sorry!

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