If anyone is curious what video English classes with native speakers from overseas (in this case, the US) look like, Newsis posted photos of Monday's demonstration class at Maetan Middle School in Suwon yesterday. The subject of the class, Newsis tells us, was 'doenjang jjigae.'
"With your neighbor make a list of your favorite kinds of Kimchi. Can you describe each one?"
"What is one way that makes Doenjang Jjigae healthier? It acts as an anti-cancer agent."
One wonders how these overseas teachers are recruited and whether they even know anything about Korean food. Foreign teachers who are actually present in schools in Korea would at least be familiar with Korean food (via the school lunches, at the very least). That Korean school textbooks have lots of Korea-related content is, of course, unsurprising, but I get the feeling some of the textbooks are aimed at 'educating' the foreign teachers who might be using them. In particular the 천재교육 grade 6 English textbook has a unit titled, I kid you not, 'How do you say it in Korean?' which seems to be aimed at educating the foreign teachers about bulgogi, hanbok, yunnori, ssireum, and gayageum. Or perhaps that's just a side perk, and the main idea is to teach students how to act as missionaries in order to effectively spread and teach Korean culture to foreigners.
At any rate, I'm just thinking out loud about how these video teachers experience their classes, and in particular what it's like teaching classes that focus on a culture they may know little to nothing about (unlike foreign teachers who are in-country, who, whether they want to or not, get a crash course in the culture). Are there any readers out there who have taught these classes? I get the feeling they're rather scripted, with little margin for improvisation or injecting their own personalities into the lessons.
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