The Joys of Teaching

For our forthcoming trip to Korea and Japan, I’ve gotten a lot us useful advice from my Korean students in regards to our two-day stay in Seoul.

1) Do not take the subway. So I have asked some of my former students to have our reunion at the hotel we are staying. Seoul has many eating and drinking places everywhere, so we plan on doing everything from there in walking distance.

2) Take sunglasses. As of now, the Yellow Dust (HwangSa) from China is sweeping over the peninsula, so we need to protect our eyes and we might have to buy some surgical masks as well.

3) Beware of pickpockets. Sounds like any big city in Europe, where we also need to travel with caution.

4) Beware of counterfeit. In order to learn to recognize counterfeit, I was given a lesson by a fourth-grader. He brought all kinds of Korean bills with him, pointing out the watermarks, the silver stripe in some of them, raised textures on some, and more details almost too tiny to see with one’s eyes.

Last, but not least, my local bank had told me I could not buy Korean currency in Germany. This I will have to do with euro cash at the Incheon Airport bank.

That same fourth-grader was also concerned I might go hungry, when I arrive in Seoul without Korean money in my wallet. So he gave me this bill below, so I could buy myself two lunches in Seoul.

Korean Won currency

His concern for me was the nicest present I have ever been given by a student. I offered him euro in exchange, but he wouldn’t have it. All I had to do in return was my promise to him to have a good time.

German Flower Arrangement Certificate

독일 꽃꽃이 자격증 수업,(한국어 통역사와 함께하는)

In Grünberg (near the town of Giessen), there is a German Floristic school called Grünberger Bildungszentrum Floristik, which offers a course in German flower arrangement.

After successful completion of the two-week course, each participant is presented with a recognized certificate awarded by the Industrie und Handelskammer (IHK), the German Chamber of Commerce.

Dates for the course: 22 July 2012 – 04 August 2012

Place: Grünberg

Language: The class is held in German, with a Korean interpreter.

Award: Certificate in German Floristics, awarded by the German Chamber of Commerce

This course is being held in cooperation with Bang Sik Floristic School in Seoul, South Korea.

For more information about the course, please contact Mr. Paizdzior in Grünberg at:

werner.paizdzior@bildungszentrum-floristik.de

Your inquiry to Mr. Paizdzior can be made in German or English.

 

 

 

 

The New Culture of Emoticons

Roughly about the same time my husband forwarded me the article Emoticons Move to the Business World, featured in the New York Times, I asked a Korean high school student to teach me some emoticons, Korean style.

Since my husband and his colleagues (one of them had forwarded the article to him) are members of the English department, it is somewhat obvious they’d approve of real words to show emotion.

At the same time, maybe by coincidence, none of them are on facebook or twitter. My husband’s argument against social media is that he does not have time for it. He might, if he only wrote some emoticons along with his words. Darn, I almost used one now.

The article itself was very good to read. And yes, I do refrain from using emoticons in business e-mails. In business, using them is stepping too close to the subject, more like slapping your business partner on his back.

But when on social media, it becomes a necessary tool. At times, I might only have a minute to comment on somebody’s post and the emoticon saves me a lot of time from trying to explain I was only (trying to be) witty. See, these three words could have been substituted by one simple sign.

In real life, we can use our facial features to transcend the mood of the speaker. In social media, with so many non-native speakers around in the global network, we want to make doubly sure we are understood. And what better way than to accentuate it with a smiley face.

I had fun learning these Korean emoticons today and want to share them with you. Frankly, I can’t wait to add one of them to a post on facebook this evening.

^^ = happy

T.T = sad

-_- = annoyed

-_-;; = embarrassed

>< = totally excited

:S = confused

 

 

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