Monday, August 30, 2010

Second week at work

On my way to work this morning my wife told me "Have a nice day at work, Sucker!"

Why am at work, unlike my shiftless wife? She decided to use one of her 14 or so unused sick days to stay home with the offsprung on their final day in Kimchiland. They are flying back to the good old US of A-holes to get their edumcations at our fine pubic schools where I am also got my edumacation.

People think that Korean public schools are really great, and they are for teaching math and science, but not much else. In America, most students know that their are 50 states in the USA, they may only be able to name around three of them including their home state (New York, and California being the other two) less if they live in either New York or California. Some might be able to name Hawaii and Alaska because they are both located south of California in the middle of the ocean near the Mexican boarder, yet for some reason only one is tropical, where the other suffers from a sub arctic climate...odd.

And people on the news always complain that 99% of Americans cannot find Afghanistan or Iraq on a map of the middle east, but most of my students did not even know where Australia is, and it is a fucking continent (Oceania assholes, go ahead and google that bitch. And yeah I know its New Zealand, Indonesia and a bunch of islands too, but Australia is the main land mass, you nit picking sons of bitches.).

I know that math and science are very important, but I think learning about the world around you, peoples and cultures are also pretty damn important too.

When my students did not know where Canada and the US were, I figured that they must spend their entire geography and social studies classes focusing on Korea and its people and history, which most Koreans think is pretty fucking important.

So I asked my students how many provinces were in Korea, which I knew there were 9 (I swear I did at the time, but may or may not have just looked it up on Wikipedia) but my students had no idea. The students and my co-teacher also had no idea what the population of Korea was 49,773,145 (they thought it was way more), and when I showed them on the board their population, compared to the US 310,118,000 (also may or may not be recently googled) after slowly counting all the zeros out loud (I mean what is that? Why cant they look at 1,000 and say "one thousand"? or 1,000,000 and say "a million" what is with the complete lack of number recognition?), they gasped in amazement that there were so few Koreans compared to Americans. I did not want to even tell them how many Chinese or Indians there are, for one thing it would have taken the rest of the class for them to count all the zeros.

I thought that they might have a little more knowledge about where they live than American students, but not really. So I have no idea what these kids are learning for 10 hours a day at public school and 8 hours after school, but it sure aint about the world they live in.

Or how to count by tens.


  1. My students were pretty fucking ignorant about the world as well. The only country they could find on a map was Korea. At least in the US most kids might be able to point out Mexico or Canada.

  2. Hahaha.... best post I've read all week! Just start putting the comma ever 2-places and really start messing with them.


    "That's 2 billion, 56 million, 58 thousand, 97...WOW!"

  3. Rather than asking students questions like that I just tell them. I had a similar experience with the province thing. I made a quiz game where I asked how many provinces there were...they always forget Jeju. Then on another occasion I asked a group of elite students what the smallest province was. I guess I translated province wrong to Korean, but everybody said Dokdo was the smallest province. That is, everybody except for one kid who guessed Jeju. When I told them that Dokdo wasn't the smallest province they all thought I was telling them that Dokdo wasn't a part of Korea, a tense situation ensued.