Life At En English Village

Life At En English Village

 Life At An English Village

So for the past two years, I have worked at an English Village in Seoul. This has been a pretty amazing journey. Like many people that come to Korea to teach English, I had only planned to stay one year, but it has quickly turned into two, and I have already found a new position for it to become three.

Anyways back to the reason I have started this post. Since I have yet to actually work at a hagwon or public school or university, I can only infer what it would be like to work at one. However, I have made many friends and met about a billion people who have worked at these places, and I have a pretty good idea of how it compares.

First, I would have to say that working in an English Village is a great way to start a position teaching ESL abroad. I have taught little kindy students, elementary, middle, high, university, and adults in my particular position. I have taught book-based ESL lessons (which is what the majority of hagwons and after-school positions do), various theme classes (including medieval times, ancient Egypt, space, and debate, just to name a few), and full immersion style classes (with a fake airplane or post office). I have even taught not just Korean students but Japanese, Chinese, and Russians as well. Experiencing many different kinds of classroom settings and students has been challenging but one I have embraced.

The English village is not without its faults, though. Just like many other positions in Korea, they provide housing. The furnished accommodation isn’t exactly the best; it’s right on campus, so you are always seeing kids, and you live right next door to all the other foreign teachers. The housing size is also tiny one-room studio apartments (It's a dorm room). However, I don’t have to pay for any utilities while I live and work here, which is nice. As long as the Village has students, they also provide for all three meals in the day (don’t get too excited it is cafeteria food), which might be subpar but if you are trying to save money is a great bonus.

The classrooms aren’t exactly well maintained, but you are generally free to teach the lessons however you want. This is very nice because every teacher has their teaching style, which allows them more freedom to lead the class and students instead of the lesson plan.

We currently have two shifts the day shift (9-6 lunch 12-1:20) and the evening shift (1:20 – 8:30 dinner 6-7:20 but sometimes come in at 12:10). Personally, I prefer the day shift because it allows me to have my evenings free and meet friends for dinner or a different activity. The shift you are on is not set in stone, and you can sign up for whatever shift you prefer every month. However, you might not get what you want if not enough people sign up or too many. One big negative is that you don’t know what days you have off until the week before, and it's the same with what classes you will teach. I get two days off a week, but they are not always on the weekend. It can be any two days (Thursday & Sunday, Monday & Tuesday, Wednesday & Saturday, etc…) which can be frustrating, but if I have an event or something I want off for, I simply put in a request, and I have yet to be turned down.

Honestly, when all is said and done, I have greatly enjoyed my time at the English Village, but it is time to move on. To all my old co-workers, I am going to miss you guys.

English Village Korea Restaurant Class

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