REFOCUSED

Online, in-service training for GETs in South Korea through the English Program in Korea (EPIK).

As a Guest English Teacher (GET) through the English Program in Korea (EPIK), I was required to complete 15 hours of online, in-service training. Of course I left it until the last possible moment (and I barely listened to a word). But, it did help me refocus after a random two-month break from regular classes.

I’ve decided to no longer use technology as a crutch in the classroom. If it doesn’t add to a lesson, it distracts from. So much of what I do revolves around the use of a computer. It’s easy and gets the job done. But, “Never forget the value of a blank piece of paper.”

I truly believe the best teachers work together with students. Learning is a process in which both the teacher and learner must play an equal part. Somehow it seems students are often overlooked, or even left out of the learning process completely. I vow to always view my students as partners.

I’ve found classroom management is simply reacting to situations and circumstances accordingly. I’ll continue to remain calm and collected, even in times of frustration. I may not always have control of a class, but I should always stay in control of myself.

I want to to be the kind of teacher that gets better with every lesson. And I want to go beyond what’s expected. Not just academically, but especially when it comes to investing in my students’ lives outside of the classroom. Those seeking a special connection give even more reason to put in the extra effort.

Even though I didn’t get much out of the in-service, online training, I'm refocused. As I prepare to begin my second semester of teaching in Korea, I remain thankful for the opportunity to be here.

Please note: The quote, and many of my thoughts come out of lessons from EPIK's In-Service Training.

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