So what does an English Elementary School Teacher's life in Seoul look like? Let's look at it closer.
7:30 I wake up, take a shower, and eat breakfast.
8:20. I walk to work. I live really close to work (around a 6 minute walk now), so I can afford to leave pretty late. Sometimes I get a cheap, 2,000 won iced Americano to boost my energy from the local coffee shop.
8:30-9. I arrive at school. I usually go on my computer, make last minute copies of worksheets and make sure I'm prepared for my next classes.
9. My first class starts. I start the classes with a big "Hello, class!" and we go over the date, and sometimes talk about the weather and how we are feeling that day. Then we normally watch an intro video or song, sometimes do a vocabulary powerpoint that I have made, and go through the textbook activities. Then, on days that we have time and the students are good, we do English games or activities.
-On Thursdays, I just have 4 classes. Each class is 40 minutes long, usually with a 10 minute break in between.
9-12:20. I teach my 4 classes, and then we have lunch break. There is a 20 minute break from 10:20-10:40.
12:20. I go to lunch with my coteachers, and we sit at a separate teacher's table in the lunchroom. However, this is different at every school. Some teachers sit at the same table as their students. Our homeroom teachers sit at the tables with their students. At our lunch, we have a separate line for teachers and one for students. Teachers get their food self-serve, and are allowed unlimited servings (but sometimes there are restrictions on the amount of fruit you can get). There is always rice, a soup, kimchi, and then some sort of meat selection (however sometimes it's fish, eggs, or tofu), and some sort of side of vegetables or sometimes potatoes. Although this isn't shown in the picture, at my school fruit is given for desert every day (though sometimes replaced as yogurt for a rare treat). Our fruit is usually either apples, pear, watermelon, or kiwis. A few times a month my school likes to do "foreign food Wednesday", and maybe have something like spaghetti. The lunches are usually pretty good, and they are very healthy. I like knowing that I can come to school and at least get a few servings of vegetables and fruit in. Additionally, the lunches are only 3,000 won ($2.60). You can opt out if you want, but I feel like I couldn't make or bring as filling and healthy of a lunch for 3,000 won, so I like them.
4:30. Time to go home! No one works late at my school. At 4:30 on the dot my fellow coteachers are hurrying out the door to get home as soon as possible. Pretty different than teachers in America, who stay late grading papers or take loads of work home.
My afternoons and evenings: spent exploring Seoul, going out to dinner with friends, working out at the gym, and going to nearby coffee shop and movie theaters. On the weekends I like to go hiking in Seoul with the amazingly rugged mountains that are all so close. You're never bored in Seoul.
And that's a day in the life of an SMOE teacher! I want to hear from other teachers, in other countries or parts of Korea. Is your daily life as a teacher here in Korea similar?