After class ended, we had our first cultural club meetings. I was put in the music class, in which we learn how to play a traditional Korean drum called 장구. My first choice was cooking, but the drums now seem equally as fun! There’s a lot more technique that goes into playing this drum than you would expect (or maybe that’s just me). There’s a certain place on the drum you have strike, a certain way to hold the sticks, and a certain way to keep the drum in place with your feet. By the end of today’s lesson, we were physically exhausted, and I had an acute aching sensation on my left pinky from the way we had to hold the stick.
But we still had enough energy to go explore more of Seoul. A group including myself and three other awesome NSLI-Yians spontaneously decided to go Yeouido to see the Han River. Continue reading
It was an exceptionally long and wonderful day. Continue reading
I crashed last night before I could write anything down, but yesterday was amazing. Continue reading
So there was definitely a lot more that happened today!
Most of the day was presentations about topics like being a citizen ambassador, being safe in Korea, being an active language learner, being a good host student, etc. While I was slightly tired by the end of it all, I didn’t hate listening to people speak about the program for hours. If anything, it just reaffirmed my passion and reason for wanting to join NSLI-Y in the first place. Continue reading
I woke up this morning to jitters and my digestive system waging war on me. My mom made my favorite breakfast (upma) and a cup of chai, and we were off. Continue reading
TEN DAYS LEFT!
Our implementing organization, iEARN, emailed us all a S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Relevant, Time-bound) goal setting worksheet to complete by Pre-departure Orientation. They had us list out a language learning goal, a goal for building cultural understanding, and how exactly we plan to achieve these goals. They weren’t exactly all that interesting (viewable through this link), but they got me thinking about what my personal goals are for the six weeks I’ll be spending in Korea. Continue reading
18 days left!
The moment we entered June, I began freaking out. I can’t believe it’s so close. I swear it was just a few days ago that we were counting down from sixty days in our group chat…
Needless to say, I’m the most excited I’ve ever been in my life. But it’d be a lie if I said that I’m not nervous. I’ve never been away from home so long, and I have a pretty justified fear of getting lost. It’s so much worse than whatever you’re thinking. I get lost within buildings. Within hallways…that I’ve been in before…
And the thought of navigating my way in a foreign country where I need to coherently articulate myself in Korean if I end up getting lost is just a tad bit overwhelming.
But hey! There’s so much more to look forward to, and even I can’t get lost every day.
It also occurred to me that there’s a lot I meant to write about in this past month. To any prospective NSLI-Y students, know that the months after you’re accepted leading up to your departure are filled up with preparation.
There’s video conferences where you meet your residence directors, your oral proficiency interview (if you have prior knowledge of the language), A LOT OF FORMS TO FILL OUT, pre-program language preparation, thinking about what gifts to bring your host family (which I’ve kind of done), and thinking about what to pack in general (which I haven’t done at all).
So this isn’t actually all that much. It’s just that balancing all of this with the last few weeks of school (A.K.A last-minute finals cramming) can make you feel a bit stressed out. But now that school’s finally out, everything’s so much easier to deal with it. I don’t know how the kids getting out a few days before departure are staying sane.
So, I want to go more in depth about some of what I’ve mentioned above, but it’s not super exciting. Read on if you’re curious, but you won’t hurt my feelings if you couldn’t care less. Continue reading
So I did it! I studied Korean every single day for thirty days. As someone who struggles with procrastination and creating structured study plans, I was really happy with the consistency I achieved through this challenge.
My attempted weekly blogging schedule, on the other hand, wasn’t as successful…
In this post, you will find:
- A dreadfully late recap on the last two weeks of this challenge
- Details on how exactly I studied
- A video I recorded of myself speaking about the challenge in Korean!
End of week two!
I’m incredibly pleased to say that I’ve consistently studied Korean every day for the past two weeks. I wanted to write a short update about how I went about studying this week and some challenges I noticed. Continue reading
I took up a challenge to study Korean for thirty days while setting goals and logging hours. The overall goal is to experiment with different studying techniques and create a sustainable daily routine that I’ll eventually be able to stick to and use each day, even after the challenge has ended. At the end of the thirty days, I’ll create a video of myself talking about the challenge in Korean.
Today, I wanted to write a bit about how I’ve studied this past week and what I’ve gained from it. Continue reading