Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Children's Day

On May 5th, while Americans (and a few Mexicans) were celebrating Cinco de Mayo, Koreans were celebrating Children's Day. This is a hugely important holiday in Korea. Stores, restaurants, and schools close down and kids are given a short reprieve from all of their academies (after-school cram schools).

Sangmyeong Elementary celebrated Children's Day with a sports/games day, and then gave us the next two days off for a nice 4 day weekend. On sports day, the kids played games like tug-of-war, relay races, and watched their teachers arm wrestle each other. The foreign teachers (including Chris and I) even competed in a relay race with some of the students' parents. We lost horribly, leading us to believe that the parents chosen to race must have been Olympic hopefuls. We were actually told to throw the race and let the parents win (keep those paychecks comin'), so we could use that as an excuse, but the truth is we tried our hardest.

First, 3rd through 5th grade lined up to do their stretches (see video below)

This is the national stretching routine of Korea, as performed by the students of Sangmyeong Elementary School.

Waiting patiently for their turn.

When given free time, girls climb things and look adorable.

Boys make weapons and say "Son of Bitch"

This is a thing that kids do.

Best dressed baby: acid wash jeans, polo with popped collar, belt, name brand boxers.

Susie: "Laura Teacher do you live with Chris Teacher?"
Me: "No, I live right here. Outside on these stairs."
Susie: "That is ridiculous!"

Susie (after messing up my hair): "Laura Teacher please brush your hair, Chris Teacher will be so surprised!"

This kid wears suspenders everyday with his uniform. Sometimes I pick him up by the suspenders because he's also really badly behaved.

If I played favorites, Kevin would be the winner.

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