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  • tik2018
  • Waygookin

    • 10

    • February 21, 2018, 01:05:19 pm
2 week summer and winter "camps"
« on: December 09, 2019, 01:24:29 pm »
I've been at the same school for the past two years. Whenever we have winter/summer vacations, I'm expected to teach "camps" which they claim aren't camps just summer/winter classes. I would much rather say 'nah, I'm good' and just deskwarm but I've been told we're contractually obligated to if our school requests.

However, I have no control over the format of these "camps". They always choose around 6-8 students who are generally low-level and don't want to come in the first place. They don't even show up everyday or on time. I might have 2 kids one day, 4 the next, etc. The worst part is, it's the same group of kids for 4 hours a day for 2 weeks straight, with just me alone with them in the classroom. They don't want to be there, they don't want to try to understand me or participate in activities, and they complain about not being fed, so I usually end up buying them snacks everyday out of my own pocket and bribing them with pizza for the last day of class (which is usually one of the few days that everybody actually shows up).

I mean, if I have to teach the classes, I have to teach them but can I straight up just tell my school that I'm not teaching these tiny, low-level, 4-hour long classes like that anymore? It's a waste of my time coming up with/buying materials, just to have to reevaluate when kids don't show up and don't care in the first place because the last thing they want to do is be stuck with the foreign teacher during their vacations. I've come to them with my concerns before but they pretty much brushed me off, said they'd change it and did not change it at all -.-


Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2019, 02:12:05 pm »
Quote
I would much rather say 'nah, I'm good' and just deskwarm but I've been told we're contractually obligated to if our school requests.

well, this seems like a pretty clear-cut case of "let's check my contract!", no?

sounds like you're EPIK, so here's what the sample contract states, specifically sections 1, 4 & 6:

Quote
Article 3 (Duties) The Employee shall perform the following duties in the educational institutions of the undersigned Office of Education for the period indicated above: 
   ① Assist Korean teachers with their English class(es) and/or jointly conduct English class(es) with Korean teachers, and/or lead extracurricular activities or English camps;
   ② Prepare teaching materials and lesson plans for English class(es);
   ③ Assist with and/or lead the development and creation of teaching materials related to English language education;
   ④ Assist with and/or lead activities related to English language education and other extracurricular activities such as but not limited to editing or creating English documents, judging contests, conducting teacher training, working at English camps, etc.;
   ⑤ Conduct English conversational class(es)/course(s) for Korean teachers and students; and
   ⑥ Perform other duties as designated by the Employer including various English programs during the school vacation period.

welcome to camps in Korea
« Last Edit: December 09, 2019, 02:14:57 pm by DMZabductee »


Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2019, 02:20:08 pm »
Same situation I'm in every year. I'm not exactly sure what the school gets out of these camps, but they are surprisingly very stubborn about it. A tiny class burns through the material and it's as you say, they come in with a bad attitude and don't give anything a chance. They play the games half-heartedly which results in a boring experience for everyone.  DON'T spend too much of your own money. These students are NOT grateful AT ALL. I surprisingly had some misbehaving kids that came to my camp. I thought that us bonding an extra week and doing things differently from regular class would change their behavior. We had a chill camp but they went right back to their bullshit when the new semester started. They won't be touched or impressed by your effort. Save your money.

Your school will most likely say no. The fact that they don't even give u a budget for snacks and material shows how little they care. Use that lack of care to your advantage. Find free crafts, word searches, games etc that are heavily student focused. Explain the rules in the beginning then sit back and relax while they play or do whatever. If you're lucky enough to teach it alone then let them out a bit early. I let my students leave 30  minutes early waiting to see if I'd ever get in trouble but no one ever said anything lol.


  • L I
  • Waygook Lord

    • 5075

    • October 03, 2011, 01:50:58 pm
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2019, 02:40:50 pm »
I'm not exactly sure what the school gets out of these camps, but they are surprisingly very stubborn about it.

The Korean government wants Korean kids to improve their English. Korean parents want their kids to improve their English. The K-teacher above you is paid a lot of money per camp hour. That's the incentive. Which far outweighs whether or not you and the kids want to be there.


Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #4 on: December 09, 2019, 03:01:04 pm »
Same situation I'm in every year. I'm not exactly sure what the school gets out of these camps, but they are surprisingly very stubborn about it. A tiny class burns through the material and it's as you say, they come in with a bad attitude and don't give anything a chance. They play the games half-heartedly which results in a boring experience for everyone.  DON'T spend too much of your own money. These students are NOT grateful AT ALL. I surprisingly had some misbehaving kids that came to my camp. I thought that us bonding an extra week and doing things differently from regular class would change their behavior. We had a chill camp but they went right back to their bullshit when the new semester started. They won't be touched or impressed by your effort. Save your money.

Your school will most likely say no. The fact that they don't even give u a budget for snacks and material shows how little they care. Use that lack of care to your advantage. Find free crafts, word searches, games etc that are heavily student focused. Explain the rules in the beginning then sit back and relax while they play or do whatever. If you're lucky enough to teach it alone then let them out a bit early. I let my students leave 30  minutes early waiting to see if I'd ever get in trouble but no one ever said anything lol.

As an epic teacher, that is part of the contract and your job. I don't see how one can be getting all these benefits in Korea as a teacher but then not wanting to do whats expected. I am also an EPIK teacher, for 4 years, I have had 5 week camps and then sometimes 5 day camps, depending on the schools schedule. If they have more budget and other teachers come in then I do less as not enough time for English, but if there isn't many extra classes then kids do more English.
I get kids don't all want to be there, and they hardly come to the camp and it makes it hard to plan. I have learnt to just plan it as best as I can and then adjust it during the camp depending on how many come to class and those that don't etc..
It is hard at times but its just part of our job. Making it more fun will encourage kids to participate more. Also considering  kids that are forced to go to school during vacation  are the ones that are not being able to go away or have a fun holiday with family or friends, it is even more reason to try make it something special and fun for them. It can be fun for everyone if you dedicate some time to thinking about what the kids enjoy, where they need improvement and what English activities you can find / think of. Good luck :)
« Last Edit: December 09, 2019, 03:04:04 pm by slightlylostbutoptimistic »


Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #5 on: December 09, 2019, 03:05:45 pm »
Play movies and bring a good book to read.


  • thunderlips
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1967

    • June 07, 2012, 10:01:55 am
    • South Korea
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #6 on: December 09, 2019, 05:30:53 pm »
Same situation I'm in every year. I'm not exactly sure what the school gets out of these camps, but they are surprisingly very stubborn about it. A tiny class burns through the material and it's as you say, they come in with a bad attitude and don't give anything a chance. They play the games half-heartedly which results in a boring experience for everyone.  DON'T spend too much of your own money. These students are NOT grateful AT ALL. I surprisingly had some misbehaving kids that came to my camp. I thought that us bonding an extra week and doing things differently from regular class would change their behavior. We had a chill camp but they went right back to their bullshit when the new semester started. They won't be touched or impressed by your effort. Save your money.

Your school will most likely say no. The fact that they don't even give u a budget for snacks and material shows how little they care. Use that lack of care to your advantage. Find free crafts, word searches, games etc that are heavily student focused. Explain the rules in the beginning then sit back and relax while they play or do whatever. If you're lucky enough to teach it alone then let them out a bit early. I let my students leave 30  minutes early waiting to see if I'd ever get in trouble but no one ever said anything lol.

As an epic teacher, that is part of the contract and your job. I don't see how one can be getting all these benefits in Korea as a teacher but then not wanting to do whats expected. I am also an EPIK teacher, for 4 years, I have had 5 week camps and then sometimes 5 day camps, depending on the schools schedule. If they have more budget and other teachers come in then I do less as not enough time for English, but if there isn't many extra classes then kids do more English.
I get kids don't all want to be there, and they hardly come to the camp and it makes it hard to plan. I have learnt to just plan it as best as I can and then adjust it during the camp depending on how many come to class and those that don't etc..
It is hard at times but its just part of our job. Making it more fun will encourage kids to participate more. Also considering  kids that are forced to go to school during vacation  are the ones that are not being able to go away or have a fun holiday with family or friends, it is even more reason to try make it something special and fun for them. It can be fun for everyone if you dedicate some time to thinking about what the kids enjoy, where they need improvement and what English activities you can find / think of. Good luck :)

+1
I dislike planning the camps, but they are usually easy and sometimes fun.


  • NorthStar
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1338

    • July 05, 2017, 10:54:06 am
    • Mouseville
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #7 on: December 09, 2019, 08:55:45 pm »
Quote
The Korean government wants Korean kids to improve their English. Korean parents want their kids to improve their English. The K-teacher above you is paid a lot of money per camp hour. That's the incentive. Which far outweighs whether or not you and the kids want to be there.


Easy...

Make English a pass/fail class. ..

Have homework be assigned and graded...

Speaking tests...

Korea teachers that can actually teach (and speak English)

...the list goes on and on.


 


  • Colburnnn
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1183

    • August 10, 2015, 05:52:37 pm
    • South Korea
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2019, 07:34:43 am »
Also considering  kids that are forced to go to school during vacation  are the ones that are not being able to go away or have a fun holiday with family or friends, it is even more reason to try make it something special and fun for them...

Yes, God forbid us foreigners want to go away or have a fun holiday with family or friends. Whats more, the entire staff you work with every day are off on a month break, while we get a week.

Oh what fun! Tis the season!
Haven't you got some pictures of birds to be jacking off to, son?

Colburnnn: Complains a lot, very sassy. Has a loudmouth.


  • tik2018
  • Waygookin

    • 10

    • February 21, 2018, 01:05:19 pm
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2019, 07:45:29 am »
I'm not exactly sure what the school gets out of these camps, but they are surprisingly very stubborn about it.

The Korean government wants Korean kids to improve their English. Korean parents want their kids to improve their English. The K-teacher above you is paid a lot of money per camp hour. That's the incentive. Which far outweighs whether or not you and the kids want to be there.

I sure hope my main co-teacher is not getting paid for these camp hours. He doesn't even show up. He shows up the first day for around 20 minutes to be useless, and then goes home. The only time he stayed was the official school camp that was a weekend camp for two weekends that we all got paid for. But the ones during the vacation he doesn't bother to show up.


  • Kayos
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1846

    • March 31, 2016, 07:13:57 pm
    • NZ
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #10 on: December 10, 2019, 07:46:45 am »
Same situation I'm in every year. I'm not exactly sure what the school gets out of these camps, but they are surprisingly very stubborn about it. A tiny class burns through the material and it's as you say, they come in with a bad attitude and don't give anything a chance. They play the games half-heartedly which results in a boring experience for everyone.  DON'T spend too much of your own money. These students are NOT grateful AT ALL. I surprisingly had some misbehaving kids that came to my camp. I thought that us bonding an extra week and doing things differently from regular class would change their behavior. We had a chill camp but they went right back to their bullshit when the new semester started. They won't be touched or impressed by your effort. Save your money.

Your school will most likely say no. The fact that they don't even give u a budget for snacks and material shows how little they care. Use that lack of care to your advantage. Find free crafts, word searches, games etc that are heavily student focused. Explain the rules in the beginning then sit back and relax while they play or do whatever. If you're lucky enough to teach it alone then let them out a bit early. I let my students leave 30  minutes early waiting to see if I'd ever get in trouble but no one ever said anything lol.

My boss actually makes me let them go early, as he is usually the Korean teacher deskwarming at the school during vacation, and he wants to go out to eat lunch, and wants to do so a bit earlier haha.


  • tik2018
  • Waygookin

    • 10

    • February 21, 2018, 01:05:19 pm
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #11 on: December 10, 2019, 07:58:43 am »
Same situation I'm in every year. I'm not exactly sure what the school gets out of these camps, but they are surprisingly very stubborn about it. A tiny class burns through the material and it's as you say, they come in with a bad attitude and don't give anything a chance. They play the games half-heartedly which results in a boring experience for everyone.  DON'T spend too much of your own money. These students are NOT grateful AT ALL. I surprisingly had some misbehaving kids that came to my camp. I thought that us bonding an extra week and doing things differently from regular class would change their behavior. We had a chill camp but they went right back to their bullshit when the new semester started. They won't be touched or impressed by your effort. Save your money.

Your school will most likely say no. The fact that they don't even give u a budget for snacks and material shows how little they care. Use that lack of care to your advantage. Find free crafts, word searches, games etc that are heavily student focused. Explain the rules in the beginning then sit back and relax while they play or do whatever. If you're lucky enough to teach it alone then let them out a bit early. I let my students leave 30  minutes early waiting to see if I'd ever get in trouble but no one ever said anything lol.

As an epic teacher, that is part of the contract and your job. I don't see how one can be getting all these benefits in Korea as a teacher but then not wanting to do whats expected. I am also an EPIK teacher, for 4 years, I have had 5 week camps and then sometimes 5 day camps, depending on the schools schedule. If they have more budget and other teachers come in then I do less as not enough time for English, but if there isn't many extra classes then kids do more English.
I get kids don't all want to be there, and they hardly come to the camp and it makes it hard to plan. I have learnt to just plan it as best as I can and then adjust it during the camp depending on how many come to class and those that don't etc..
It is hard at times but its just part of our job. Making it more fun will encourage kids to participate more. Also considering  kids that are forced to go to school during vacation  are the ones that are not being able to go away or have a fun holiday with family or friends, it is even more reason to try make it something special and fun for them. It can be fun for everyone if you dedicate some time to thinking about what the kids enjoy, where they need improvement and what English activities you can find / think of. Good luck :)

It's not about not doing what's expected. I'm just tired of the b.s. I don't mind doing the work I'm supposed to do and if the kids actually wanted to be there I would be thrilled. But obviously the school just does it to do it and doesn't actually care. I have kids who love learning English. I have kids who are high level. My third grade classes have even said they would love to take part of English camp. But I have no control over anything. They choose random kids (generally bad-behaved and rude), that don't speak English and don't want to be there. You try to play games, they don't participate. You play a movie, they zone out or sleep. You give them any kind of paper/worksheet/creative assignment, they don't do it. It's gotten much worse this year. I'm not saying every single camp has been hell. I had one camp (my very first one) and it was great because my 2nd graders (now 3rd graders) were actually interested. I had about 16 kids and some of them were pretty high-level but they all participated and wanted to be there. They still talk about how much fun it was as 3rd graders now.
And there is no budget and no other teachers. We get thrown into a random classroom together for 4 hours. It's just too much. Even if they got 2 groups of kids for 2 hours each I'd stop complaining. But they don't care what the children are actually doing. And they don't care what I'm doing as long as we're just there.


  • oglop
  • The Legend

    • 4252

    • August 25, 2011, 07:24:54 pm
    • Seoul
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #12 on: December 10, 2019, 08:02:11 am »
Same situation I'm in every year. I'm not exactly sure what the school gets out of these camps, but they are surprisingly very stubborn about it. A tiny class burns through the material and it's as you say, they come in with a bad attitude and don't give anything a chance. They play the games half-heartedly which results in a boring experience for everyone.  DON'T spend too much of your own money. These students are NOT grateful AT ALL. I surprisingly had some misbehaving kids that came to my camp. I thought that us bonding an extra week and doing things differently from regular class would change their behavior. We had a chill camp but they went right back to their bullshit when the new semester started. They won't be touched or impressed by your effort. Save your money.

Your school will most likely say no. The fact that they don't even give u a budget for snacks and material shows how little they care. Use that lack of care to your advantage. Find free crafts, word searches, games etc that are heavily student focused. Explain the rules in the beginning then sit back and relax while they play or do whatever. If you're lucky enough to teach it alone then let them out a bit early. I let my students leave 30  minutes early waiting to see if I'd ever get in trouble but no one ever said anything lol.
true. the amount of effort i put into camps was directly correlated with how much the kids/parents/english dept/vice principal/principal cared about camp: which was 0



  • L I
  • Waygook Lord

    • 5075

    • October 03, 2011, 01:50:58 pm
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #13 on: December 10, 2019, 08:12:29 am »
The Koreans do care about the camps and want the kids to learn English. That is the purpose of the camp. The expectation is the NET will improve the children's English ability via these camps.

The problem is the kids usually don't want to be there but rather were forced to attend, aren't afraid of the NET, and aren't being graded at the camp... which makes the students hard to teach.


  • waygo0k
  • The Legend

    • 4200

    • September 27, 2011, 11:51:01 am
    • Chungnam
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #14 on: December 10, 2019, 08:13:56 am »
The school gets allocated a budget for camps at the start of the year.

The majority of this budget, however, is spent elsewhere...but the school still needs to show that they had the camps as was budgeted for. That's where you (and camp) come in.

Other teachers and parents want a bit of free time away from kids during vacation...that's where you (and camp) come in.

In some families,. both parents are working and they need a babysitting service for a few hours...that's where you (and camp) come in.


  • oglop
  • The Legend

    • 4252

    • August 25, 2011, 07:24:54 pm
    • Seoul
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #15 on: December 10, 2019, 08:22:32 am »
The Koreans do care about the camps and want the kids to learn English. That is the purpose of the camp. The expectation is the NET will improve the children's English ability via these camps.

The problem is the kids usually don't want to be there but rather were forced to attend, aren't afraid of the NET, and aren't being graded at the camp... which makes the students hard to teach.
"please plan a fun and detailed camp for an unknown numbers of students, with an unknown level of english. we don't know the grade yet either. oh, did i say it must be fun? but also very educational. oh, by the way, you will no budget and you can't leave the classroom"


  • L I
  • Waygook Lord

    • 5075

    • October 03, 2011, 01:50:58 pm
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #16 on: December 10, 2019, 08:27:15 am »
I sure hope my main co-teacher is not getting paid for these camp hours. He doesn't even show up. He shows up the first day for around 20 minutes to be useless, and then goes home.

I guarantee he's being paid for every camp hour you do- 25k an hour. That's where the camp budget money goes. That and supplies and snacks. But mostly to pay the K-teacher. That's incentivisation to not forget to schedule camps each summer and winter and to make them as long as possible.

In my opinion the reason the ten day extra vacation renewal bonus was taken away was to fit in more and longer camp time. (Maybe K-teachers lobbied for that?)


  • tik2018
  • Waygookin

    • 10

    • February 21, 2018, 01:05:19 pm
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #17 on: December 10, 2019, 08:35:26 am »
The Koreans do care about the camps and want the kids to learn English. That is the purpose of the camp. The expectation is the NET will improve the children's English ability via these camps.

The problem is the kids usually don't want to be there but rather were forced to attend, aren't afraid of the NET, and aren't being graded at the camp... which makes the students hard to teach.

Which ones care? One of my other coteachers has told me multiple times to stop stressing and putting effort into classes and camps. She literally said to my face that the kids are stupid because they don't have money and they don't need to learn. Just play games with them or let them watch movies/interesting videos. They don't appreciate or deserve any extra effort. She also said (with a smile on her face) "Just give up, don't try to teach them. I gave up a long time ago"


  • L I
  • Waygook Lord

    • 5075

    • October 03, 2011, 01:50:58 pm
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #18 on: December 10, 2019, 08:47:42 am »
Pretty sure the education office wants NETs to actually teach. Same with the parents.


  • 303lmc
  • Veteran

    • 161

    • March 05, 2019, 05:23:12 pm
    • Gwangju
Re: 2 week summer and winter "camps"
« Reply #19 on: December 10, 2019, 09:46:03 am »
wow, NO budget?? i have a HUGE budget that KT's want a piece of. I also have long camps for 2 weeks. I am doing a phonics camp and then a movie camp.
I would also recommend NOT spending your money on any thing, including snacks. maybe the first day let them know to bring a snack from home.
do you have origami paper? i find my students like origami and are pretty good at it. I also print off color pages for the younger classes.
show videos and do role playing, that's free! or writing and drawing projects, make a poster of what we learned today.
but I feel you on them not wanting to be there, not coming every day, not caring at all. I just do what I said I would and have extra videos, games and color pages on hand for when something takes less time. if it comes down to it, 20 minutes of go fish or UNO will work too.