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  • Anbairui
  • Waygookin

    • 23

    • December 18, 2013, 02:05:02 pm
    • Daejeon, Korea
Evolution in Korea?
« on: June 22, 2016, 10:26:16 am »
I'm finishing my science camp plans, and I need just a few more activities.  I have an idea for teaching evolution that I'd like to do.  However, I'm from America, and evolution is a controversial class subject there.  I remember my teacher devoting an entire period in my high school biology class to discuss that evolution is just a theory, and that students may consider creationism/intelligent design to be equal theories.  This was in Minnesota, which is not a highly religious state, so I imagine it was even more controversial elsewhere.

Personally, I feel like there should be no conflict teaching evolution in my science camp.  However, if it is anything like America, I feel I will have to approach the topic very carefully, if at all.  My coteachers are highly religious, and one of them often discusses religion in class.  Has anyone had experience teaching evolution in Korea?


  • ryncarr
  • Explorer

    • 8

    • June 29, 2015, 07:53:17 am
    • Hadan
Re: Evolution in Korea?
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2016, 12:11:37 pm »
I don't have experience teaching that topic but I support you in doing it.

It's science camp so personal opinions aren't required (from your Religious Co-T)

Just evidence based theories

Sounds really exciting. Let us know how it goes.


  • hephoto
  • Waygookin

    • 17

    • April 07, 2016, 01:37:38 pm
    • Daejeon
Re: Evolution in Korea?
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2016, 12:18:21 pm »
I think this depends on your actual approach to evolution.  If you are going to use the Big Bang/Darwin Apes approach, you may have some trouble.  If you merely intend to teach about evolution from the "growth of intelligence and abilities within an already created world" stand point, then I think you are safe.

As you mentioned, your co-teacher is highly religious, as are many Koreans.  I myself have a faith, of sorts.  When I teach Christmas, however, I stick to the non-controversial things like presents and food.  I touch on what Christmas means to me and to others around the world but I don't teach it as an absolute.


Re: Evolution in Korea?
« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2016, 12:52:05 pm »
I think you should teach evolution, however I would tread lightly.  I also have a religious co-teacher.  To give you an idea of what you might expect, I recently had a picture of a monkey making a funny face on one of my power points.  She stopped my class so that she could chastise me for "reminding her of evolution" and how the world was actually created in seven days by God, etc. I didn't even mention the word "evolution".  I was teaching emotions and it was just a monkey and now I'm no longer allowed to use monkeys in my presentations.  So god speed and good luck!


  • Anbairui
  • Waygookin

    • 23

    • December 18, 2013, 02:05:02 pm
    • Daejeon, Korea
Re: Evolution in Korea?
« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2016, 01:13:56 pm »
I don't actually plan on using the word "evolution," which is why I haven't found a good way to ask the question.  Basically, my idea is to show the students different animals, and different features they might have.  For example, camouflage to hide, fur/blubber for warmth, different types of teeth for different types of food, eyes of predators vs. eyes of prey, and things like that.  Eventually, I want to allow the students to randomly choose conditions such as the animal's environment, food, size, if it is nocturnal, etc.  Then they will design an animal that would be successful in those conditions, and discuss how/why they made those decisions.


  • Mr C
  • The Legend

    • 3023

    • October 17, 2012, 03:00:40 pm
    • Seoul
Re: Evolution in Korea?
« Reply #5 on: June 22, 2016, 01:41:33 pm »
I don't actually plan on using the word "evolution," which is why I haven't found a good way to ask the question.  Basically, my idea is to show the students different animals, and different features they might have.  For example, camouflage to hide, fur/blubber for warmth, different types of teeth for different types of food, eyes of predators vs. eyes of prey, and things like that.  Eventually, I want to allow the students to randomly choose conditions such as the animal's environment, food, size, if it is nocturnal, etc.  Then they will design an animal that would be successful in those conditions, and discuss how/why they made those decisions.
I think the word you want is "adaptation".


  • amgoalng
  • Expert Waygook

    • 719

    • August 31, 2012, 08:00:20 am
    • Gobuk, near Seosan, closer to Haemi
Re: Evolution in Korea?
« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2016, 02:12:21 pm »
Personally, I would talk about the evidence for global warming and what you can do to help it.  That would make your camp informative and helpful. 

If you do evolution, do micro-evolution / adaptation.  That can lead into talking about antibiotic resistant bacteria.  It can really help to encourage your students to wash their hands.  I am sure the parents would love to hear, "My child took your camp and now they always wash their hands before eating!"  My parents would.


  • peachkitten
  • Veteran

    • 166

    • June 15, 2013, 03:38:06 am
    • Seoul, Republic of Korea
Re: Evolution in Korea?
« Reply #7 on: June 22, 2016, 02:18:04 pm »
I think you should teach evolution, however I would tread lightly.  I also have a religious co-teacher.  To give you an idea of what you might expect, I recently had a picture of a monkey making a funny face on one of my power points.  She stopped my class so that she could chastise me for "reminding her of evolution" and how the world was actually created in seven days by God, etc. I didn't even mention the word "evolution".  I was teaching emotions and it was just a monkey and now I'm no longer allowed to use monkeys in my presentations.  So god speed and good luck!

oh my god (pun intended)  ;D


  • euclid229
  • Waygookin

    • 20

    • March 01, 2015, 09:25:44 pm
    • Gwangju
Re: Evolution in Korea?
« Reply #8 on: June 22, 2016, 02:42:59 pm »
From a quick search online, it seems that while some Koreans have advocated to remove evolution from textbooks/the curriculum (specifically in 2012), it is still a part of their national curriculum (looks like they're supposed to learn about it in 10th grade), so you shouldn't get in too much /official/ trouble for using it.

You'd probably still want to run the activity by your co-teacher ahead of time, just so they don't get upset in class and make things awkward.

The curriculum:
http://ncic.kice.re.kr/english.kri.org.inventoryList.do?pOrgNo=10000532

The curriculum as of 2015 (in korean)
http://ncic.kice.re.kr/nation.kri.org.inventoryList.do?pOrgNo=10058777