1:1 English Teacher, Language Cube
Translator, CJ E&M
TOEIC, TEPS, TOEFL Teacher, Usher Academy
Business Management,Roosevelt University, Chicago
Learning a foreign language is not just adding 'spec' to your resume, but it takes your spectrum to a whole different level,
giving you much more opportunities in life, not to mention the amazing experience of developing a new character, personality, and conscience.
Hi, everyone. My name is Calvin. I've been teaching and translating English for a little more than 10 years now. I grew up in Hong Kong, and not long after our family came back to Korea, I decided to go to a high school in Michigan. Then I moved to Chicago to study business for my major. I have a lot of interests, especially for sports, music, and languages. I love swimming, playing soccer, and these days, I'm trying to learn the piano and even some Spanish! I enjoy talking, more so when it's with eating, and even more with drinking. I'm a serious carnivore, "No meat, no eat!" is my slogan. I'm so bad at eating spicy food though; chicken feet makes me cry!
I was born in Seoul, so I had to serve the military, and I did want to come back to Korea as well. Although it was quite tough in the army, I really had a priceless experience. I've been staying here in Seoul ever since! Living in different countries since childhood can definitely give you a challenge, but it did give me a better view on the world, at least when it comes to culture and how different people think differently. The more I stayed here teaching and translating, the clearer I became on the relation of the two languages. I am fascinated by the fact that I have unconsciously developed two different personalities based on the two languages I speak. I'm trying to build up another personality with Spanish!
The best thing about Korea for me is that there is practically almost everything almost everywhere, and that some of them are open 24/7! The city never sleeps! Also everything is delivered right to your doorstep, not to mention the speed of everything! The downside is that it's quite awkward and difficult to say hi to a stranger, which I think is sad. I believe myself to be an extrovert but every year here in Korea is turning me into an introvert. :( Still, I think that made me better understand Korean people who seemed reserved or shy. I think it has to do something with being evaluated and judged. I just want to say nobody is perfect, and no one can ever be! So, loosen up and be imperfect. The only way to correct mistakes is by making them.
I just try to bring in three things to my classes: entertainment, information, and the know-how. Classes should be easy and fun for the students, but at the same time, it should be very informative. But since students are only spending a limited time here at the academy, I think it's crucial to show them how they can spend their spare time to improve English on their own. At the end of the day, I believe it all comes down to how efficiently I have taught the students. I also want students to know that language is not about studying, but rather like working out at a gym. You lose weight or gain muscles and keep it that way only if you do it regularly and throughout a certain amount of time. Similarly, language won't add up if it's practiced intermittently, and even worse, it will be forgotten if you let it go for a while, just like your muscles or your shape. Another thing is understanding that language is not just words but culture as well. I try to help students understand the culture of the relative situation for them to better understand what I'm about to teach them.
I would have to give that to the student who kept asking questions in class. Although her English wasn't that great, she never stopped trying, and whenever she wasn't sure about something, she was never hesitant or afraid to stop me and ask questions. Not just that, she always tried to use what she had learned just previously! She was not the best among my students, but she definitely gave her best effort and I believe that she'll see it pay off someday soon.
Do you believe in neuroplasticity? It's a recent study proving that our brain cells, or neurons, won't simply shrink or die as we age but could actually be regenerated endlessly, AS LONG AS WE TRY. Simply put, it's never too late to start learning! I'd say English is just like working out. Don't try to cram it all in a month. Instead, just put in 15 minutes every day and do something in English, like read a short article or a book, listen to radio or podcasts, or watch youtube videos or TV shows with EN subtitles. But remember, you have to do it every single day!
There can be a number of things that can affect one's decision in choosing a teacher or an academy: the location, price, schedules, contents, etc., but I honestly think the passion and the attitude of the teachers are what matters in the end. I think 'what' teachers know is less important than 'how' they deliver it to the students. All the teachers here at EngDangi are doing our utmost to deliver as much as we can, as efficiently as we can, in the 55-minute class. We want all the students to come to class hungry, foolish, all excited, and leave the academy full, more literate, and pleased every single time. I promise it will be worth your while.