On Friday, I started my Grade 6 classes with the usual questions. It was rainy, gloomy and slightly chilly. The students all wore the bored, zombie-like expressions common to pre-teens the world over. Sighing inwardly, I pasted on my best “Golly gee, isn’t English fun?” smile and asked my first question in an overly cheerful voice.
“How is everyone today?”
“Mumble, mumble, snort.” (There were also many heavy sighs of complete and utter boredom.)
“Me too! What day is it today?”
“Good job! Friday! Aren’t you excited? I’m excited!” I clapped my hands to illustrate my excitement and hopefully startle a few of them out of their lethargy. No reaction.
“Right. Well then…. how’s the weather today?”
Hands shot up. I was so startled I swear it took me a full minute to actually call on someone.
“You know typhoon? Is coming!”
Suddenly everyone was involved. Typhoons were clearly big news. I pretended I’d never experienced a typhoon to keep the discussion going.
“Oh? What should I do?”
“Bread. Many bread. You buy.”
The same thing happened in all five of my classes on Friday. The students came alive to tell me about the typhoon and to recommend I buy bread, and then slipped back into their pre-pubescent angst filled stupor. It was amazing. Why did they want me to buy bread?
Later I asked my co-T.
“Good idea, Carrie-teacher,” she told me, nodding. “You buy bread.”
And so I bought bread. I have no idea why I might be needing bread but I now have three kinds – wholegrain, pumpkin and sesame, and black bean and walnut. You never know what kind of bread you might need.
I lived in Japan for four years and experienced all sorts of typhoons but never once did I need bread. Perhaps Korean typhoons are different? We shall see when Typhoon Sanba arrives tonight!