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If you are teaching English in Korea or planning on it here are some tips for teaching your Korean students. I spent 3.5 years out of my time in Asia teaching in Korea. In my experience teaching in China, Korea and Taiwan I would say that the teaching part is not that different.

What's different is the school that you work in and the culture, but most of that extends outside the classroom.

Here's a video that was filmed in hagwons and public schools in Korea. It includes 3 games and activities (one of the tips below) that you can use in you classroom.


So in no specific order:

  1. Move. Move around the classroom as you teach and get them to move too.
  2. Games & activities. Use appropriate games and activities. These should not be a diversion from the lesson, but be integrated into the lesson.
  3. Variety. Use a lot of variety in your lessons.
  4. Classroom rules. You need rules in your classroom especially if you are teaching children. For example, no cell phones, disrespect, name calling, or Korean (unless they raise their hand and ask) in the classroom.
  5. Simplify your language. You need to speak to your students in a language that they understand.
  6. Don't yell. Yelling doesn't work most of the time. Stay in control.
  7. Plan. You need to plan your lessons out ahead of time.
  8. Improvise. Sometimes things don't go as planned for a variety of reasons. When that happens you'll need some back-up ideas on hand.
  9. Repetition. You need a lot of repetition to learn anything. Make sure you use a lot of repetition in your lessons especially if you are teaching lower levels. You can balance the repetition by using games, activities and variety. 
  10. Take a targeted course for teaching in Korea like this one.

Do you want to enjoy teaching in Korea?

Are you teaching mostly children? If you really want to improve your situation and get more confident in that classroom then take this advanced course.

"I am an experienced teacher having taught Science and Gifted Education in the US for ten years prior to coming to Taiwan. Although teacher prep programs will help, many aspects of teaching EFL are unique. I wish I would have taken this course BEFORE I started teaching here three years ago. The methods and insights given in ESL Insider's 120 hour TEFL course could have saved me a lot of grief and disappointment. Now I am optimistic about starting a new school year armed with better lessons and a realigned perspective. Thank you, ESL Insider!" - Dolly M.