From the BK to the SK
 
I know that when we were little, my friends and I did play a fair amount of "Rock, Paper, Scissor" games at lunch time or maybe at recess or while we were bored, but we didn't play beyond probably the fourth grade (fifth tops).
In Korea, '가위 , 바위, 보 ('gawi, bawi, bo' or 'paper, rock, scissors')!' is a do-or-die game.
As you already know from reading my blogs the past 10 months, my students are mostly all 14 and 15 years old, so like 8th grade and 9th grade at home in the States. I know for a fact my friends and I weren't still playing rock, paper, scissors.
But, since the day I arrived, I have been fascinated with the amount of 가위 , 바위, 보 games I've seen. If we do a game in class where one person from each team has to speak, for example, the decision is made based on the person who loses at gawi, bawi, bo. It goes on for many, many rounds and can invovle anywhere from two people to 30 people.
I have actually played before with my entire class when we've had about 5 minutes to kill. I stand at the front of the classroom, "GAWI, BAWI, BO!" and throw up either a rock, paper or scissors, and then you have to very quickly keep saying "BO! (change your 'weapon'), BO (change your weapon again)!", etc. until there is only one student left in the class playing against me.
There are other variations of it, also. In some games, students will play and start facing each other, and each time a person loses, he or she must take one step away from the opponent. Games have stretched down hallways before during lunchtime or recess, with students screaming "GAWI, BAWI, BO! BO! BO! BO!"
Other time, the penality could be getting your hand slapped, your head flicked or your cheek slapped.
It just makes me laugh that these kids are still so old, but it is like they put their lives on the line with games of gawi, bawi, bo. Even the 'cool' students amd popular kids could play endless rounds of gawi, bawi, bo. It's just the thing to do in Korea. I will admit that on some weekend nights my friends and I will play a few rounds as part of a drinking game, or, when my girlfriends and I can't reach a decision on where to go or what to do, we jokingly will say, "OK, settle it with "gawi, bawi, bo." I won against my one friend two weekends ago, and so she had to stay out with us for another hour. I know, I'm a pro.
Other than that, this has been a fairly good week. I've been doing Justin Bieber "Baby" lyrics with my students, so I've been laughing basically for two weeks straight (and I officially know every word to the song). I had one of my favorite third grade classes yesterday and felt so happy after it. When I told them I was leaving to go to USA for my brother's wedding, my one favorite student asked, "Teacher, your sign on my arm, please?", so I signed his arm! Haha.
Anyway, it won't be long before I am back Stateside. I feel like when I go to order coffee or food and the person asks me in English what I want, I will be really taken back. It's definitely going to be culture shock. This is officially the longest I've been out of the country - officially ten months!
Well, one week until my brother's wedding, then back to Korea and traveling for the next nine months!
 


Dad
06/17/2011 05:13

I cant wait to see you.

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