Healing The World Thru MJ & ESL

There have been a couple times in my life when I quite vividly remember Michael Jackson songs leaving a feeling with me that so permanently stuck.  I’ll start with the second story first because it isn’t as applicable to this post as the first is. 

This was during my junior year of college during Fiesta weekend.  I drank too much of a bucket at Sharkeez, however I wasn’t even drunk, but felt absolutely sick so I was sitting down moping in the corner while everyone was dancing and having a great time.  BUT, the second “Billie Jean” came on, a fire was lit under my ass and I lept up and to the dance floor I went for a good 4 minutes of hardcore dancing….ultimately retiring to my nauseafest in the corner once the song concluded.  If only for those 4 minutes, thanks to the great MJ, my night was quite complete.  Ever since then, I cannot sit down during “Billie Jean.” IT IS MY JAM.

Now on to the first story.  When I was in 5th grade, the music teacher would come around to our classroom and  teach us songs once a week.  This one week we happened to learn “Heal the World.”  I instantly FELL IN LOVE with the song and all I remember trying to do that whole period was steal the lyric sheet that the teacher handed out to us.  Then when goody-two-shoes-ol-me was too scared to steal it, I began frantically trying to write down all the lyrics.  When that got to be too much, I finally ended up stealing the sheet.  Phew!  I was determined to learn that song! Essentially, I thought the song was so beautiful and fell in love with the power behind the words at such a young age, and it is a memory of a song I will never ever forget. 

Well, this past chapter with my 5th graders, Jin and I were teaching about “What a wonderful……”  She had taught them the song “What a Wonderful World” and thought it would also be really great to teach them about the differences the world over.  The poverty, the obesity, the riches, the diseases, the fighting, the different ethnicities, the different religions and skin colors, all co-exiting together.  This is so important, especially since Korea is such a homogenous society and many will never have the chance to leave, or may never choose to leave.  It was also really special to me to have the chance to teach it to them with Jin since I had first learned the song when I was their age and it had such a lasting impact on me. After watching the video with Korean translation, one of my students ran up to me asking if she could please have a lyrics sheet.  I instantly gave her a hug and it brought me right back to when I was her age scrambling to keep those lyrics for my own.  Major heart swell.

The irony in all this is that while teaching these children about healing the world, and while I was making this video, our neighbors up above are all consumed with blowing the world up.  Anyways, below is a video of the song project that they did. Hope you enjoy 🙂


And just for fun, because I’ve had a week FILLED will Michael Jackson love, here’s another video of two of my little nerds singing, and completely GETTIN DOWN with their bad selves, to “I’ll Be There” by The Jackson 5. 

With the 6th Graders we were learning “I will….” so we learned this song as a dictation exercise.  I caught the little guy on the right totally gettin all soulful in his seat all the way in the back, so I jokingly asked him if he wanted to come to the stage up front and perform for the class, and he gladly accepted my invitation!  John, on the left, is my favorite, super nerdy, computer programmer boyfriend. I love him more than words can say. Enjoy the comedy.  This has definitely been one of my teaching English in Korea highlights 🙂


Nothin like a lil MJ to unite the freakin world.

Gangnam Styleeee

I know this is a bit tardy, but I’ve been out of the country so I couldn’t inform you of this rage over in the East, but I still wanted to, so I’m doing it now.  This video is insane.  When Brianne and I were in Boracay it came on in one of the clubs we were in and everyone lost their SHIT.  She later asked me what it was….well, now here you go, m’lady.   I don’t really know why this song is everywhere, aside from that it’s KPOP and it’s awesomely awkward and entertaining.

In case you’re wondering, Gangnam is the really richy, fancy, well-to-do part of Seoul just south of the river where lots of plastic surgery happens, and “oppa” is what the Korean girls like to call older (young) men.  Usually using a very high pitched “cute” voice.

Enjoy the sexiness…

In other news, Philippines post to come soon-ish, and I think I will begin a “Photo-a-Day” portion of this blog starting when my 2nd contract begins next week 🙂

Storytime Baby Voices!

I had my first go at story time with my 2nd, 3rd and 4th graders in afterschool class last week, and it went quite swimmingly.  The lessen consisted of reading them a story called “What is That?  Said the Cat,” playing a game of flip cup where they had to read one sentence from the story, flip the cup and then read another sentence (minus the beer of course). This game proved a wee bit harder with the little ones.  Mostly because they just couldn’t flip the darn cups with just the right amount of spring in their flip. Oh well. Last, they had to illustrate the story.  I recorded each of them reading their sentences and then put it all together in this video for my morning broadcast today. Tell me these baby voices trying to speak English aren’t the cutest things you’ve ever heard!


I’m a Celebrity

Well, not really.  But kinda.  Somehow I was nominated to be the waygook spokesperson and was interviewed (and air kissed on camera) last weekend when I went on that DMZ bike tour with Seoulites.

No one will be able to read this article, but scroll down to watch my debut Korean television appearance around the 30 second mark, and scroll even further to see the sexy group of folks I rode with.

The caption under the photo of all of us reads like this, according to Google Translate: “Fighting foreigners who participated in the DMZ bike tour is taking pictures and shouting.”  That’s exactly what we were doing.