An Ode to My Special English Program

As our academic year winds down, exam preparations begin and my students look forward to a month of vacation in January.  My grade 6 kids will be off to middle school soon and my grade 5 kids will be the new seniors; ruling student government and being the cool kids to all those younger than they are.


All year I’ve been teaching an advanced English program with one of my Korean co-teachers and we have come to call it the Special English Program. We interviewed around 30 kids who were interested from 5th and 6th grade and those who passed the written and spoken entrance test were accepted as our latest gang of English elites. Last year was our first year running this program and we had some bumps in the road but we still had a good time. Below are some pics from last year’s group.

20141105_152301 20141105_152325 20141105_152541

This year has been just as rewarding with my new batch of kiddies. I don’t mean to get all mushy but I must say I’m just so darn proud of them all. Watching them grow in confidence, increase public speaking abilities and just enjoy being in a special club with me has been so much fun. During my class time we’ve been reading books together, books from the Dominoes series from Oxford University Press (in case any teacher friends would like to check them out). Dominoes books have 4 levels to choose from: Starter, level one, two and three. My kids started out with a “starter” level book and by the end of the year we’ll be reading at level 2. They can see the level increase in their books and take pride in tackling the higher levels as we go along. Here’s a look at some of the books we read.

journey mummy lost

It’s pretty cool content! I learned a lot about Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, ancient Egyptian rituals and Tutankhamun in the process. The kids especially like that some stories are true (like The Curse of the Mummy) and that others are ESL versions of legitimate classics in the English-speaking world. Below is this year’s group:

20150624_161540 20150624_161548

This week we had an open class where the students and teachers could come in and watch our lesson. I had to teach while spectators watched so as an added treat, I made a video for my kids that reviewed our year of shenanigans. I’d like to share that video with you here, so please take a look and enjoy a five minute break from your day:

We have one more book to read – The Lost World, followed by watching Jurassic Park – woo hoo! – then our time will be up. I hope to make our last six weeks together as memorable as possible so bring on the dinosaurs!

3 thoughts on “An Ode to My Special English Program

  1. Hi Karli, what a nice reflection piece on a part of the world i’ll never see. Thank you for bringing it to me! Hope you had a thoughtful Remembrance Day – Dave turned 55!! Love and miss you tons, Aunt Boo xoxo

  2. Great job darlin’. You have sweet skills and best of all, it looks like your students had a blast learning in your class!
    Lots of love xoxoxoxo

  3. Hey Karluchi!
    To read of the success and enthusiasm of your English language students is a compliment to you as a teacher, a very good teacher, who takes so much pride in what you do. Who knows the role in life these young students will play in part because of your efforts to encourage them to do their best and not just make an effort. So Karluchi –youse sure have done good and me and the Wife are sure proud of youse. And don’t take no wooden nickels neither!
    love, nana and gramp xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

* 1+5=?