One of my favorite things about working for POLY is that working on Saturdays are a rarity. In fact, my contract states that only 2 Saturdays are required – one in March and one in September. The reason is POLY holds a nation-wide conference for teacher training. The one in March was held in Incheon and the one this past weekend as held in Ilsan. I met up with the other teachers at school at 8:50am. Armed with a McMuffin meal and a backpack full of snacks, I was ready to tackle my second conference of the year. The bus ride to Ilsan took about 40 minutes. I was able to squeeze in a 20 minute nap.
The first thing on the list was taking the mandatory campus attendance photo. Other schools got in line nicely and placed their bags on the designated bench. My school decided to cut the line by quickly dropping our bags down to the side and quickly scooting in front of the camera hahaha. I will most likely look like someone’s little sister in this photo again. We were given our name tags and schedules inside. I was given all the workshops I signed up for. This time, I opted for more the child psychology/student guidance-based workshops vs. the subject training ones. Poly decided to have this random scavenger hunt to introduce their new rebranding tactics. It was called the “POLY Identity Tour” and we had to collect five stamps in order to win a tote bag. Let’s just say I was over-competitive. I ran around collecting the stamps even though it was unnecessary to run. The last task was to say the POLY slogan “Learn Today, Lead Tomorrow.” I yelled it in unison with my co-worker Martha hahahaha.
The first workshop was pretty standard. Nothing too new or exciting. The most exciting part of the day was the lunch buffet. My workshop host finished slightly early so we were given a head start. Lunch was good as usual. I think the Incheon buffet was slightly better and had more choices. Nevertheless, I ate my fair share of the buffet. Let’s just say Seongbuk POLY knows how to get down at a buffet 😀
There were 4 more workshops after lunch. The phonics workshop was less than stellar. Comprehensible Input was was all right as well. The last two – Postive Guidance and Cultivating Interest – were really good. Positive Guidance makes me want to be a better teacher. Cultivating Interest just made me miss working at Chungdahm. The presenter is an Academic Coordinator from Bundang who’s super creative. He created a school newspaper and regularly uses media/pop culture to gage the interests of his students. He also showed a UCC video he made with some of his students. I pretty much lost it at that point. I used to do that too… Part of me feels like that whole workshop should’ve been called “Why I’m an Awesome Teacher…” But he was such a good presenter/public speaker and I thoroughly enjoyed his workshop.
We stayed for the mandatory workshop photo afterwards. Crystal and I got lost from Seongbuk and ended up mixed in somewhere in the crowd. The bus ride home was a bit longer with the evening traffic but it was fun nonetheless. We had a good ol’ time talking about the lovely kids of Seongbuk. I really do work with some great people and I appreciate them more and more every single day. Stephanie and I decided to get Panda Express upon returning to the main part of Seoul. Best decision ever.
Here’s the tote bag I won from the scavenger hunt:
Here’s the conference gift they gave us this time – a POLY USB!: