Category: Cultural bumps & perceptions

Relationships between Korean students and American teachers

Here’s a Korean’s view on the cultural differences between dealing with teachers in Korea and in America. One aspect of American culture I really cannot adapt to is the way students behave to their teachers. English has no honorifics so there is no way of speaking with respect to older people. I cannot call a […]

Beyond culture shock: he blew his nose in class

A fun story from one of my students: When I first went to America there were many things i wasn’t familiar with. The most shocking story of all happened during my first day in American school. A kid sitting next to me stood up in the middle of class, walked all the way to the […]

Toilet paper at the kitchen table

Here’s a cultural difference that a student of mine noticed: I went to an American university for one year and lived in a dorm with my American roommate. I used to cook Korean food for us and we enjoyed eating together. However, he was shocked and disgusted when I wiped my mouth with toilet paper […]

Lunch with a Canadian friend from a Korean perspective

Consider this story from one of my students: When I met my Canadian friend, I suggested we get lunch together. When she showed up for the lunch date, my Canadian fried had brought her friend along – a total stranger to me. In Korea, this kind of arrangement is between the inviter and the invitee. […]