Re: Korean art education methodology?
- Hello Kelly,
My apologies for not responding earlier. I meant to respond
immediately, but my computer was having internet issues, and then I
was on vacation!
I'm currently in Seoul, South Korea teaching art to middle and high
schoolers. The school I teach at is an international school and does
not accept Korean passport holders, so my experience isn't with 100%
Korean students. (I have korean-americans, thai, japanese, canadian,
australian, british, americans, etc) However, I think I can help some
with your questions!
I've noticed that Asian students, in general, are very artistically
talented- in art, music, etc. They are also very, very hard workers.
The Korean-American students typically go to something called hog-won
(my pronunciation, not the spelling) after the school day. This is
basically after-school school. This schooling typically goes from 4 to
8 or 9pm and can be anything- music lessons, art, math, foreign
language. They are very driven to be successful in many different
One thing to note is that this drive can be coming from the parents-
not the students desire to succeed. You might find that the Korean
students will not argue with you, as you are the authority figure.
Korean children are taught not to argue with you- but the parents
might step in and have no issues "discussing" with you! (this might
come as a surprise, because the child didn't come to talk to you first)
Teachers are very highly valued and appreciated here in Korea (I
received gifts this past year from my students at christmas time,
teacher's day, and at the end of the school year). Many Koreans
understand the need to be successful in school, as that determines
where they go after high school. My school had a 100% graduation rate
this past year, with students going to Harvard, John Hopkins,
Princeton, RISD, Parsons... Yes, yes, a little crazy in my mind- but
they have high goals for their (or their child's) future careers.
To my knowledge, they don't have any special methodology in the public
schools. The hogwon teaching emphasizes copying and following very
specific steps to achieve a specific result. I've heard horror
stories (horror to me) of the hogwon teachers ripping a child's
artwork up because it wasn't exactly as directed. However, many of
the high school students I have are very good at copying, but struggle
with the more abstract side of art. They like the detailed
I'd also love to take a summer class to learn more about their style
of teaching, but it's really hard to find a class that teaches in
English! All the good ones are in Korean.
Let me know if you have any other questions!
jessica in south korea.
--- In firstname.lastname@example.org, Kelly Clark <kc_artworks@...> wrote:
> > I was wondering if any of the group members are from Korea
> > or might know anything about the art teaching methodology?
> > I have several students who just came to America from Korea
> > and their art work knocks me off my feet- literally!
> > Is there a certain standardized method that is used? Do
> > they have art class every day, from elementary to high
> > school? Are the teachers particularly strict about using
> > only specific techniques or discipline/amount of time spent
> > on art?
> > I would absolutely love to learn what's done there, or
> > even take a summer art class there, or find out if
> > there's some sort of textbook used??? Whatever it
> > takes, I want to learn!