I started taking Korean language classes in the Korean Cultural Center of the Philippines last year in May. I first took the Basic Korean class and it had shed some light. I did not plan on studying furthermore as my main purpose was only to find out how to pronounce the letters right but figured halfway through the basic class that this would give a wider range of opportunities for me.
The basic class I took ended in August and the next term started the next month. I planned to take a class then but they were sold out too fast for me to be able to get a slot.
In January 2017, I waited for the registration for the 1st term of the year. It was supposed to be open by 10AM on the 13th of January but were pushed back twice because of the heavy traffic the site was getting. I was nervous the whole time but thankfully was able to get the class I wanted to enroll in.
The classes went on from January till April. I took the Tuesday/Thursday morning classes. My college schedule clashed with it, making it harder for me to concentrate during the afternoon classes I had in school. I had to travel from the Korean class to my college for about an hour. It was exhausting. It was most difficult when I had major exams. I take a bus and a jeepney to school from the Korean class building.
Our teacher was Teacher Kang and she had a good sense of humor. She told a lot of jokes although she was somehow shy as well.
My seatmate looked a bit intimidating on the first meeting but she was really nice and I enjoyed talking to her. We were able to talk a lot about the classes and my school and her work. And like any other ate, she gave out advises for my future job and even allowed me to put her as my Character Reference on the resume I made.
The first three classes were alright. We talked about Hangul so I found it boring. The teacher was interesting though. The next few chapters were okay as well. But when we got to further into the book, it became harder to understand, much like getting the information to stick to my brain. There were times I could only laugh at how hard it was to understand. My seatmate was in it, too. Some days were days we all went ‘did you understand?’ ‘no I didn’t’ ‘me, too’; more often than it should.
Throughout the term, we studied about two chapters per meeting and we finished the book by the first week of April. We only had 4 quizzes — two vocabulary quizzes and two reading and writing quizzes. I wished we had more.
Coming from Basic Korean class to Elementary 1 was a lot easier than going straight to Elementary 1. Most of my classmates did not take Basic Korean and so had a more difficult time with reading and writing, as well as keeping up with the lessons. So I do suggest enrolling to Basic Korean first before continuing on to Elementary 1.
The part of the lessons wherein I had a difficult time with was using the -bnida/-seumnida rather than using the -yeyo/-ieyo, which we studied in Basic Korean so I suggest taking time to keep them in mind. Nowadays, I am more used to the former than the latter.
See: Korean Final Exam
I passed the subject, by the way. I plan on taking up Elementary 2 by May.
See: An Award in Korean Class
All in all, I had a good experience in the class. I used to compare my former teacher to my current teacher but I shouldn’t have. I like them both. I am now able to translate a few sentences and can also express myself in Korean. This was fun. I want to learn more and hopefully one day, I would be fluent in the language.