Friday, July 30, 2010


Hangul is the name of Korean alphabet.

It all started three years ago when I had to teach Korean students for the first time.

Full House, a Korean comedy drama, was popular in the Philippines that time. There was this part in the drama where the lead actress sang "The Three Bears Song". In Tagalog, it goes something like this:

May tatlong bear sa loob ng isang bahay
(There are three bears in a house.)

Si Papa Bear, si Mama Bear, si Baby Bear
(Father Bear, Mother Bear and Baby Bear)

Si Papa Bear ay malakas

(Father Bear is strong.)

Si Mama Bear ay maganda
(Mother Bear is pretty.)

Si Baby Bear ay napakaliksi
(Baby Bear is lively.)

Tingnan nyo, tingnan nyo
(Look at them. Look at them.)

Ang saya-saya!

(How fun they are!)

Jenny, one of my first Korean students, taught me the Korean version of this song. Since then, I have been enjoying singing it in Korean.

kom sema-ri-ga

han chi-be-yi-so

appa gom, omma gom, ae-gi gom

appa gommun tung-tung-hae

omma gommun nal-shin-hae

ae-gi gommun na bul-gwi-yo-wo

hishuk hishuk cha-rhan-da

CCM is also known as Contemporary Christian Music. It is nice to know that Hanna (also one of my former Korean students) is a Christian. Sometimes, between lessons, we would sing a CCM together -- she singing in Korean while me singing in English. Isn't it wonderful?

As of the moment, I am into Phone English. Meaning, I am not teaching Koreans face-to-face any more. Rather, the class is being done over the phone.

Even though my students are miles apart from me, special connection springs up between me and some of them. These "some" students are the ones who would willingly and gladly share anything about them and their country. They are the ones who would talk to me not only as a teacher but also as a friend.

Little by little I familiarize myself with and got interested in Korean culture. And, I decided to study Hangul as time passed by.

Of course, just like any other, learning a foreign language is never easy. As puts it...

Therefore the secret rules of learning foreign languages is time, persistence and hard work. Motivation is perhaps the best trick to get you going but you will simply need to bite the bullet and keep going once your motivation runs out.

Time, persistence and hard work with a dash of fun and love on what I do would help me make it. Aja!

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