Each year, the YISS elementary school sets aside several days for students to immerse themselves in activities and events which celebrate Korean culture and history. Each grade level participates in special activities or field trips designed to give them a greater understanding of Korean culture.
Kindergarten students had a fun time learning all about different kinds of Korean food. Students listened to a reading of Bee-Bim Bop by Linda Sue Park and had the chance to make their own kimbap.
First grade students enjoyed an afternoon of playing traditional Korean games. Ms. You, the ES Korean teacher, taught both parents and students different games, and students had a fun time playing with friends. The first graders also had the opportunity to visit the Lotte World Folk Museum, where they participated in an educational program offered by the museum and made hanji (Korean paper) dolls.
Second grade students visited the National Museum of Korea to learn more about traditional Korean art and explored their artistic abilities by painting their own traditional Korean pottery called baekja (white porcelain). Before the field trip, the students were treated to a lesson given by Professor Leighanne Yuh, an Assistant Professor of Korean History at Korea University, who is also a 2B parent. After their pottery-painting experience, they visited the children’s section of the museum, which was followed by a picnic lunch in the park.
Third grade students will go to Gyeongbokgung Palace and study traditional Korean architecture. Their field trip had to be rescheduled due to rain, but they will be able to witness the changing of the palace guards and then have time to draw a section of the palace architecture that interests them. After sketching, they will explore the history of the palace and look for information to share about its architecture. During the day originally scheduled for the field trip, students had the chance to hear a presentation on Korean architecture and history by Professor Leighanne Yuh.
Fourth grade students participated in a hike at Namhansanseong Provincial Park and Fortress (a UNESCO World Heritage site). Before their trip, they learned about how signal fires were used to communicate by listening to the book The Firekeeper’s Son by Linda Sue Park. Students started their outing by visiting Hwaseong Haenggung Palace and then enjoyed their hike while noticing different defenses of the fortress before returning to school.
Fifth grade students visited and received a historical tour of Changdeokgung Palace (also a UNESCO World Heritage site). Students then walked to Insadong to explore personal interests with their groups and to have lunch. Before the trip, the groups had researched different sites in Insadong and mapped out areas they wanted to explore.
The YISS elementary would like to express their gratitude to the people who helped make Celebrate Korea Days an excellent learning experience. The event would not have been possible without the caring support of parents, community members, and dedicated staff.