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Breck welcomes Korean Guest Teachers

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Breck welcomed 10 guest teaching students today from Seoul National University of Education in South Korea. The teachers will shadow Breck teachers for two weeks, learn classroom techniques and share lessons from Korea.

Since 2011, Breck has partnered with the Global Teacher Education Program at the University of Minnesota's department of international initiatives to bring these upcoming teachers into the classroom.

Sara Thorne, 2nd Grade Instructor, has been a host teacher for a number of years and enjoys watching the connections and growth that happens during the visit.

"It is amazing how the kids just stick to these teachers," says Thorne. "They have a lot questions and love having them as a part of their class."

For second graders, the visit is also well-timed during their study of countries around the world.

"It's really an international connection," Thorne adds. "This time of year in second grade we are already studying the world. When the guest teachers are here, the students get to listen to a different language and hear first-hand about a new culture."

Guest teachers bring with them a lesson normally taught in their own classrooms and Breck students embrace the experience.

"This school in particular is so good about taking care of each individual and including them," says Thorne. "The kids are on their best behavior and love hearing about a new culture and sharing intercultural stories and traditions in class. We also talk about cultures and communities in second grade so hearing how every family has a common thread and that there isn't a right or wrong is great perspective for them."

In addition to a lesson from their home school, guest teachers are asked to learn and lead a lesson their Breck host would normally teach. This mentorship opportunity is what Sara loves most about the visit.

"For me, it's exciting to watch someone's comfort grow after just two weeks," she says. "I love listening to someone else's journey and watching their growth over the two-week visit. It reminds me of why I do what I do. I'm especially humbled because we can take a lot for granted but you quickly learn that the experiences we have here is not always the case for teachers around the world."

The guest teachers will be at Breck for two weeks and will spend their time getting to know other classes in the Lower School as well as touring around the Twin Cities region.