Like most native teachers in these parts, my classroom is coated in teaching materials. The walls and windows are covered with shades that double as huge, fully-illustrated English vocabulary flashcards. IT’S RAINING. BADMINTON. TUMMY. HAMBURGER. Useful? Only kind of. But certainly more so than the…extra-curricular shades printed with pictures of American culture. (I do hope this irritated my Canadian predecessor fiercely.)
Let’s just zoom in on this one for a moment, shall we?
Yes, these three pictures are pasted side by side across the back wall of my classroom. One can only assume they are meant to be viewed as a triptych, each photo informing the others. Which is what makes the inclusion of Weird Lonely Man Lunch photo so bizarre. I have pondered it many an afternoon from my desk, wondering what about it shouted “AMERICA!” to some English classroom interior designer. (This is probably a very real job in South Korea.) If these images are honest Korean ideas about American Culture, I should be able to learn how my people are viewed in this foreign land. (I already know how we sound to everyone.) Certainly this photos must contain clues…
To the slideshow!
Well that’s…..stock photo-y. Where’s the football? The cowboys? Ellis Island? Racial diversity? (That single photo of a black family seems pretty weak. Integration, por favor. ) The trends I spot here are white people, toothy smiling and family dining. Maybe this is supposed to be Canadian….