GREAT TEACHINGS ~ Korean student speaks about his English teacher


GREAT TEACHINGS, A life story by Yoo Bin Heo 

Hello, everyone. My name is Yoo Bin Heo. I’m a freshman at Kookmin University and my major is Public Administration. I’m really glad to meet all of you in this class. Today, I’d like to talk to you about a very special teacher who meant a lot to me in my life.

 Whenever I think of the teachers I had throughout my school life, I always think of Mr. Yang, my English teacher. I learned a lot from him. Not only knowledge, but I also learned wisdom that is essential to my life.

 I met him when I was a junior in high school. He was my English teacher. He always greeted his students with a sweet smile and a kind word. In every class, he always told us exciting or touching stories.

 I figured that Mr. Yang was a very strong-willed man. His family was really poor when he was young, so his parents couldn’t afford the education fees. However, Mr. Yang, who had a great will to study, worked on a farm delivering cabbages to earn money. He studied and studied to get a scholarship at the college. He said that he studied about 15 hours a day. Finally, he got the scholarship and made it through college. Now, he’s a great teacher and tutor.

 I was a very negative and unwilling person before I met Mr. Yang. Since I was very young, my mother wanted me to try new things and gave me lots of chances to do what I wanted to. However, I never continued or finished anything I began. For instance, I started learning piano when I was in kindergarten. I played until I was in 4th grade in elementary school and then I quit. The reason I quit was because it was getting harder and harder. I was always like this during my school life. When something got harder, I lost interest and gave up.

 However, after I heard Mr. Yang’s story, which was like a drama, I felt I wasn’t trying hard enough. I saw in him the exact example of the proverb, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” Before that, I had always been negative about any challenge. I was afraid of failing and I also had no purpose. However, since Mr. Yang, I feel very different than before. Now I know that if I think I can do something, I can do it.

 I sincerely appreciate Mr. Yang for giving me courage by being a great example. I’m glad I was one of his students. Thanks to him, whenever I feel discouraged by my situation or any obstacle, I don’t give up anymore. He taught us great teachings, both academically and spiritually.

Did you ever have a teacher like Mr. Yang in your life, or were you ever strongly impressed by someone close to you? I hope so!


Editor’s Note: After hearing this story, I asked Yoo Bin Heo if he had told his teacher how he felt. When he said no, I suggested he make sure he did. So often the teacher never knows where his precious wisdom has taken root.

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