Looking for news about English clubs or cafes at universities in Korea

I am the programs manager at the English Cafe on campus.  The programs have struggled and thrived and stumbled and are about to go through some big changes.  I’d like to know what people at other universities do to create extra-curricular content, fun content, voluntary content, at their universities.  I will post this link on the Facebook pages of KOTESOL and Gyeongsang branch – KOTESOL and a few other places.  I am desperate for some ideas and suggestions.

First, I should share what we did during the semester just finishing now.

The Cafe was independently run, so far as food, drink, and management were concerned.  Part of the Cafe manager’s contract was that we could run programs in there and she was wonderfully willing to help out.

1) There were daily games hours.  Each day, at an appointed time, students could play a board game with the teacher (or shut the teacher out and play among themselves).  We have English games like Scrabble and Boggle but also chess, Clue, Othello and others, ranging down in difficulty to Uno.  The winner of each day’s game a won 5,000won gift certificate for food and drinks at the Cafe.

2) In previous semesters, we had a daily Simpsons screening.  Students could watch, then answer questions with one student a week winning another 5,000won gift certificate for the Cafe.  Upper management found The Simpsons too low-brow and we were told to switch to documentaries this year and they didn’t go so well.  There were also some technical difficulties – the idea seemed a little boring but each doc should have generated some interest.

3) Once a semester, we ran a Scavenger Hunt.  There were four prizes: 20,000, 15,000, 10,000 and 5,000 won in Cultural gift certificates – these certificates are recognized at bookstores and, I think, movie theaters around the country.

4) Posters: Every two weeks, there was a new series of five posters, all on a theme and each with a question.  At the end of two weeks, the answers were judged and a student would win a 10,000 won Cultural gift certificate.

In previous semesters, teachers could count student attendance at Cafe events as part of their participation grade.  This year, that was no longer allowed and student participation dried up.  Really.  A few students did very well for themselves as there were few others to compete for the prizes.

Next year, the Cafe will run perhaps two events a semester and we may assist an English Club if one forms.  I want to know if your university has an English club, what the students do and what foreign staff are asked to do.  I will post further details at this blog and provide links to the Facebook pages mentioned above and summarize the responses I get.

Hope to hear your details!

 

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3 Responses to “Looking for news about English clubs or cafes at universities in Korea”

  1. ohmystars28 Says:

    It sounds like our program is a bit smaller. It’s run by students (Korean and foreign) who get a stipend for their work. They are kind of like a club in that they have their own structure of student leaders who take on roles such as president, secretary and treasurer. They are primarily responsible for planning and putting on events. I am around to advise and help out where it’s necessary. This past semester was our first with this new system.

    We only serve drip coffee, Americanos and tea. The cost structure is kept as low as possible to attract students; everything is 1,000 won.

    This past semester we had:
    1. Games, food and beer for the school festival in September, open to all students
    2. A Halloween party in October complete with foreign foods, a video presentation about American Halloween and some games. This was also open to all students.
    3. English Movie nights in November (3 in total), open to all students with free popcorn
    4. A Christmas party only for the cafe club student workers in December to thank them for their hard work throughout the semester.
    5. Throughout the semester we also had an English buddy program where Korean students could sign up to practice their English. In the past this was done with a foreign exchange student. This semester we offered openings with native English teachers.

    We also have English books, magazines and games that students can use at any time. Furthermore, this space is sometimes used for evening events when departments request it.

    Let me know if you have any questions!

  2. ANNE DEAN Says:

    Hi Bri: I guess Skype conversations couldn’t get set up because of the time difference.  I would be willing to do thgis. mom

  3. mom Says:

    Scrabble TV short programs

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