One good thing about having a classroom full of Korean kids who tattle tale on each other constantly, is that when one of them calls you fat in Korean they don’t hesitate to tell on that student.
I have to say, I’m not angry about being called fat. It’s a descriptor. The only way it is an insult is that it became one when fatphobia became a thing. What really bothers me is that because even though fatphobia is not just in the U.S. but in other countries too, is that I can’t really step up and explain to the kid that when we say something is fat we are describing it. We are not insulting it. It’s a little difficult to do that with a kid who speaks next to no English and even though he understands enough to get by in the level of class he’s in, he constantly replies to anything I tell him when I am in the front of the class with “Eh? Eh?” Also, at Hagwon schools, we are offered very little one on one time to talk with kids, as usually the kids or us teachers only have 5-10 minutes between class and for teachers, that time is usually spent preparing for our next classes.
Even though changing the view on fat is important to me, I can’t see myself fighting that battle and winning here in Korea. It’s sad, but I think its true.
The best I was able to think up on the spot, after he apologized was: “Ashley-Teacher is Big, but we do not call people “fat” to be mean.”
I knew I would be faced with fatphobia here in Korea, but I did not think of the possibility that my first experience would be in my classroom with the kids I teach.
And in other news, Ashley forgot that she is also dumped into a place that doesn’t respect fat bodies.
Reblogged from my Expat blog.