Goodbye Korea Series | Sandra, my favorite student

Often people ask me what I will the most about Korea and without a doubt it's going to be my students. They were the best part about my whole experience here. I will never forget their smiling and happy faces. Korean kids really are unlike any kids I've ever met. I try not to play favorites, but it was kind of inevitable that I would have one. It's hard to choose a favorite, but one student really stands out in my mind. Her name is Sandra and she is one of the coolest kids I know. She's really amazing and I'm going to miss her a lot.

The balloon says, "I'll remember you always Noel. Mark too!"
Sandra's beautiful mom!

Sandra has been coming to the library for about two years, the same as me. She's my favorite because she is the most talkative of my students. She speaks English really well and her comprehension level is ridiculous. She's only in fifth grade, but I've never had to use Korean with her. I thought she must've lived in a western country because she almost has no accent, but she hasn't. She's just incredible!

The reason why Sandra is my favorite is because she is kind, helpful and funny. There is so much to love about her. In class, she often translates for me because the other kids don't speak English as well as her. She's always helping other students whether it's pronunciation when they read out loud or with worksheets that they don't understand. She's never cocky about her English ability and tries to help those around her. To me, that's simply amazing. Another thing that I love about her, is that she really knows me and the things I like! We met the other day and she painted her nails to look like pandas. She knew I was going to freak out, so she was prepared. She even brought her nail polish so she could paint my nails like pandas!

We spent our last afternoon together with her mom at a cafe near the library. I was worried that I wouldn't be able to see her, but they made it! She painted my nails, we talked about school, and ate patbingsu. It was a great afternoon and I was really sad to say goodbye. I will always remember this sweet and beautiful girl!