“Rusty nails”, all the more scarce

Possibly one of the few caches of Marmite in all of South Korea.  Slavishly taken back from New Zealand on my last trip there, all the more valuable for the shortage of Marmite in New Zealand now. I spread it on toast, and eat it with boiled eggs when we chose to cook them.

On toast it’s the salty-savoury taste which I like. More recently I’ve also spread Philadephia, garlic flavoured cream cheese on on top of the marmite too, as a substitute to using real cheese with marmite.

Marmite has been referred to as tasting like “rusty nails” by advocates and detractors alike.  The detractors are usually Vegemite eaters; the debate for which is better, Marmite or Vegemite? can be read here and here.

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Audio-lingual, U-RAH, U-RAH!

The Audio-lingual method is one of learning by repetition. That is, having the students repeat the target language, many times.  I hear it was invented by the US military, as a way of teaching its’s soldiers the lingo of the country that they would be based in, let alone the language of the people that they might be fighting. In a Korean classroom, (especially that of an Elementary classroom) Audio-lingua is king, and I’m not talking about Elvis. Students here are expected to read, write and recite the target language.  As a student of the Communicative language teaching method, this is just wrong, as in simply just inane. I can cite that if the context is not set properly, the target language that the student would be saying, means nothing. But what I can get from the students, what is worthy of pronunciation, sometimes isn’t worth the effort at all. They’ve been drilled and drilled with a said response to a question, it can be difficult to get them away from the default response and have them think about a real answer.