Eric McGuire Tutor Interview
- Q. Hi Eric! Let’s start off with a short self-introduction. Please introduce yourself briefly to the Cafetalk community!
A. Hi there! My name is Eric and I’m an English teacher living in Suwon, South Korea. Originally, I’m from Michigan, but my travels have taken me all over the world. I was first introduced to Cafetalk by a Korean friend in college, and now I’m hooked. I love online tutoring. I have made lots of great friends among my students, and had loads of unforgettable conversations.
- Q. While you were born and raised in the US you are currently living in South Korea. Can you tell us a bit about your life in both countries?
A. While I was in the US I was getting my Bachelors degree and working. Life was all about my job and my studies. I was comfortable and happy, but I was really eager to live in another country and experience a new culture. South Korea has been the adventure I needed! Everything, down to the smallest detail, is new and different. Also, learning to read and speak Korean has been incredibly fun and challenging.
- Q. What are you usually up to when you’re not teaching on Cafetalk? What are your hobbies and interests?
A. I’m a very social guy, so I can usual be found at a coffee shop chatting with a friend. Otherwise, I’m practicing guitar, reading, or taking a trip to the movie theater. I’m a big movie buff!
- Q. Can you tell us a bit about the atmosphere in your lessons? What can a student imagine a lesson with you to be like?
A. A lesson with me is fun and casual. Lessons usually start with a nice conversation to either catchup, or get to know each other. After that, I do my best to understand what my student’s want and need, and come up with material that I think will be most. I have almost as many lesson plans as I have students.
- Q. Your most popular lessons are your Free Talk lessons. What makes a free conversation with you special, and what can students expect to learn?
A. Yes! That’s true. Free talks are also one of my favorite lessons. My students get really good at talking about themselves. I’m naturally very curious about them, and interested in their lives. I want to hear their stories! I’m also very patient when we hit a language barrier. I have a lot of fun with my students working together to come up with phrases that best express the things they want to say. For me, self-expression is an art form, and I can’t get enough it. Generally, if my student is taking my lesson for the first time, they can expect to meet a stranger, and leave with a friend.
- Q. It seems like you speak a little bit of Spanish - have you ever considered studying Korean or Japanese? What is your experience with learning new languages?
A. My mother is South American, so I spent a lot of time in Chile. I speak conversational Spanish. I’m currently studying Korean, and I hope that by 2018 I’ll be conversational. Japanese might be next on my list!
- Q. Finally, would you like to leave a message for your current and future students?
A. My message to my students: don’t be afraid to make mistakes! Learning a language is messy, but when we let go of our need to be perfect, it becomes really fun. I look forward to meeting future students, and seeing all my old students again! Until then, keep growing, keep learning!