Korean High School Life – Study, Suicide and Beauty

Well, this was something I didn’t really garner too much interest in until a friend of mine sent me a video via Facebook. What a title, eh?

Anyway, I clicked on play and began watching the 18 minute documentary of a teenager’s life in Korea. At first, some stuff surprised me a little bit due to the fact that I live in the States and as more information was thrown at me, it just made me wonder many things.

The video explains many things in which Korean high school students focus on. The most important one: studying. In the video and information I discovered while researching, I realized that Korean students take sixteen hours off their daily life to study. I thought I spent long times studying. They take this time out of their daily life to study in order to pass exams, and passing exams means getting to a good school, and getting to a good school means getting a good career, and getting to a good career means obtaining a good life. Interesting, right? But the stress of studying and leaving out their social life also affects them, badly. One major problem being … suicide. Suicide has become highly common among Korean high school students, and the major cause being school. Daily life schedule as a Korean teenager attending boarding school:

6:30 – Get up and exercise. Then, eat breakfast. After a few minutes, take a shower or wash the face. Then clean the room and take roll call.

7:50 – School as begun. Free study time at the yaja or study room.

9:20 – Classes begin. Attend first of four classes (All 90 mins. each)

1:10 – Lunch.

1:45 – Finish the two other classes for the day.

4:00 – Clean the school with their team.

4:20 – Finish last class.

6:00 – Dinner.

7:00 – Roll call. Study some more at the yaja. Studying could go till 11pm with breaks in between. It could also last till 1 or 2 am if there is an exam.

Next on my list is beauty. When I first got into Kpop, in the next few months I found out how important beauty is to Koreans. Because of the high importance of beauty in South Korea, many people use plastic surgery. Traditional looking Korean girls, today, aren’t considered as “beautiful” to the Korean public eye. Beauty consist of: being tall, pale and having big eyes. Due to this fact, many Korean females usually use American female celebrities as their choice on being ‘perfect.’ A friend of mine had told me she had visited South Korea for a few days and while she walked down the streets, people looked at her in awe. My friend had the beautiful long, blonde hair. She was also tall, perfect nose, perfect figure and of course, she had the perfect eyes: big and wide. If females usually don’t have any of these aspect, they’re considered as ugly and dateless.

Check out this documentary. Hope you enjoyed my little introduction.

[vimeo vimeo.com/26833191]

Credits: Kelley Katzenmeyer @ Vimeo.com and fiu.edu.

Link to take the pledge, click here. Enjoy…


5 thoughts on “Korean High School Life – Study, Suicide and Beauty

  1. it’s really Touching n sad
    I was thinking that they had a perfect life n all what they care about love n money , laugh
    not in that way
    I’m really in love with small eyes Although that main is big
    really thanks for clarify this Image n for hard work

    n sorry for my bad english

  2. Thanks for your blog, this video is impressive and I’m excited to continue to hear from both you and Kelly about Korean High Schoolers. Do you know, what boarding school was this filmed at?

  3. i have read so many article that saying how stressful life leaving in korea … my friend has a korean boyfriend which stated that its really good leaving in korea but indeed you need to work work work big time ..to earn for leaving… and study hard to satisfy the public …

    you will noticed how stress is Korean is..

    KOREAN entertainment or kpop/kdrama/kvariety is so BIG in korea.
    entertainment is at need … for them…
    compared to other country korean ent. is a serious business .. bcuz of its HIGH DEMAND to the public.

    i love you post . THANK YOU…. very well made…^^

  4. Pingback: Beautiful highschoolers | Janetbosshart

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