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What do you think about South Korean education?

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Jisung Hwang

New Contributor
Feb 23, 2018
2
2
21
Seoul, South Korea
*I'm not good at english*
Life of middle school students
07:00 wake up
08:00 go to school
09:10~09:55 take a class
09:55~10:05 break time
10:05~10:50 take a class
10:50~11:00 break time
...
...
...
...
...
11:55~12:40 take a class
12:40~13:30 lunch time
13:30~14:15 take a class
14:15~14:25 break time
14:25~15:10 take a class
15:10~15:20 break time
15:20~16:05 take a class
16:05~16:20 End day meeting
16:20~16:40 cleaning time
16:40~17:00 go to Institute(korean, math, history, social study, english, science)
17:00~23:00 or 22:00 studying
23:00 or 24:00 arrive at home
23:00 or 24:00 ~ 01:00 homework
01:00~07:00 sleep
07:00 wake up

(loop)


what do you think about this system?
 
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AgainstAllOdds

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I think sleep is one of the top factors for kindergarten through high school performance.

At 6 hours of sleep per day, I don't seen how any of these kids are functioning or growing effectively.

I slept 8-10 hours in grade school and had amazing grades. High school I slept 5-8 hours and my grades declined. College I slept 7-9 hours and my grades were great again.

On top of that, there doesn't seem much room in that list for kids to be kids. Playing sports, messing about, etc.

The schedule in my opinion is only optimal if the goal is to break down a kid's spirit and push him into a robot life.
 

ZF Lee

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I think sleep is one of the top factors for kindergarten through high school performance.

At 6 hours of sleep per day, I don't seen how any of these kids are functioning or growing effectively.

I slept 8-10 hours in grade school and had amazing grades. High school I slept 5-8 hours and my grades declined. College I slept 7-9 hours and my grades were great again.

On top of that, there doesn't seem much room in that list for kids to be kids. Playing sports, messing about, etc.

The schedule in my opinion is only optimal if the goal is to break down a kid's spirit and push him into a robot life.
Whatever happened to learning new marketable skills on the side?

After graduation, many students are going to come out with the same education background.

What will be there to make you different from the rest of them?

It is like brand vs commodity.
 

DannyD

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It is too much

I can comment on this as a Korean-American who has lived in both Korea and America

It is largely unnecessary. Koreans just send their kids to afterschool academies (English, math, etc.) just because everyone else is doing it (Korean people don't think for themselves - I guess you can say that about any group of people but Koreans probably moreso than others)

From what I know, there is no reason for it because it's not like you will fall behind in school if you don't go to the afterschool programs

--

After having lived in America, Europe, Asia, and now Latin America

I can say that the ideal society would probably be something between American/East Asian hard work and Latin American/European chill

Americans/East Asians are largely miserable people while Latin American/Europeans are generally happy; however, the caveat being the latter don't really work that much and as such, their societies etc can be dysfunctional (from an American/East Asian perspective)

There is a clear difference between older Korean people (senior citizens) and younger generations. The former are generally happier people with closer family ties, sense of nation/camaraderie, etc. while the latter are mostly miserable corporate drones

I am in Colombia right now. The thing that will stick with me the most is how happy the people are. I believe this is because they have very close relationships with each other (e.g. family and friends) and the vast majority don't give a shit about the rat race - just working to survive (work to live vs. live to work)
 
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Invictus

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This reminds me of a well-studied English writer. John Stuart Mills.

His father was a member of the extremely well-educated upper class. This man believed that genius was not hereditary. That you could teach a child to be a genius.

So, he used his son as proof. He hired the best tutors and had his son attend lessons constantly. The boy was, more or less, forbidden from playing with children his own age. At age three, he could read Greek. By age eight, he was able to read, and understand, much of classical literature (in the original languages). To entertain guests, he would recite huge portions of these texts.

His son, by how we (especially schools) would measure, was exceptionally intelligent.

At age 20, Mills suffered a mental breakdown.

You can't cram 24/7 work and learning into someone forever. If there isn't a way to vent, pressures keeps building.
 

Ninjakid

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Pros: I noticed kids in my school who came from South Korea usually excelled, definitely on average did far better than the kids born and raised in Canada. Not just academically, the Korean kids would be involved in lots of extracurricular activities, and spent more time pursuing their goals. I think the Canadian education system teaches many to slack and do the bare minimum required of you, whereas the Korean education system teaches you to strive for excellence.

Cons: 6 hours or less of sleep for a growing body? That's waaay to little to be healthy. South Korea is contantly competing with Japan for the highest suicide rate in the world; depression is worse there than almost anywhere else, and when you learn what their school life is like at such a young age it all makes sense. Every person I know who's gone through the South Korean school system says how ridiculously strenuous it is.

While I admire the work ethic instilled in kids from a young age in South Korea, I think there needs to be a balance. Perhaps you can teach kids to pursue their own goals with relentless drive rather than work incredibly hard at something which you're taught by society to care about?

안녕하세요, 환영합니다!
 

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The Korean government used to think that the system would produce an advantage for Korea. However, they have been following the system for multiple decades now and it hasn't produced anywhere near the results they thought it would produce.
 
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Ninjakid

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The Korean government used to think that the system would produce an advantage for Korea. However, they have been following the system for multiple decades now and it hasn't produced anywhere near the results they thought it would produce.
They have progressed remarkably over the past fifty years though. Living standards is one of the best in the world. That's what the government was aiming for.
 

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Standard of living is a relative term. They have an executive Exchange program where they send senior level executives from South Korea to the United States on an exchange program for a few years. Many if not most of them end up quitting and not going back to Korea. They have a real problem with the families that they bring along with them because the familes/wives absolutely will not go back to living in a tenement building/ high rise. When they see how Western women function in society it is very difficult for them to go back into the cultural norms and fit back into South Korean Society.

There's really no comparison between the standard of living in South Korea to the United States.

The objective of the educational program was to create a generation that would lead in business on a global basis. Meanwhile, they developed proficiency in the 1990s in electronics due to innovation, not due to this educational program that they thought was going to be the thing that would make them into a world superpower.

However, now you have a generation that has grown up not knowing any differently. The slow lane worker in Korea carries that same schedule into their business life.

I have a significant deal of respect for their culture, their people, and their work ethic. I have several long-term business relationships in South Korea. However, their educational puruits have not produced the desired result.
 

Ninjakid

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Standard of living is a relative term. They have an executive Exchange program where they send senior level executives from South Korea to the United States on an exchange program for a few years. Many if not most of them end up quitting and not going back to Korea. They have a real problem with the families that they bring along with them because the familes/wives absolutely will not go back to living in a tenement building/ high rise. When they see how Western women function in society it is very difficult for them to go back into the cultural norms and fit back into South Korean Society.

There's really no comparison between the standard of living in South Korea to the United States.

The objective of the educational program was to create a generation that would lead in business on a global basis. Meanwhile, they developed proficiency in the 1990s in electronics due to innovation, not due to this educational program that they thought was going to be the thing that would make them into a world superpower.

However, now you have a generation that has grown up not knowing any differently. The slow lane worker in Korea carries that same schedule into their business life.

I have a significant deal of respect for their culture, their people, and their work ethic. I have several long-term business relationships in South Korea. However, their educational puruits have not produced the desired result.
It definitely would be nice to see a stronger culture of entrepreneurship and creativity in South Korea, rather than training to become a cog in the machine of one of five mega-corporations.

I think all education needs to be scratched and revamped. We'll have robots pretty soon, we need people to be like people.
 
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