Korean Language and Cultural Center

[Korean classroom]
Our specially designed classroom, which simulates the inside of a traditional Korean home.

T he Korean Language and Cultural Center (KLCC) was created to facilitate an appreciation of the Korean language and culture and to support the development of Korean foreign language programs outside Korea. The KLCC developed out of the Korean program at New Hope Academy, a school in Maryland (suburban Washington, D.C.), designed and taught by Dr. In Ku Kim-Marshall (formerly a teacher there but now head of the Division of Korean Studies at Georgetown University). From New Hope's founding in 1990, all students in grades K-8 have had the opportunity to benefit from this innovative program which introduces the Korean language and culture.


Revolutionary Approach

[Students learn Korean alphabetical combinations] Dr. Marshall conducted extensive research and developed a revolutionary and distinct instructional approach, using Montessori-based principles. This methodology is uniquely suited for phonetically written languages such as Korean, and uses hands-on materials including educational games and puzzles. In addition, Korean folk tales, songs, literature, and computer programs encourage the students to read, write, and speak Korean, and introduces them to the culture. New Hope acts as a "laboratory school." Through our specially designed Korean classroom, which simulates the inside of a traditional Korean home, Korean culture and traditions can be integrated directly into the classroom. With such innovative materials and teaching methods, New Hope's Korean Studies Department is, to the best of our knowledge, the very finest Korean foreign language program for elementary students anywhere outside Korea today. In an effort to further develop and promote the study of the Korean language in America and make the public more aware of this exceptional program, the KLCC is seeking to form educational partnerships with businesses and groups that share this interest in Korean language and that can assist us in accomplishing our goals.


[Students greet their teacher, Korean-style]

Opening Career Doors

Expanding the scope of Korean foreign language teaching contributes to an environment where non-Korean children can develop an appreciation of the Korean language and culture, thereby breaking down ethnic and racial barriers. In the future, many career doors will be open to Korean-speaking Americans with an appreciation of Korean language and culture. Future generations of business and political leaders with such experience can then foster greater ties between the U.S. and Korea, to the benefit of both nations. We encourage interested persons, businesses, or groups to contact New Hope Academy and the Korean Language and Cultural Center for a visit and tour, and to talk with principal Joy Morrow about how we can work together to share the benefits of this program more broadly.

[Korean Drum]     

Goals

     [Korean Drum]

1. Facilitating the development of Korean foreign language programs in elementary and secondary schools throughout the U.S. Though a large Korean-American community is present in many urban centers in this country, Korean foreign language programs in public and private elementary and secondary schools are sorely lacking. The many benefits of Korean foreign language programs include encouraging greater international and inter-cultural understanding, and allowing Korean-American families to transmit their ancestral language to their children.

[Introduction to the hourglass drum] 2. Teacher training workshops whose purpose is to acquaint teachers with a Montessori-inspired method for teaching Korean as a foreign language through a wide range of newly developed teaching tools. Dr. Kim-Marshall will use her many years of experience to help other teachers learn new teaching techniques and a successful methodology for teaching Korean.

3. The production and distribution of hands-on Korean language materials and games, curriculum and supportive educational materials.

4. The publishing of a periodical featuring the latest research and information on the teaching of Korean and other foreign languages.