As the only Western journalist in North Korea, "Good Morning America" anchor Diane Sawyer was allowed a glimpse of the daily lives of students in North Korea. This is what she saw.
North Korean schools are a world away from the unruly individualism of any American school.
The students there snap to attention, shouting out their answers, including the differences between the sounds of British and American English.
If you ask them about their country, they can't say enough. It's the most beautiful country in the world, they say. They are the happiest children anywhere. It is the most wonderful place to live under the leadership of Kim Jong Il.
"We are the happiest children in the world, thanks to Kim Jong Il," one student told me. It is a strange sound for American ears, considering that North Korea is one of the most isolated nations in the world.
The children are proud of their racial purity as well. One girl talked about her wonderful homogeneous country.
So, I ask, "What do you really think of blonde hair?"
Do they like blonde hair? Silence.
One student says no. Another says no. Another says it's not Korean. It's not traditional.
So, I try a couple of words.
"Democracy. What is democracy?" I ask.
Silence. Someone says, "It's the noun for the adjective."
"Where would you like to go in the world?" I ask.
Someone says, "Why travel?" They live in Korea.
We talk about kid things. They tell me when dating, you meet your boyfriends and girlfriends by going to the park, or you meet them someplace by a river.
They tell me that you marry when you grow up and become an adult member of the party in your mid-20s.
And speaking of the party, there are party meetings several times a week in a room downstairs at the school. The exceptional students are photographed each week, standing behind a table where Kim Il Sung once sat.
We visit a history class, where the wonderful battles of Kim Il Sung are being taught.
"What do you know about America?" I ask. "Anyone?"
Back upstairs with the younger students, we show them an American magazine. They tell us they know nothing of American movies or American movie stars.
However, they know nearly every soccer player in the world by name.
"Did you watch the World Cup?" I ask.
"Yes," they answer.
And then, it becomes clear that they have seen some movies -- from a strange place and they are not sure where. The movies' names?
They shout out titles: "Toy Story." "Shrek."
"You know 'The Sound of Music'?" one student asks.
Together, they sing a round of "Do-Re-Mi." But before we leave, one student stands up to sing us a song in English -- a song he has been taught about North Korea and Pyongyang.