The 3-4-3 principle and the importance of repetition

Putting students through their paces

1st May 2009

Each lesson has four sides. I lift one side. If by the end of the lesson the students know what is under the remaining three sides, I do not repeat the lesson

Yes, it’s official

Thais can be just as good at English as Khmers, Vietnamese and Laotians but

1st February 2009

English is a compulsory subject in Thailand. But class sizes are normally large. This leaves little or no room for one-to-one dialogues.

Creating classroom culture

Cultivating universal values and striving for excellence

1st September 2007

There are some good teachers out there to get you through these first rough few months of uncertainty. From those who say, "Lay down the law the first week of class. You're not their friend, you're their teacher", to those who offer good introductory first day lessons, there is a lot of good advice out there if one knows where to look.

Making learners

How learners learn

2nd August 2005

Each learner and each learning experience is unique; yet educators can identify patterns in the learning process. Designing effective learning requirements requires a clear understanding of, and attention to, both commonalities and differences in the learners and the learning.

The basics of lesson planning

Something every teacher should know

1st November 2004

The first step in planning a lesson is to have an overview of exactly what will be learned in that lesson (or group of lessons). For example, if you are teaching verb use, you need to determine what you want students to learn.

Before you teach

What every teacher should do and know before opening day

1st September 2004

The first thing every teacher should do before starting a new job is to inspect; inspect beyond the usual school tour that is part of most interviews. Ask to be taken to the classrooms you will use. Look at where you will teach. What do you have? Are there whiteboards or chalkboards? Do you have any type of technology to aid you in teaching? Is there air conditioning?

More on lesson planning

Yes, we know it needs to be done

9th January 2002

How to keep the inspectors happy. With thoughts turning to end of semester inspections a 'cut out, memorise n' shred' Plan B for all you chalkies in Thai schools.

I’ll have a P please Bob

Slowly but surely gameshows are creeping into education

12th December 2001

Making learning more fun by combining games shows & education. A few sugrestions for the future.

Peak performance

Keeping the teacher's pecker up

15th August 2001

An insight into educational viagra (otherwise known as lesson plans) an idiots guide to keeping your boss & students satisfied by your performance under pressure.

Born under a bad sign

Teachers are trained to watch for signs. There are many different signs the

11th April 2001

Teachers' warning signs - ignore them at your peril. Cynical and negative - so no change there.

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About Ajarn.com

Ajarn.com was started as a small hobby website in 1999 by Ian McNamara. It was a simple way for one Bangkok teacher to share his Thailand experiences and pass on advice. The website developed a loyal and enthusiastic following. In 2004, Ian handed over the reins to Phil Williams and 'Bangkok Phil' has run the ajarn website ever since.

Ajarn.com has grown enormously and is now the most popular TEFL site in Thailand - possibly even South East Asia. Although best-known for its vibrant jobs page, Ajarn has a wealth of articles, blogs, features and help and advice. But one principle has always remained at Ajarn's core - to tell things like they are and to do it with a sense of humor. Thailand can be Heaven or Hell for an English teacher. It's always been Ajarn.com's duty to present both sides of the equation. Thanks for stopping by.