Adventures in rural Thailand

My first six months at a Thai government school

Over a typical week I see four hundred or more students, across Mathayom levels one to six, aged twelve to eighteen. Class sizes range from twenty to thirty students.


On teaching classroom language

Getting students to use simple English all the time

Whenever confronted with students who speak Thai in class, I considered it an opportune moment to teach them the right structures.


Who gets the call when their arms are raised?

Which student gets the teacher's questions and why?

Here are the different groups of students within a typical class. They are quite distinctive and there's not really much of a gray area between them.


Why can't Thais speak English?

Some of these students have had over 2,000 hours of English.

Considering that English has been the international language of tourism and commerce for I don't know how many decades now, and there are I don't know how many thousands of English teachers all over the country, why is the general level of English so poor?


Halloween celebrations

Schools all over Thailand are spooking it up today

Schools even have a legitimate excuse for celebrating Halloween, because it is covered in the Thai MoE's foreign language curriculum - ‘students should be aware of foreign cultures and festivals.'


Making your mark

How to 'get along' with your school

We have discussed the lead up to the job, so now let’s talk a bit about what a teacher can do at work to merit a passing grade or better with his or her students, colleagues and the administration


Why I work in a language centre

Thai high schools? Never again buddy.

The benefits of a good language centre far outweigh those of a high school. The freedom, work conditions and financial package make it the best option for me.


10 things they don’t tell you about teaching in Thailand

The quirky Thai nuances

You may well be the one doing the teaching, but that doesn't mean you won't learn a thing or two along the way.


I don't want to learn!

The biggest teaching hurdle: motivation

Motivation in the classroom, both from the teachers and the students, is essential for learning but it is a tricky balance to strike since the two are so interconnected; if the teacher loses motivation, so do the students and if the students lose motivation, so does the teacher.


Great Expectations

When parents of students are simply too demanding

The demands and expectations that some parents burden their children with are alas often too great. At the moment I’m teaching a kid who hasn’t even turned six, yet his life revolves solely around learning.

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