Steve Catchpole

Steve Catchpole

Peter and Nadine

When teaching careers end before they've even started.


Although teaching in Thailand can sound like one big adventure, I'm convinced that some people are not really built to leave home. Teaching in Thailand is just not for them. It's too much of a leap into the unknown.

Read more

John V

John V

The Rise and Fall of the Pattaya Empire

How times have changed for Thailand's favourite seaside resort


My dear Pattaya; I don’t know whether to feel sympathy for you, or applaud your growing older gracefully, just like ourselves.

Read more

Mark Brown

Mark Brown

An undeserved promotion

Foreign teachers are powerless to stop problem students advancing


Last year in my P1 class I encountered a student named Oat (not his real name). Within minutes of meeting this child it was apparent that he had some sort of behavioral problem. He was extremely active, running from room to room, disrupting classes throughout the whole school. The other teachers tried to control him but it was close to impossible.

Read more

Steve Schertzer

Steve Schertzer

Children of the March

The nightmare that is American public education.


I am grateful that I am now living in Thailand and can watch the downfall and eventual collapse of Western Civilization from half a world away.

Read more

Phil Roeland

Phil Roeland

Ways to improve Thai education

This should be the first government priority


So how can Thailand improve its education? In a nutshell: train the trainers, put fewer students together, motivate them better, hire the right foreign educators to help this bring about, and involve parents more.

Read more

Matthew Pape

Matthew Pape

The worst type of foreigner

Why bash other people's lifestyles and situations?


I live in a closet with no air-con and a fan. I live off of a diet of air, water and noodles. Sure, I can't afford to travel, save for retirement, get my own place and I haven't seen my family for years because I can't afford a ticket to go home and visit them, but I am living the Thai lifestyle man!

Read more

Maya Dattani

Maya Dattani

Work ethic vs life ethic

Is it possible to find the perfect balance?


It's just interesting to note that it is the relaxed attitude that keeps the East "developing" while it's our go-go attitude that makes us "prosperous". The same attitude that hinders them in business allows them to be happily content with life, whereas it's our work ethic that erodes at our physical and emotional well being.

Read more

James Humphries

James Humphries

Be honest with yourself

Every teacher has made mistakes - including you!


I've read many teaching blogs down the years and I generally enjoy hearing about other people's experiences. However there is one thing I'd like to see more of - honesty

Read more

Sion Binalon

Sion Binalon

Music and language acquisition

How music benefits the language learner


Learning language through music helps students' verbatim memory, improves pronunciation, speaks better, and promotes positive atmosphere in learning.

Read more

Adam Crittenden

Adam Crittenden

The benefits of working in an after-school language centre

Extra cash and more teaching experience for starters!


Teaching at an after-school has been a worthwhile experience. If you are willing to build your endurance and self-discipline then you will gain the rewards of more experience and some extra cash to boot.

Read more

Joko MacKenna

Joko MacKenna

Monsoon!

Surviving Myanmar's rainy season


William Putnam

William Putnam

The value of a bohemian life

Free time v the pursuit of extra income?


As teachers in Thailand, we all try to maximize our earnings by taking on extra classes during our evenings and weekends. However, if we have no dependents or financial worries at home, is this really the best way to go about living in a laid-back place like Thailand?

Read more

Megan Swanick

Megan Swanick

Are Thai teachers actually helpful?

Or is the foreign teacher better off without them in the classroom?


Before beginning my experience as a TESOL teacher in Thailand, way back when I was a newbie farang taking my TESOL course on Phuket, I was repeatedly assured by indifferent agencies and instructors not to worry because you will always share classrooms with Thai teachers that are there to help you.

Read more

Benito Vacio

Benito Vacio

Back in the groove

How do Filipino teachers feel on returning home from teaching abroad?


Last month I shared with you my findings about the numerous reasons why many Filipino English teachers in Thailand have started returning to their country, the Philippines. This time, let us see what our Filipino friends have to say after staying in Thailand for 5-10 years and for settling back in their motherland.

Read more

Peter Clarke

Peter Clarke

Interesting Thailand stuff - October 2016

A selection of hand-picked Thailand blogs and articles


Kylie Millar

Kylie Millar

Five myths about being a TEFL teacher

I'm sick of the moaners.....I really am!


I am sick and fed up of people coming out to Thailand with stupid misconceptions and then moaning about how awful it is to live in Thailand. Shut up and go home then!

Read more

Curt Crossley

Curt Crossley

The winning cover letter

And how to write a losing cover letter of course


The letter itself should be relatively short and to the point. I would suggest no more than 3-5 paragraphs. The first paragraph notes your interest in the specific school and specific job listed, and reinforces that your qualifications meet the qualifications sought by the employer.

Read more

Paul Muir

Paul Muir

Thai cuisine and The Royal Court

Some fascinating historical aspects of Thai food


The contribution of the royal court to the cooking of Thai food is perhaps more significant than in any other nation.

Read more

Jessica Watson

Jessica Watson

Dealing with the troublemakers

Discipline: tips on control in the classroom


Troublemakers. We have all seen them do their thing, causing mayhem and disorder in the classroom; perhaps you were even one yourself at some point during your time as a student. Troublemakers are the bane of every teacher's existence and they make our job go from difficult to pounding headache and hair-tearing proportions.

Read more

Mike Curl

Mike Curl

Simply Thai food

My take on the highs and lows of Thai cuisine


My relationship with Thai food is quite complicated. My initial exposure to the cuisine occurred when I was quite young. In fact, I was so young that I didn't even know that it was Thai food. Hell, I only new Thailand from the tags on clothing.

Read more

Nathan Murphy

Nathan Murphy

Is the drought over?

My experiences with water shortages in Thailand


I have lived with drought restrictions in Australia, but nothing like this. The dam at the back of the town has been bone dry, with any rain simply falling down the cracks.

Read more

David Walters

David Walters

Should teachers plan?

Is lesson planning an absolute must?


Planning comes in all shapes and sizes and there are a myriad of planning templates online for every type of lesson. No matter what type of school you work in, you are sure to be writing lesson plans of some kind, but just how useful are they?

Read more

John Wolcott

John Wolcott

Why studying photography has helped me become a better teacher

Recompose, refocus and reshoot


Like learning photography, becoming a better teacher is more about learning from mistakes than it is delivering perfect lessons every single time.

Read more

Julia Knight

Julia Knight

Would the NHS be so concerned?

Is Thai healthcare about care or cash?


I am pregnant with my second child and despite all the protests about how much I hated it the first time around and 'would never ever, not ever do it again' have found myself in the club.

Read more

Cassie Lahmann

Cassie Lahmann

Thailand’s weirdest of the weirds

Some of the quirkier aspects of Thai culture


I want to be as respectful as possible when I discuss Thailand's quirks. I don't think I could have picked a better country to live in without having ever visited or knowing much about the culture.

Read more

Lidya Belete

Lidya Belete

How to survive in Pattaya if you're not a sex tourist (or if you're a woman)

You can escape the unsavoury aspects if you truly want to


I came to Pattaya because of the ocean. I saw pictures of what looked like paradise, and thought I could live a life of quiet contemplation.

Read more

Neil McDonough

Neil McDonough

Are we living in groundhog day?

And can you take advantage of it?


If the 20th century belonged to Europe and the USA, then perhaps the 21st century can belong to SE Asia and cities like Bangkok, can perform as well as cities like London, Paris and Frankfurt.

Read more

Colleen Setchell

Colleen Setchell

Paws for thought

Sometimes Thailand is no place for the animal lover


I'm constantly amazed by how many stray dogs and cats I see on the streets around Koh Samui. Some are lucky enough to look half decent, others aren't that lucky. For those of you who don't know how things work in Thailand when it comes to strays, here's the run down.

Read more

Rachel Diamond

Rachel Diamond

Finding a job in Thailand - the basics

From one newbie to another


If you're considering coming to Thailand on your own to find work as an English teacher, I promise you can do it.

Read more

Zach Laan

Zach Laan

Grayscale

Potentially contentious issues in the LOS


"All in the game" is a great statement for Thailand. Omar, Avon, Stringer and the rest of the gang nailed it. Thailand is controlled by a few at the expense of the majority. The majority respond by doing what they can. It applies to all facets of daily life. For foreigners living in Thailand we're somewhere on the border of it all.

Read more

Bob Sohigian

Bob Sohigian

The simple life of Sapa

Exploring Northwest Vietnam


From the moment you catch your first glimpse, your eyes become prisoners to the panorama. With its close proximity to China and the well renowned Himalayas, the main area in Sapa Town allows for the hilly, Hoang Lien Son Mountain Range to reveal itself.

Read more

Karisa Blake

Karisa Blake

Welcome to Bang Sue

Life on the outskirts of Bangkok


“You live where??” I usually receive looks of concern from my students when I tell them that I live in the neighborhood of Bang Sue, about an hour away from our school. From my friends, I receive childish giggles. Yes, I get it. Ha Ha. Many people wonder why I would live so far away from my job and my friends.

Read more

Marguerite Anne Tremel

Marguerite Anne Tremel

When life gives you mangoes

Go and make mango-flavored ice cream


A couple of weeks ago, I was walking down the street and a mango fell out of the sky right at my feet, a gift from the mango go-go gods.

Read more

Carl Heaton

Carl Heaton

Running a niche website

Part four of ten ways to supplement your teaching income


Are you passionate about something? Do you have a lot to say on a certain subject? Are you an amazing cook or fitness guru? Running your own niche website is a great way of expressing your opinion and making money.

Read more

John Quinn

John Quinn

A stroll around Chiang Mai's Eastern District

A fun-filled glimpse into the past on every street corner


I was sitting in a small garden coffee shop just behind my school sipping a cooling iced-coffee yesterday afternoon, when I started to think about the area surrounding me. Its history is the history of foreigners in Chiang Mai, as this area is where the first foreigners settled, lived and worked in the late nineteenth century.

Read more

Scott Hipsher

Scott Hipsher

Are degrees required to teach?

Opinion continues to be divided


Three things which seem unavoidable are death, taxes and debates on ajarn.com about the requirement for teachers of having a degree. Those without degrees generally argue a degree is not necessary, while those with degrees will normally make the case a degree should be required.

Read more

Elizabeth Frantz Larson

Elizabeth Frantz Larson

Back to civilisation?

Have I really been away for two and a half years?


I need a little intermission from Asia, from being abroad, from the frustrations. It's time to remember why I moved away again, time to take a step back and get out of the bizarre madness that has become my life.

Read more

Auntie Nim

Auntie Nim

Old things from the village

Keeping the memories of those olden, golden days alive


My foreign friends and students who know my life habits ask me why I love old things; old houses, old wood furniture, and even pieces of an old rice mill that I keep underneath my old wooden house in Bangkok. It seems strange, doesn't it?

Read more

Sascha

Sascha

Getting serious

Switching from a rural vocational college to a Bangkok university


So. Finally. After three terms it was time to say goodbye to Udon Thani, the vocational college and the Isaan region and to say hello to Bangkok and a private university.

Read more

Geoff Richards

Geoff Richards

Small talk with big results

The art of teaching English forwards


"Hi, how are you?" "I'm fine thank you, and you?" "I'm fine thank you." Now, where have we all seen and heard this longwinded, nigh on nonsensical way of communicating before?

Read more

Lee Lepper

Lee Lepper

Are you a crappy teacher?

Time to take the self-evaluation test


If you have evaluated yourself honestly and you have come to a conclusion that you are in fact a crappy teacher, what can you do about it? Since most of these things actually have to do with personal motivation, probably not a lot.

Read more

Steve Crawford

Steve Crawford

The system is in one big mess

Things that seemed like a good idea at the time


Abel Cadias

Abel Cadias

Good morning campers

Themes and ideas for your English camp


Facilitating English camps has always been challenging and fun for me but ten years ago I had absolutely no idea how a camp worked or what it was tring to achieve.

Read more

Ajarn Finance

Ajarn Finance

Time to invest outside the box?

Some interesting ideas for your investment capital


Although generally positive, 2010 has seen considerable volatility in world financial markets that caused investment jitters on occasion and the forecast for 2011includes more of the same.

Read more

Tim Cornwall

Tim Cornwall

Thinking sustainability

Making students aware of the world around them


The core aim of the Compass Education program is to help students examine and come to understand key questions and concepts centred around who we are; where we are in place and time; how we express ourselves; how the world works; how we organize ourselves; and finally how we can go about sharing the planet.

Read more

Matt Smith

Matt Smith

The perfect storm

One needs to check the weather before one heads out on an adventure


There was one final story I wanted to relate here, because it was my greatest adventure in Thailand. Or was at least my most memorable experience, at any rate, because it was the closest I have ever come to kicking the bucket.

Read more

John Wilson

John Wilson

Playing to the gallery

Successful class-management and learner success is dependant on having fun


We are all familiar with the fact that every class has its own special chemistry. For obscure reasons some classes are friendly, others not; some bright and perky, others lackluster and heavy going.

Read more

Ben Finklestein

Ben Finklestein

Sukhumwit nights

Where to find the best Bangkok streetfood


Sukhumvit Soi 38 is easily accessible via Thong Lor BTS. Most stalls are open Tuesday-Sunday 6PM-2AM.

Read more

Ken May

Ken May

Lost Stories

Experiences with one of Thailand’s most progressive educators


He single-handedly broke every stereotype of the Ministry of Education. He was outgoing, inquisitive, articulate, globally aware, and willing to debate ideas about education. I resolved to formally interview this man one day and tell his story.

Read more

William Blake

William Blake

The taking of responsibility 1-2-3

An alternative look at Thai culture


Much has been written about the Thai culture, some of it well researched and gleaned from many years of experience. This article is unashamedly neither.

Read more

Jason Alavi

Jason Alavi

And it's goodnight from me

Feathers have most certainly been ruffled


Steve Tainton

Steve Tainton

The long weekend

All work and no play make Matt a real salaryman


My submission omissions of late have been due to my recent career change. As I no longer work in the teaching industry, I feel I can better serve this space with short sketches of my life in Japan than with longer submissions on broader topics. So here goes

Read more

Tazza's Thailand Tales

Tazza's Thailand Tales

The Thai culture course

How to scam, exploit and demoralise foreign teachers


Day one of the course began with the typical smiles and greetings. The venue laid on a nice little breakfast pack for each of us and well wishers waited at the doors to greet us with: "Hello, thank you for coming!". (Like we had a f***ing choice!)

Read more

Greg Hill

Greg Hill

Thai culture course experiences

How to scam, exploit and demoralise foreign teachers


Here's a complete breakdown of my time spent on the Thai cultural course. Actually I've decided that it was nothing but a teacher's council money spinner. It had little to do with improving a teacher's performance in the classroom and just when I thought things couldn't get any worse, the foreign participants were given an impromtu dance class.

Read more

Matthew Noble

Matthew Noble

Those new year resolutions

Some resolutions related to teacher and others not.


The first one is to relax more and try to really enjoy teaching in this land of sanook. I knew about sanook before I came here to work- it was partly the great sense of fun in Thai culture that attracted me to it- I just didn’t know that for a Thai person it quite properly should infuse just about everything worth doing.

Read more

Taiwan Troll

Taiwan Troll

Culture shock

Adjusting to a new life abroad


The transition to life in a new country means adjusting to a foreign culture. But what is culture? What is it that we are confronted with? Culture is a set of shared, accepted behavior patterns, values, assumptions and common experiences. It defines the social structure, the expectations and the norms of communication for a society.

Read more

Nick Tarver

Nick Tarver

The pee, the nong and the wai

Aspects of Thai culture


Although ajarn.com has never shirked from handing out some just criticism on Thai education and culture I felt it was only fair to balance worthy criticism with worthy praise.

Read more

Ajarn Dynamo

Ajarn Dynamo

Making learners

How learners learn


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.

Read more

Brian Hill

Brian Hill

Intelligence

Intelligence is not fixed at birth.


Over the last 25 years we have more than doubled our understanding of how the brain works. All the new research is good news for humans, but it severely dents many long held beliefs.

Read more

Seth Leighton

Seth Leighton

Transitions in Thailand

The grass isn't always greener on the other side


Bored with teaching? Sure there is a better way to make a baht in Thailand besides the TEFL game? Well, I just finished a six-month stint working in the marketing department of a large Thai furniture company.

Read more

Miss Education

Miss Education

The school song

Homage to a cheerful tune


Covering classes was not a stretch, it allowed me to walk over to the ‘teen’ division of the campus. Being the other farang female the ‘high school’ kids always were attentive when either of us had to fill in.

Read more

Charles Green

Charles Green

The teacher mindset

English teachers are all business owners


In Thailand, I have found that people quickly get labeled and categorized as either good or bad, helpful or unhelpful, good teachers or bad teachers, etc. Then once you are labeled it is a long and difficult process of changing your projected image.

Read more

Rob Newman

Rob Newman

Teacher contracts

Are they binding, and if so, how?


Let’s face it, when a teacher realizes they made a mistake by taking the job, or have suddenly found another school that will pay them more money, they will try to get out of the contract. Many just up and leave with no word or thought for the mess they are leaving behind.

Read more

Teachers Tales

Teachers Tales

February 2003

A bulging toast-rack full of buttered TEFL slices


Featuring this month what makes a good teacher great, the greatest TEFL teacher story ever told and let's hear it for the dreaded visa run

Read more

Ian McNamara

Ian McNamara

Divine right

Can anyone realistically teach English?


Some people believe that every native English speaker is born with the ability to teach English. Unfortunately a high proportion of people with that belief appear to want to be teachers.

Read more


View active blogs

Featured Jobs

NES English Teacher

฿45,000+ / month

Bangkok


Teachers for Immediate or May 2019 Start

฿35,000+ / month

Thailand


Digital TEFL Teacher

฿650+ / hour

Online


Experienced NES Teachers

฿100,000+ / month

United Arab Emirates


Weerawong, Chinnavat & Partners Ltd.

฿60,000+ / month

Bangkok


English Teachers for Adults/Kids

฿105,000+ / month

China


Featured Teachers

  • Alecia


    South African, 25 years old. Currently living in South Africa

  • Ronald


    Irish, 51 years old. Currently living in Thailand

  • Robin


    Nepalese, 22 years old. Currently living in Thailand

  • Zeeshan


    Pakistani, 45 years old. Currently living in Pakistan

  • Matthew


    British, 26 years old. Currently living in South Korea

  • Khrystyna


    Ukrainian, 21 years old. Currently living in Thailand

The Hot Spot


Teacher mistakes

Teacher mistakes

What are the most common mistakes that teachers make when they are about to embark on a teaching career in Thailand? We've got them all covered.


Will I find work in Thailand?

Will I find work in Thailand?

It's one of the most common questions we get e-mailed to us. So find out exactly where you stand.


Can you hear me OK?

Can you hear me OK?

In today's modern world, the on-line interview is becoming more and more popular. How do you prepare for it?


Contributions welcome

Contributions welcome

If you like visiting ajarn.com and reading the content, why not get involved yourself and keep us up to date?


The dreaded demo

The dreaded demo

Many schools ask for demo lessons before they hire. What should you the teacher be aware of?


Need Thailand insurance?

Need Thailand insurance?

Have a question about health or travel insurance in Thailand? Walter van der Wal from Pacific Prime is Ajarn's resident expert.


Renting an apartment?

Renting an apartment?

Before you go pounding the streets, check out our guide and know what to look out for.