Some solutions to the challenges of teaching in Thailand

Some ideas on how to make life easier for yourself

Don’t take complaints or awkward suggestions to your local head. Go to them with easy to understand positive solutions instead. And don’t push your case or demand an immediate response.


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

Putting students through their paces

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

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


Teaching at my university

What does holding down a university job entail?

if you want to teach university classes like mine, in particularly regard to Thai classes, if they are school leavers they’re really as good a bunch of starters as you could ever hope to get. If you try and teach them in a systematic way, you will encounter difficulties – difficulties that might, at first, be inclined to plunge you into the deepest depths of despair.


How to motivate students

Keys to improving language learning

Motivation can either be internal or external. Students who are internally motivated usually learn English because they want to, because they enjoy learning or because they want to achieve a certain goal, not because they have to. Examples of personal goals could be pursuing a promotion at work or planning to enrol in a foreign university’s graduate programme.


Moans and groans

Postbox letter from Jeff V

I have "some" moaning and groaning to do, so I guess I'm here at the right place to do so!


Not in my classroom

Dopey foreigners and mentally deficient Koreans

It's not that I love to discipline students. I don't. But it is part of my job and I accept that. I have precious little time as it is to teach my students the English they need to know, so I would rather not waste class time telling students to sit down, keep quiet, and stop throwing things.


The burden of being fun

Why many ESL environments are so nightmarish

At its very worst, teaching is the kind of job you wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy. When the students couldn’t care less about what you have to say, and are determined to just make fun of you, the ESL classroom can literally become a living hell.


The perfect storm

Dopey foreigners and mentally deficient Koreans part one

So Korea, go ahead and continue to hire unqualified native English teachers. You know exactly what you're doing. You're hardly walking and talking testaments to your own good judgement. A plague on all your houses!


Creating classroom culture

Cultivating universal values and striving for excellence

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.


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The Hot Spot


The dreaded demo

The dreaded demo

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


Air your views

Air your views

Got something to say on the topic of teaching, working or living in Thailand? The Ajarn Postbox is the place. Send us your letters!


The cost of living

The cost of living

How much money does a teacher need to earn in order to survive in Thailand? We analyze the facts.


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?


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.


Need Thailand insurance?

Need Thailand insurance?

Have a question about health or travel insurance in Thailand? Ricky Batten from Pacific Prime is Ajarn's resident expert.


The Region Guides

The Region Guides

Fancy working in Thailand but not in Bangkok? Our region guides are written by teachers who actually live and work in the provinces.


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.