The 'unwanted' senior teacher role

Postbox letter from Liam

This agency I worked for thought that not only could they employ anyone without doing their due diligence, but that the good teachers already at the school would do their job for them also.


It takes all sorts

There's nowhere like an ESL staffroom when it comes to a crazy and diverse range of characters

People become ESL teachers for all kinds of reasons. Nowhere else will you find such a mélange of backgrounds, attitudes and beliefs, which is what makes the ESL staffroom like no other you’ll ever work in.


Teachers that make me angry

Postbox letter from Peter

One thing that I find very annoying is listening to teachers who no matter what is expected of them, keep failing to use their common sense and preparing things in advance.


On entering the classroom

On your first day as a teacher, winging it is not an option.

The best way to be confident is to be prepared. Have a broad idea of how your first few lessons are going to go. If you can get hold of a lesson plan or course book beforehand, then wonderful. If not, at least have a ‘getting to know you’ type of lesson up your sleeve.


Different teachers, different styles

Sometimes showing the students tough love doesn't work.

My teaching colleague was just a bully who could only intimidate the younger students. ‘Find something unique that the kids are interested in, then you will be halfway there’ was some of the best advice I ever got.


Those first time teaching nerves

How not to prepare for your very first class

I’ve read about how some of you love this work whilst others almost sneer at the very suggestion that we teach for the love of it. This is just a short recollection of how I really failed to prepare for what was one of the most challenging jobs of my life.


A year in Ubon (part one)

I know. I'll go and teach English in Thailand.

Do a TEFL course, sell my bungalow, get a teaching job and move to Thailand. What could be difficult about that?


A better way to deal with class disruptions

What to do when students misbehave

This article is for teachers like me who don't have formal training to do what they do, but who nevertheless want to do the best that they can to enrich and improve their own lives as well as those of their students.


Tips for the newbie teacher

Keep these points in mind and you'll cope far better

Don't get stressed by the job. Remember that you are merely the latest in a long line of farang teachers who have come and gone. There isn't enough time to make any real progress with students' English so just try and make it fun for them.


Tin Tin in the classroom

The success and failure of eliciting

Questions form a crucial part of a successful lesson: they increase student participation and involvement, give the teacher valuable information about what the students already know, help to focus students' attention, and improve the teacher-student relationship.


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