The Ideal Student

What qualities and characteristics make the perfect student

This blog doesn't focus on teachers and how to achieve near-perfection, but on what the ideal student would be like. Let's keep in mind though that nobody's perfect and that most teachers would probably be over the moon if only a slight majority of students showed some of the traits mentioned


Too many games!

Beware of turning your class into gameaholics

"I'm really starting to take a dislike to this class," my colleague complained in the teachers' room. "All they want to do is play games, and it's not even like they're a bunch of kids.


Class control

Tips on how to make your kids classes go smoothly

You need to know how to control kids better than they know how to control you. The way you control any class depends on what size class you have and also on the age of the children, but here are some tips on how to keep your class together.


How to stifle student confidence

Confidence is key when students want to improve their English

Once confidence is acquired, the student makes remarkable self-perception and strives further to succeed. Therefore, instead of killing this important trait, let's develop it among our students.


Beauty's only skin deep

Young, good-looking teachers don't always have the upper hand you know

If you're not a handsome, beautiful-looking teacher, you may want to look away now. The latest Twitter craze among Asian academic students is to share photos of their gorgeous new English teacher on-line and show the world how lucky they are.


Teaching 'with' students, 'to' students and 'at' students

Sometimes I decide to just look on the funny side of trying to teach

I've been teaching in various capacities almost two years in Thailand now, and the differences between teaching students who want to be with you versus those who must be there are quite clear.


How to motivate your students

An extract from a new book on teaching English to Thai students

Many studies have been undertaken to determine the reasons why South East Asian students have problems learning English. I would add to the list: weakness of the curriculum design, limited school resources, class sizes, poor course design, and course-books not always being relevant to the student's own environment.


Teachers playing games in class

Is it a case of too much monkeying around?

Games can reinforce what has been taught earlier in a lesson and can be used as a filler or as a reward for good work. But to expect foreign English teachers to spend the majority of their time entertaining students, especially adults, is, to me, just not right.


Learn all your students' names?

Surely you can't be serious.

It's never been my intention to become best friends with any of my students but I truly believe that a good relationship and strong rapport with students is absolutely vital in order to begin being an effective teacher. If I ever expect to receive the respect of my students (which is all the time) then the obvious thing for me to do is give respect to them as early as possible.


Thai students and the fine art of copying

I couldn't believe what was going on in the classroom

I come from a society and a culture where the copying of anything in or out of a classroom is simply looked on as cheating. Not only cheating the whole idea of education but cheating oneself out of any possibility of learning, not to mention a total disrespect of the student who goes to the trouble of learning the correct answers in the first place. So I was appalled beyond measure when I saw my first example of copying in my classroom at my first school in Phuket.


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