What a load of bullshit!
Nothing irks me more than reading that statement and you see it all over the web wherever the topic of teaching in Thailand is discussed or promoted. It’s a statement that’s both grossly misleading and wildly inaccurate.
A rotting, putrid, stinking corpse
EFL teachers are put into positions of authority and responsibility, most at a time in their lives when they have yet to learn what it means to be responsible. EFL teachers must learn to teach properly. They must learn to love their work. They must learn to see it as a mission and an honor. They must learn to be accountable for their actions, or their inactions. In essence, they must learn to become fuller human beings.
How to conduct yourself as a teacher
I got to thinking about some of my past employees, good and bad. Instead of telling you about of some of the more “interesting” interviews I have conducted, I thought I would write about what types of behavior and teachers schools and agencies here want and do NOT want.
Reasons that a teacher agency could be good for some teachers
Teacher agencies are just like people. Some are fun to be with and some you just wanna kick to the curb. Shop around, ask around. Check to see if the agency you are thinking of working with actually possesses a valid license from The Ministry of Education, many do not. Remember to keep an open mind and not to be too quick to judge though.
Why do teacher agencies have such a negative image?
Most agencies just drop foreign teachers off at a school and leave them to fend for themselves. They give teachers no curriculum, lesson plans, grading rubrics, textbooks, workbooks, realia or anything else to help them. The foreign teacher is left to deal with all of the linguistic and cultural misunderstandings that will inevitably arise, on their own.
As a refreshing change from someone writing about their ten years of hell in a Thai prison, you might want to take a look at Bangkok Exit written by Ryan Humphreys. Ryan gives readers a humorous warts 'n' all account of his first year teaching in Thailand at Sathit Wittaya School.
How do the two biggest cities in Thailand measure up?
Read a terrific account from a teacher who gave up the Chiang Mai lifestyle to go and work in the capital Bangkok. It's very much a tale of two cities - and how one dedicated teacher fared in both.
One woman's quest to find a teaching job through informal interviews
Kathy Willis from the USA contacted me to say that she was going to spend a whole week interviewing for teaching jobs in Bangkok. Yes sir, she was going to run a finger down all those banner ads on the ajarn.com homepage and hit the mean streets in search of suitable employment.
Making the outside world a home
I feel that the TESOL community, (if indeed there is such a thing as a TESOL community), is at a crossroads. Since so few of us have ever felt really comfortable living in another man's land, our story is not only one of alienation. It is also one of fragmentation, disillusion, and dissimulation.
The ups and downs of over fifteen years 'in the game'
It's a been a long and often painful journey, but here's an account of 15 years in the Thailand TEFL business. My careers officer never once told me that it might turn out like this.