Grammar vs speech

Differing techniques inside the classroom

In my experience, students recite a grammar rule or know the rule or learn the rule and maybe even vaguely understand the rule, but then you ask them a basic question and they don't understand.


Dear NIETS

An open letter to The National Institute of Education Testing Service

I had hoped to send this letter to you directly but I suspect your offices are besieged by angry protestors, frustrated with corruption and incompetency. So it seemed a better idea to write you an open letter. I am writing this in the hope that this year's O-NET (Ordinary National Educational Test) examinations will better assess the Mathayom 6 students than previous efforts have done.


A 'one of a kind' camp

Organising the perfect English camp for students

Last term, I tried a different kind of camp. The theme was "Enhancing English proficiency in preparation for ASEAN 2015 through games and dance." I can say it was great because my students said that it was the most enjoyable camp they had ever been on


Perceptive young learners

Postbox letter from Carl Slaughter

Here's a story about some very young but very sharp Thai and Chinese students.


It's been a great adventure

Postbox letter from William Putnam

It’s been a fantastic year. I have lived in Southeast Asia since September 10th, 2012. I was not sure I was going to work as a teacher when I arrived. I viewed my travels here as a long vacation. However, once I realized I liked it here, I began to look for jobs so that I could stay longer.


Why is English so poor in Thailand?

Students are simply just not 'taught' here

Recently I read an article that stated adults in Thailand are ranked 55th from a list of 60 countries on their English proficiency skills. From what I have seen as an English teacher working in government secondary schools over the last 10 years, I'm not surprised,


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.


On having an English room

The advantage of having your own classroom space

I consider my classroom to be an extension of my house. After lunch, I can lock the door and take a little nap. Or I can watch my favorite movies and news broadcasts from The Philippiness. It's so different from the days of old when I didn't have a room and I had to bear the heat and noise of the library or the clinic or other 'makeshift classrooms'.


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.


Ten reasons why I love my job and my life in Thailand

Thought you would enjoy reading something positive

Life offers many twists and opportunities to those with an open mind; and after an amicable divorce from my wife and selling my house and possessions, I hit the road with a small backpack for company. After three years on the road I stumbled into Thailand.


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