As some of you may know I have had a very rare opportunity to teach in schools in both Thailand and London for short periods of time.
So today I thought I would share a brief snip it of my experiences in Thailand.
In 2008, during my 3rd year of my teaching degree, my university was offering students who were interested an opportunity to undertake their teaching rounds in Thailand. I thought it would be such a fantastic experience and of course jumped at the chance! I had never been to Thailand before and was offered to go to either Bangkok or Chiang Mai. I chose an area called Chiang Mai - it is in the North of Thailand and myself and around 20 other student-teachers joined me.
During my 3 weeks teaching at a Christian School, I was presented with a number of challenges. Firstly, the hours were very different to what I was used to. We were all waking up so early to get to school at 7am. We would walk from our accommodation to the school and by the time we arrived we were already hot and sweaty!! It was so hot! The classrooms didn't have any air conditioning and we were teaching classes of around 35-40 students!!! Needless to say, the days were long and tiring in the heat - but oh so rewarding!!!
Fortunately, I was asked to teach English, and subsequently, my supervising teacher could speak English as well. Other teachers were asked to teach Math or Art/Music and were placed with a teacher that could speak very little, if any, English at all - so at times it was quite difficult to communicate.
I taught 3 separate grade 3 classes and whilst I was there the children were learning about occupations. The teaching in Thailand was very different to what I was used to back home. They had very minimal resources and the children sat in rows with very little group work or interaction with other students at all. Most of the learning was done by rote and listening to a cassette tape whilst the students repeated phrases.
As the rules for photos are different to what they are here, I am able to post some pics of the students and what the classrooms looked like.
This is how the children's desks were arranged.
I moved the desks around so the children could work in groups.
With very limited resources, I was forced to draw pictures of different occupations on card and create some flashcards and sentence sequencing activities. The kids seemed to enjoy it!
I would start every lesson with some movement - despite the heat - the kids LOVED the Hokey Pokey!!!
I brought in some Alphabet flashcards from home and gave them some fun learning letters of the alphabet.
This is how the students do their Independent Reading! On the floor, squashed into a tight space sitting in rows.
This is a photo of my supervising teacher and I. She was so beautiful. She would buy me red bull because she knew how exhausted I was! :) :)
I hope that you have enjoyed reading about my experiences teaching in Thailand. If anyone else has had any time teaching overseas I would love to hear your stories too!