I taught for two years before I camehere and I can't imagine going into the classroom in Thailand without having had this course I've been blown away by how much I've been able to learn and I know is going to carry over into my classroom there's so much passion and it's just crazy to think that I never considered doing this and now all of a sudden I'm like maybe this is what I should have done the whole time I feel very comfortable about going into a Thai classroom and just starting to teach I feel really connected to these people that I've only known for a month now There's a like-mindedness about this group of people, there may be a hundred and sixty of us but there's a like-mindedness.
Coming into a culture and having someone to coach us and to have us really understand what the culture is really about, it was really comforting Our program prepares you before you arrive in Thailand makes sure that you get here safely andthat you have all the information you need Once you arrive we take you through an amazing orientation, truck filled with different activities and new knowledge about Thailand and how to adapt, then wetake you through to the course and we spend three plus weeks kind of preparingyou in the methodologies of TESOL taking you out into a Thai schoolletting even get some experience giving you feedback and helping you hone yourcraft and then once you go off into the schools once we've found you placementwe then support you after the placement In making sure that you're adjusted andthat you're successful and if any questions or issues do arise that we're there to give you our full support So our cultural orientation experiences amixture of in-class learning and awesome excursions out in Thailand, we take participants to Muay Thai lessons We take them to pineapple plantations where they can sample the best pineapple and then take the pineapples and feed it toelephants at an elephant sanctuary we them to a beautiful mountain top temples loads of really cool cultural experiences.
but it's not all about the excursions, it's also about the in-class learning so we have lectures on Thai politics and culture, we have Thai language lessons and all this is roundedoff by a really cold beach BBQ where it's like our official welcome to you to Thailand the entire concept of the orientation which was really was really fun it was cool I appreciated that they give us a really in-depth insight to Thailand and to the people and to the culture we kind of learned some do's anddon'ts we were able to learn a little bit ofthe language, a little bit of politics a little bit of that kind of stuff trying to give us a well rounded idea of the place we were going to call home for the next several months.
Throughout the TESOL course we cover some key teaching methodologies and build on that with modules about teaching various languageskills, managing the classroom, structuring lessons as well as whatvarious age groups mean and how expectations of Thai schools come intoplay It's been a lot of work and a lot of homework A lot of bonding time thoughbecause we're all doing the same things the TESOL course itself is brilliantpreparation I could walk into any classroom anywhere and give any one of those lessons with confidence.
Participants get to put all of this intopractice every day with their peers as well as get a chance to teach for twodays in a Thai classroom and really see what it's like in a Thai classroom beforethey move on to their placements The camp is like being thrown into the deepend but in the best way possible 100% the camp was the most effective wayto kind of see if you're qualified enough and see if you can really makethis happen, I could see myself being a teacher just based on the camp alone.
The TESOL course has continually evolved over time through a lot of hardwork of the staff here all the different TESOL instructors we've had over timethey've each brought in their own unique personal teaching experience, so we'vebeen able to add that to our methodology attended different international TESOLconferences to get different perspectives On how to teach TESOL and then practical observations in the field of our teachers to see how our methodworks in a realistic school setting I think what sets us apart is how much wecare and the experience that we bring to the table every single Westerner whoworks here has gone through the same program that these people are goingthrough so we understand where they're coming from, so we know what it's like, we know how scary it can be The fact that everyone who's here to help me out in whatever capacity – even if it's setting up a bank account finding a placement teaching the TESOL course They've all been through all those steps already themselves and you can you just tell youjust know that that they weren't trained how to do this they they know how to doit because they've been there and they know exactly what you're going through, and it just feels very easy and friendly and nice.