Words Of Wisdom From An English Teacher In Thailand

on May 27, 2015

Lindsay Biffen contacted TravelBud at the end of 2014 about the dream of teaching English in Thailand. By the end of February, she had packed up her bags and was boarding a flight to Bangkok to begin her TESOL training and become an English teacher in Thailand.

Right now, Lindsay is teaching at a school in Thung Song in the south of Thailand where she is over the moon with joy and fulfillment from teaching English to her students.

We caught up with Lindsay a couple of weeks ago and she shared the following information with us, urging more people back home to embark on the same adventure.

Just say “YES”

Making a life changing decision is never an easy task. It takes careful consideration, it takes planning and it takes guts. People always tend to talk about traveling as something that they will get around to eventually doing, once the timing is right.

Unfortunately the timing will never be right if people keep putting it off. There will always be something coming up that holds them back. Opportunities arise and people minimize the tab and put it off.

Why not just say “yes”?

Saying “yes” to travelling and saying “yes” to giving back to a community is so simple.

Teaching English in Thailand is something to say “yes” to.

Teaching English in Thailand offers so much more than just sitting behind a desk. It allows for integration into a new culture and creates a space where you have the potential to change someone’s life for the better and create amazing opportunities for them.

Interested in Teaching English in Thailand? We’ll send you more info!

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Or learn more about our Teach English in Thailand program

 

Watch this 2-minute video of TravelBud’s Teach English in Thailand program:


 

It won’t be easy but it will be worth it

Saying goodbye to friends and family will not be easy. Taking that step out of your comfort zone into a foreign culture, with a foreign language and different way of life will not be easy.

TravelBud will help prepare you as best they can, but no-one can prepare you for the emotional turmoil of the initial stages of leaving all you know and love to go live and work abroad.

Making friends Teaching English in Thailand

Once you touch down in Thailand however, all of those fears and anxiety will go away. In fact you will probably question why you were so nervous in the first place.

You will meet fellow travellers that are all taking the same path as you. They will be a sea of strangers when you first meet but before you know it they will become life-long friends that you won’t be able to imagine your life without.

Interested in Teaching English in Thailand? We’ll send you more info!

INQUIRE NOW ›

Or learn more about our Teach English in Thailand program

 

Bonding in Bangkok

Bonding in Bangkok

Bangkok is the first stop of a series of destinations that you will explore. Staying in Bangkok with fellow students enrolled in the TESOL course allows for great bonding time.

It is in those first days that these bonds are formed and memories are made, creating some amazing friendships.

Koh San Road is one destination not to miss. It is a long road with different stalls selling all kinds of items. People are drinking from buckets in different bars and Thai locals are trying to sell you on the idea of eating a scorpion.

The true vibrant feeling of Thailand will become all too obvious while taking a walk down this road. Everyone is laughing, dancing and learning more about each other and themselves as they begin their journey in Thailand together.

TESOL training

TESOL classroom

Once arriving in Hua Hin, everyone enrolled on the course will settle into their new homes for the next month. They will be briefed about the classes for the next month and the training will begin.

Not many people that decide to teach English in Thailand have a teaching degree and there is no problem with that. The TESOL course will equip all students to become the best teachers they can be. Learning to become a teacher in Thailand is not a tedious task; it does not require excessive work and studying.

It really is an absolute pleasure and a breeze; as long as you are there to learn and to take those lessons seriously and apply them when teaching at a Thai school.

Through different group activities you learn how to plan lessons and how to effectively carry out the correct teaching strategies. Those that do have a teaching degree often have to abandon their methods, as teaching English as a second language creates new and different challenges that have a unique way of being addressed.

Thai language lessons are provided during the course and all foreigners learn a simple set of Thai words that make day-to-day life easier and allow for simple exchanges with locals in the community.

These exchanges are often brief and filled with gestures and laughter until both parties understand what is being communicated.

Exploring Hua Hin, Thailand

Cultural excursions in Thailand

The TESOL instructors are amazing. Not only do they train their students to become teachers, but also help them become more educated about the Thai culture, language, and way of life.

Although this is done through insightful lectures about Thai culture and history, it is also done through a series of epic excursions to the likes of Buddhist temples, Muay Thai training classes, an animal rescue shelter, and more.

Temple hopping

Thai Biddhist temple in Hua hin

One of the best ways to learn more about the Thai culture and the Buddhist religion is through excursions to temples. The most culturally enriching excursion has to be the visit to the mountain-top Buddhist temple in Hua Hin.

This temple overlooks the bay of Hua Hin, and has a beautiful gold statue of the Thai Buddha that is so large it can be seen from the beaches below. Everyone is exposed to the religion that is celebrated in Thailand.

Through paying respects to Buddha and a short meditation session, it is impossible to not feel humbled by how welcoming the Monks at the temple are to foreigners and how patient the Thai locals are in teaching the foreigners more about their religion and way of life.

It is through this excursion that the importance of Buddhism in Thailand becomes so clear, and it is so important that people respect this aspect of the Thai culture.

Buddhist temple inside a cave in Thailand

Temples are not in short supply here in Thailand. One of the most unusual yet utterly picturesque temples is located in a mountain located within the Khao Sam Roi Yot National Park about 30 minutes out of Hua Hin. It is small and to reach this temple is no easy task.

It requires a boat ride to an island that forms part of a nature reserve. Once in the nature reserve there is a long staircase embedded in rock leading to the top of a mountain. However, unlike like most temples in Thailand, this one is found tucked away within the mountain.

The stairs quickly descend into a cave in the mountain, and take all visitors through an opening where a small temple can be found sitting ever-so peacefully. The top of the mountain is open directly above this temple shedding its elegant light over this sacred structure.

Chasing waterfalls

Waterfalls in Thailand

Although Thailand does have some of the most exquisite beaches, it is recommended to do more than lounge on these beaches all day.

Taking a trip to the Pala-U waterfall is one activity that most visitors to Hua Hin do recommend. Not only does it create a space to make friends with the Thai locals, but it also provides a great hiking experience and a refreshing swim which is ever-so needed to cope with the humidity in Thailand.

Some parts of the waterfall allow for people to jump off the waterfall and into the water below. It is thrilling and fun and gets the adrenaline pumping.

There really is something so satisfying about spending a day completely surrounded by nature. Long vines twist down from the trees, fish swim carefree in the water and the noises of the insects make the jungle come to life.

Pala-U waterfall in Hua Hin Thailand

Humbly finding happiness

Monkey Mountain in Thailand

People tend go searching for happiness; however happiness is created, not found. Through living in Hua Hin, many humbling things will happen to you.

These can be in the form of a spiritual awakening through visits to temples. It can be through the various interactions with the Thai locals where you experience their kind and generous nature.

It can be through teaching at an English camp and seeing the determination in a child’s eyes as they learn a new English word.

All these humbling experiences will be the building blocks of an experience in Thailand which will gift all those fortunate enough to teach in this humbling nation, an infinite amount of happiness in their lives.

TESOL graduation on the beach in Thailand

Time spent in Hua Hin is not only filled with fun, laughter, beaches, and great adventures, it is also time spent learning about the Thai culture and interacting with the locals.

It is a time creating memories and experiences that will make you happy. It is, however, only the tip of the ice berg of what will unfold into the greatest adventures you have yet to experience.

So if teaching abroad has ever been something you considered doing, quit putting it off and just say “YES” already – trust me, you will not regret it!

Interested in Teaching English in Thailand? We’ll send you more info!

INQUIRE NOW ›

Or learn more about our Teach English in Thailand program

 

You might also want to read:

About Stu Brown

Stu has always carried with him a passion for exploring the world through work and travel experiences.

After a year-long adventure working at a school in London and travelling throughout Europe, Stu began his tertiary studies at Stellenbosch University in Cape Town, South Africa, obtaining his Bachelor of Arts degree (BA) in Social Dynamics.

He also holds a 120-Hour internationally accredited TEFL/TESOL certificate and understands what it takes to teach and travel responsibly. As TravelBud CEO he understands that truly exciting and life-changing adventures only happen when you step outside your comfort zone; and not a day goes by when he doesn’t challenge the team to do the same!

Filed under  Teacher Diaries • Thailand 

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2 Comments

  1. Vanetia Mentor

    Thanks for the great info in this blog …. I am soooooo eager to sign up!!! there is so much beauty in the world yet to be discovered by all. Being rooted in one’s place of birth is so over rated.

    Reply
    • Stu Brown

      It’s my pleasure Vanetia. We can’t wait to set you up with this incredible experience in Thailand!

      Reply

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