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» Welcome to This Is Thailand - The Ajarn Forum

Established in 2000 with continuous archives since 2004, we are one of the oldest forums in Thailand.

We are best known for being a "Teaching in Thailand" forum, though we have attracted all walks of life through the years.

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I think I have finally completed the culture shock cycle.

Oct 19, 2014 - 1:41 PM - by Sanuk Canuk
Sanuk Canuk's Avatar
I have only been in Thailand for 7 years now but it now "feels" more like home to me than Canada does. Being married, having a kid in school, working, and having a house and vehicles to take care of has really normalized my stay here. I still get frustrated by cultural and language misunderstandings, the labour and immigration bureaucracy and the reduced opportunities for advancement here but I no longer let it get to me too much. I am concerned about the teacher licensing fiasco in Thailand as well as the ever reducing salary/cost of living ratio, but these problems aren't that much worse than the issues friends and family are facing back home.

I think the biggest change in my Thailand "experience" came when I decided to get married and give up the freedom that the single TELF lifestyle provides. While I don't regret my decisions I do occasionally miss the ability to hop in a van and head to a beach for a weekend on a whim (as apposed to arranging where to go with the Mrs, packing for the kid, fighting traffic in the car, ect.). The more entangled I get with familial commitments and with taking care of my stuff, the less I feel like my existence in Thailand is an adventure. I guess that is what we do over time, exchange freedom for comfort and a social safety net.

Just curious, does this resonate with other people who have been here 5+ years or am I totally off my nut.
  40 Replies | 2,356 Views

Road Hunting in Isaan

Oct 26, 2014 - 11:47 AM - by Smiley
Looking at google maps last week I noticed a squiggly looking road between Kalisin and Sakhon Nakhon along highway 12...upon closer inspection I noticed a loop that included that part of road and another branching off 12...highway 2330 for about 30km was pretty squiggly too and that connected to another couple of roads that eventually connected to the highway that I live on...

so off I went...4 hours later I was back home with knowledge of a nice 4 hour loop that included some fun motorcycling roads...

A couple of days later I was back in Google maps looking for squiggly lines...I was already aware of route 12 from Khon Kaen to Plok very twisty through the hills in a couple of spots...and then I noticed road 203 from the Petchabun turn off of 12 North to Loei...very squiggly indeed...

so we decided to make a big loop using 12 to 203 and then up to Chiang Khan and 211 over to Nong Khai and then down 2 to Udon and then various back roads around the Lam pao dam area and back home...here's some of what we saw...

Ok so...

Here's 203 coming down into a valley...

Here's 203 coming through the valley...


here it is coming up out of the valley...

... [Read More]
  37 Replies | 1,571 Views

Post Your Morning Coffee Scene...

Oct 23, 2014 - 7:33 AM - by Smiley
So there are some drawbacks to living in the middle of nowhere...8 km to the nearest 7-11, 40 km to the nearest BigC or Lotut...but this is not one of those drawbacks...

Waking up to this every morning really makes the day to day grind of living in Thai society easier...having this 30 minutes to center myself and recharge my tolerance batteries makes those daily frustrations much less taxing...


As I sit in my hammock out on the back deck, I'm reminded daily of why I love living here...of course I only get this scene for about half the year as it's just brown dirt for the other half...and that makes me appreciate the few months twice a year when the work is done and the fields are left alone to grow...it makes for beautiful, peaceful mornings...

So share your morning coffee scene...
  28 Replies | 1,401 Views

Hey! How can we? Teach in LOS.

Oct 23, 2014 - 2:57 PM - by arephree
We (wife, son (4)),
Are thinking of teaching in Asia (maybe LOS) sometime in the next 3 years.
Many of the international schools prefer IB teaching experience and British educators.
Me-10+ years teaching with NCLB Highly Qualified Secondary Ed. Math Credential. The NCLB cred. that basically requires secondary math teachers to complete ALL (calc 1. 2, 3 and worse) to teach HS in the US.
Wife-10 years elementary school. Bsc. and M.Ed. , special ed.
BUT We don't have, IGPSE (<---correct ) or IB.
many, many of my students here in The US are my at top ranked school district have gone on to US Ivy League schools and other top (love to Stanford) schools.
Do we need to be British or UKish to apply to Harrow in Bkk, Hong Kong, and others like them? Their websites employment sections all prefer this. (the UK, IB, PGSEI <---)
If so, WHY? I ask because ALL my international exchange students (fr. UK, Asia, Africa) all prefer US universities. And 99% are accepted.
So, Why the preference for non US teachers, when most international kiddos want US uni's?

Can someone illuminate the terrain for us? Thank you. kap kuun krup and kha.
  23 Replies | 1,092 Views

Canadian Parliament Shooting.

Oct 22, 2014 - 11:11 PM - by Anna Key
Anna Key's Avatar
May as well open the thread now. It's an ongoing incident as I type.
  22 Replies | 1,331 Views

Controlling Mosquito Larva

Oct 28, 2014 - 8:29 AM - by Joko
Joko's Avatar
I've got a water basin in my bathroom which I use for the 'dunk n' chuck' method of showering. It's a rather nice looking thing, all done up in rose colored tiles. It doesn't have a drain plug at the bottom, which is a drawback. Lately though, I've noticed a problem which is really bothering me. Mosquito larva. I can see them squiggling around down there, waiting to metamorphose into a mosquito. Naturally, I want to get rid of them. I don't like pouring live creatures over my body twice a day.

How can I inhibit larval growth by still keep the water safe to bath with? I'm thinking maybe I could pour a little chlorine in there. I tried a splash of bleach last night, but this morning, they're still squiggling around in there.

Maybe a small fish that eats mosquito larva...

Any suggestions?
  21 Replies | 636 Views

Where to buy a motorcycle?

Oct 27, 2014 - 4:55 AM - by Begemot
I've found a few decent deals on Craigslist but is there a better place to search? I'm looking for a motorcycle not moped/scooter.. Something a few years old but in good shape. Any ideas/tips would be greatly appreciated.
  21 Replies | 848 Views

Comfort food.

Oct 20, 2014 - 7:48 AM - by russellsimpson
russellsimpson's Avatar
We all have one, or maybe several.

I have one that's well established and been with me for years. Also, one of the very few foods I will eat that comes in a can.

Campbell's tomato soup. With loads of salted crackers, lots of pepper and the secret ingredient, a handful or two of nutritional yeast .

I could and have lived on it.

... [Read More]
  19 Replies | 1,882 Views

Carl's Jr Silom

Oct 21, 2014 - 10:50 AM - by pathumseb
pathumseb's Avatar
Went to the Silom (Sala Daeng BTS) branch yesterday and was impressed. Burger was juicy, well cooked and full of flavor. I went for the Western Burger so it came loaded with bacon, cheese and onion rings. Bill came to 250 baht with a unlimited refill of soft drinks. Fries were the best I have had in BKK, crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. The ambience of the restaurant can be best described as a step of from McDonalds, it certainly felt less rushed. Will be going back and hoping they open in Future Park.
  19 Replies | 1,240 Views

French bakery chain Paul opens in Bangkok

Oct 18, 2014 - 1:24 PM - by Beavis
Beavis's Avatar
Purplesmoker, do you approve?

French bakery chain Paul opens in Bangkok


Founded over a century ago in Croix, Northern France, Paul opens its door at luxe mall Central Embassy (1/F) today (Oct 15).

Why you should be excited: It's a big chain so the French love to poo-poo it, but half the time it's better than the neighborhood boulanger.

Best know for producing over 140 types of bread, the chain has opened over 400 branches throughout the world, also specializing in pastries, cakes and croissants, as well as sandwiches and salads.

- See more at: French bakery chain Paul opens in Bangkok today | BK Magazine Online
  16 Replies | 1,160 Views

Professional dress in Thailand

Oct 19, 2014 - 10:55 AM - by Wreck Tangle
Wreck Tangle's Avatar
Are there any rules as to dress code in a Catholic school in Bangkok for a woman? It was mentioned conservative side but the heat alone, what length skirts and can you wear sleeveless blouses? Any women on the forum thank you for your feedback. Also can you buy large size bras in Bangkok or should I have them sent?


Another question is should you accept gifts from students parents?
  15 Replies | 1,026 Views

loan words

Oct 29, 2014 - 9:10 PM - by troysantos

Wondering about loan words. I know of the type of loan word called ทับศัพท์ in Thai. For example, computer being คอมพิวเตอร์ in Thai. But, how about this type of word, and is it also called a loan word? Clock tower / หอนาฬิกา and wristwatch / นาฬิกาข้อมือ? Are they also considered loan words? If there is a list of such words, that'd be awesome because it'd be a cool way to learn lots of words. For example, if someone only knows clock / watch, they could also learn tower and wrist fairly easily, it seems.

I am about to start teaching English in Hat Yai and see this as one cool tool for learning vocab easily.

So, two questions. Are these loan words, and if not what are they called? (Everything is called something!) And, anyone know where I can find such a list?

I know I could start compiling a list but these are the only two words I've been able to come up with. Also, I can ask the students to help me think of new words, and find a website with a list of such words. I will ask for their help if I don't find something first. Many of my students are motivated to learn.

  15 Replies | 466 Views

new chapter

Oct 21, 2014 - 11:19 PM - by stickycheeze
hi i am stickycheeze, i am a south african who finishing his education degree in a months time. i am moving to thailand in early jan, i hope to find paradise. in need of some guidance on finding a job on the southern coast. please help!!
  13 Replies | 797 Views

classroom management: help!

Oct 29, 2014 - 1:00 PM - by sjkelman

I'm a new teacher in Thailand struggling through my first month of employment, wondering to myself, will it always be this difficult? I currently work at a well-known language school chain. As far as I've read, this school is pretty much on the lower end of desirable jobs, but being a new teacher with almost no experience, I felt it would be a good place to start. Though my boss is very nice and I get along fine with the other teachers, I'm having quite a bit of trouble with classroom management, or lack thereof. Being one of the only female teachers, I am the prime candidate for teaching the younger children. I'm okay with this, except the classes are two hours long. Sometimes three! Okay, I've thought to myself, I just have to make it fun, i.e. lots of games and silliness. Even this can fail though, as kids just get to the point where they're not listening to me, and they've got that look in their eye of "yeah, right!" I absolutely fear that look, because that's when I know, for sure, that I've lost control. This happens most with a class of five-year-olds that I teach, and also with an eight-year-old that I've been privately tutoring for three hours, four days a week. I just finished my last day with him, which should come as a relief, but has actually made me feel like a total failure. Each class with him got progressively worse, as there were no real consequences for him acting out. I've read that thais believe it is the teacher's fault if the student is acting out or not doing well. What do I do in this scenario? Is it okay to have a word with the parent? I prefer positive reinforcement as opposed to punishment, but a lot of times my good word doesn't go far, and neither do stickers... [Read More]
  12 Replies | 537 Views

Halloween Jeopardy Questions

Oct 30, 2014 - 7:38 PM - by Beavis
Beavis's Avatar
Ex: This popular candy is named after famous ballplayer Babe Ruth.

She wrote the famous novel Frankenstein.

Dia de los Muertos, the name for the Mexican equivalent of Halloween, translates to this in English.


The astrological sign of someone born on Halloween.

By the way I meant Jeopardy answers.

Feel free to include your own, or be rude and make me do all the work.
  12 Replies | 277 Views

Just introducing myself

Oct 22, 2014 - 5:24 AM - by Begemot
Hi all...

I'll be arriving in BKK on November 10th. Been in the middle east for the past year and can't wait to get outta here. If anyone wants to meet up for a beer and give me the low down I'll buy. My plan is to take a couple weeks off to relax and then hit the ground running.

I have and MA TEFL and I'm currently an Academic Director at a language center.
  11 Replies | 763 Views

I need a teaching job

Oct 20, 2014 - 5:31 PM - by mrobeabiodun
I am a certified teacher with relevant teaching qualifications. I am a holder of Barchelor of Arts in Education, B.A.ED, in English language. I equally have a TEFL certificate. I have equally been certified as an IGCSE English language teacher by Cambridge.

I have had six yearsí experience in the teaching of English language in international schools where I have been trained and exposed to various curricula like American and British curricula. In the last five years, I have had opportunities to attend various seminars and trainings that have enabled me to acquire skills and techniques of teaching English language at every level of education.I was also trained by the British Council as an IELTS examiner. Most of these trainings have equally enabled me to use I.T. to enhance the teaching and learning of English language.

I have a passion for teaching young people, adults and children, and this has made my teaching effective and efficient among the pupils and students I teach. I have a belief that these pupils and students have every ability to learn English language if my teaching style and skill are tailored according to their abilities and levels .

Please contact me.
  11 Replies | 662 Views

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