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Thread: Which Course Books?

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    Established User Array martyboy's Avatar
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    Which Course Books?

    Hi folks,

    I am doing some voluntary teaching in rural Thailand soon (chivalry is not dead) and I can't get much sense out of the school as to which curriculum/course books they use. I was told they use the Ministry of Education curriculum for English teaching. Does anyone know if these course books can be obtained outside Thailand. I would like to have a look prior to departing the UK. I did ask the Thai Embassy in London but they thought I was probably a farang nutter.

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    A lousy and daring fellow Array Bubba's Avatar
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    Re: Which Course Books?

    It's ages since I've taught kids but I think as a basic rule of thumb ... anything that comes out of the ministry of education it's best to politely ignore it. Course books are all pretty much of a muchness, so the one that you choose won't make THAT much of a difference. how about this.

    Kids: Let's Go series.
    Adults: Reward series + resource packs
    Nuts In A Blender

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    Established User Array Sanitysub's Avatar
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    Re: Which Course Books?

    At a loss. I tried "Googling" it for you but no joy (sorry!)

    S.
    I read it all, every word, and I still don't understand a thing. Travis

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    Re: Which Course Books?

    Last edited by ScienceGuy; 12th January 2009 at 18:07.

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    Re: Which Course Books?

    Quote Originally Posted by ScienceGuy View Post
    There are no books. Nobody at the MOE can read English so they randomly copy/paste English into MS Word and call it curriculum.

    Grab a copy of "The New Headway" from beginner to intermediate with the CDs and you will be light-years ahead of anyone else here. Photocopy the student book and make the school pay for it or the students(maybe $2 each?).

    Then take the final exam from each level and give it to the students. If they pass, do the next level, if they fail, teach from that level.

    Just for reference, our school uses "Super Goal" for English, which is a conversation book for upper-intermediate students; however, the students are beginner level. The lower levels have "Target Readings".
    No way??!!?? *Looks for "shocked smilie" but doesn't find one*...

    S.

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    ....and you're under. Array Mr Bean's Avatar
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    Re: Which Course Books?

    Try 'Essential Grammar in Use' via the Amazon site.

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    Established User Array martyboy's Avatar
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    Re: Which Course Books?

    Thanks folks. I have a copy of New Headway Beginner and Elementary students books with their workbooks. From the vibes I am getting they should be the right level (small under funded rural school who can't afford to pay teachers) The audio cassettes (school doesn't have a CD player) are 30! Does anyone know where I can get one any cheaper?
    I will photocopy each lesson and hand the copy lessons to the kids. Testing the kids from day one seems a good idea ScienceGuy. Where do I get the tests? The students book doesn't contain tests.

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    Re: Which Course Books?

    For audio you can try downloading it from bit torrent sites, or a teacher here might have a copy that they can send you.

    As for the student books, buy one and get the book copied, it is pretty cheap depending on the size of the book.
    Daniel Bedingfield claimed that his new album is what it would sound like if Sting, Stevie Wonder and Micheal Jackson were in a basement together - I haven't got the album so I'll have to imagine the sound of a blind bloke and a Geordie kicking the shit out of a pedophile.

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    Re: Which Course Books?

    youll need text that has a lot of info on it.

    the reason for that is because its a low resource context, youll need to stretch that text for as long as you can.

    ive found Raymond Murphy's Essential Grammar in Use (he has a couple levels)...widely popular book, just chalk full of exercises and examples (with pictures!) its a great fit.

    i teach very low level monks with it. i can get a 2.25 hour lesson done with 2 pages. although i have powerpoint to set up and use examples with, i prep each section with examples- not too much talk. but they need to see the parts. then get them in the text- then extend it.

    using a text in a low resource context (most likely low level students as well)

    1. go slowly
    2. provide many examples before letting them practice in the text- this is absolutely essential
    3. give them lots of time to work
    4. dont do too much...let them work in groups

    ...see a pattern? the graves of bitter thai teflers are filled with those who push and pushed low level students (usually for the right reasons though). you have to go as slow as you can. a dense text in this light can really make your lesson complete...as its always better to do 80-90% of the text and run out of time (make it homework) than to finish a text with 30 min left at the end.


    if you can think of a good communicative activity for each grammar section, you can stretch a murphy text to be the only thing you need. (a whiteboard helps too, but you gotta work it with what ya got!)





    good luck. let us know how it goes
    Last edited by stfranalum; 10th August 2008 at 08:18.

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    Something Or Other... Array panhunger's Avatar
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    Re: Which Course Books?

    Quote Originally Posted by martyboy View Post
    voluntary teaching
    ...oh boy another volunteer...that's all this country needs, teachers working for free...
    "Goddamn it Lord, bless oh ye this bacon..."

    George Liquor American

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    Re: Which Course Books?

    aww come on homie, how can you not when you hear that??

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    Re: Which Course Books?

    Martyboy...........do you know which age group you wil be teaching?

    There have been some good course books recommended on here but before splasing out on lots of dosh I think you need to know the students first. Do they even understand the alphabet?

    If they are KG or early learners, or older kids with very limited skills then flash cards are always pretty good.

    There are several sites which are pretty good for resources that you can download and print off. abcteach -- 5000+ free printable pages and worksheets caters for all age ranges with a lot of printable material. You could also check out the resources at TES - Teaching jobs, resources & ideas from the Times Educational Supplement

    Ignore the poster "Panhunger". He is probably having a bad day.

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    Re: Which Course Books?

    My guess O.P in rural Thailand is that textbooks are not the way to go. The vast majority of textbooks here at pitched at a level way beyond the students here. first find out what they know. If they can't read which is the level of the vast majority or rural students I've met, then textbooks are going to be a waste of time. As for testing start with how many of them can write 100 words introducing themselves, how many can read 20 common verbs and how many can answer simple questions. If they have these skills post back and people will have a better ideas. In rural Thailand not many have these skills.

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    Senior Member Array stfranalum's Avatar
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    Re: Which Course Books?

    ^^ flash cards are a winner in almost all contexts, especially in ones where they need a base vocab- and probably dont have that yet (big assumption- but in poorer areas thats largely true)

    so getting them repetitions on key vocab is a good first step. and a good way to push the textbook thing down the road a couple weeks until you can sense their level.

    imho- i wouldnt go with a 'lets go' type text. its colorful and neat to look at. but ultimately too expensive, and one its used, it dosnt stand on its own- aka. very teacher centered. you need a leader to hold hands with the learner as you go along.

    mix up your text. pics and eye appealing stuff with a bunch of exercises-based texts.

    and yes...help us help you-- whats the teaching context?

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    Established User Array martyboy's Avatar
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    Re: Which Course Books?

    Hi Panhunger, If rural schools on tight budgets can't afford you slick professionals what are they supposed to do, chuck their kids on the scrap heap?

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