Teaching toddlers in Thailand…week 1

I was certified to teach English to adults. My post-training work experience was in tutoring elementary and high school students in English. And now my job is teaching babies who don’t really speak Thai yet let alone English. Which I am hugely ill-prepared for… And yet I still think it’s great.

The first week at my new school was, in a word, chaotic. Day 1 was spent mostly just observing and fumbling around trying to keep head above water in a sea of tiny toddlers. Day 2 veered sharply into the unexpected when the school closed down after the first hour due to a feared outbreak of hand foot and mouth disease (it was later discovered the illness was something else less serious). I had no students for the remainder of the day, and had Wednesday off as well while the school was disinfected. Thursday I attempted to assume an authoritative role but on account of me still having no idea what I was doing, I relied heavily on my TA and the Thai teacher. Friday I began to act like a teacher. It wasn’t disastrous, but it was far from running smoothly. As it turns out, a month of being trained to teach English to adults is about as much help in a toddler classroom as a bag of rocks. Although toddlers might like to play with a bag of rocks, so that might actually be more helpful…

There will be a steep learning curve as I adjust to preparing lessons for little kids, but after the initial period of transition I think it will be great. I really like the school and the kids are adorable. Once I find my footing I think I’ll make an excellent teacher to the tiny people.

I also found out that my school has a music room, which means after months of a piano-less life I will finally be able to play again. Now I just have to convince them to buy a school cello and I’ll be happy here forever!

Bonus: pictures of me attempting to teach

2 thoughts on “Teaching toddlers in Thailand…week 1

  1. Love your outfit. Toddlers enjoy music, and since you have a musical background, you might want to incorporate music (and maybe dance, too. I can see it now — Riverdance Thai). Check out YouTube. Also, YouTube has some great videos and graphics with songs for little people, so if you have a computer in your classroom or have a personal tablet, they’d probably like singing along to the videos.


  2. One of my best teaching experiences was teaching four year olds. I had two who were fantastic. Even now I tear up when I think about it–and they are now probably 25 years old.


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