Reflections of Teacher Hossain
Coming up to the end of my year teaching with Phuket Has Been Good To Us, there are many things that I would like to share with you. Teaching has always been challenging and exciting to me, and this challenge keeps on driving me forward. People often say teachers never reach the end of the learning continuum as there is no end to learning. I believe anyone will certainly experience this if they happen to teach in Asian countries, especially in Thailand, where every student brings a new world into the classroom. Every day I experience new things, learn to adapt, experiment and improvise, and ultimately I improved as a teacher throughout my time here. I am glad that I was given this golden opportunity to work for a charity teaching organization, Phuket Has Been Good To Us Foundation in Thailand. Teaching is always exciting, but working with underprivileged children makes it all the more unpredictable.
It’s really a mammoth task to put a years teaching and learning experience into a handful of words. But let me try.
Teaching in a Thai government school is both challenging and exciting at the same time. We, my fellow Foundation teachers and myself, teach with very limited resources, our students come to class from different backgrounds and with different English proficiency. This makes teaching itself quite challenging, but this also brings us together as a team. We plan our lessons together, talk through the lessons, and try to come up with the best possible ways to adapt the plan to cater for different learners and learning styles. This has helped us to work together as a team, collaborate with other teachers, and plan lessons to meet the needs of all different types of learners.
While working with Phuket Has Been Good To Us I taught students between the ages of 12 and 18 years old. Before I began teaching at the school I reviewed the Thai exams that the students are required to take. The Thai exam system demands a higher reading proficiency from the students. Therefore, I started to focus on improving the reading skills of all my students.
I began with reading simple texts and doing basic reading exercises to improve reading skills. Gradually my students moved on to working with long reading passages and complex linguistic structures. They have also worked on reading sub-skills like scanning and skimming. They have begun to master these skills and I am sure that they will continue to improve in the future.
I would love to have had more teaching hours with my students and more time to see them grow.
Coconut Club has been an exciting part of my job at the school. This gave me the opportunity to build a good relationship with the students outside of the classroom, experiment with different engaging and communicative activities, and work outside of the box. I truly enjoyed all the games we played with the children at Coconut Club, but my favorite was the running Olympics, students run to the end of the line, change their costumes and run back to teammates like a relay. Moreover, I have learned new skills at Coconut Club, especially arts and crafts, which will help me with teaching in the future.
Every Saturday morning we take students swimming which has been quite fun for me. My weekend could not have a better start than this. The naïve smiles on your students’ faces make you forget it is hard work. I will treasure these memories for the rest of my life.
Once every two months, we celebrate a birthday party for students, and this is the best part of the job! Nothing can be as enjoyable as celebrating such an important event with students, their smiles, laughter, and happy faces are the things worth treasuring. We pack gifts for students depending on their ages and try to think of what each individual student would like to receive. I do not have the language to express how I feel when I see the happy faces of my students on this day. I was lucky to have attended 3 birthday parties during my time here and I am going to cherish the happy memories of those days for the rest of my life.
To conclude, I would say, I have lived the most memorable year of my life here in Phuket. I am definitely going to miss my wise colleagues, my passionate students, my welcoming Thai friends, and this beautiful Kamala beach.