Before Coming to Thailand
Why did you want to teach in Thailand?
I want to teach English in Thailand because of the opportunity to travel to a place I’ve never been before and experience life like Thai people do. The food and beautiful country were big factors in my decision as well.
How was your experience finding a job through your agency On the Mark Education Consulting Inc?
On the Mark was extremely helpful in finding this job. I am so happy with the school, my apartment, and the town.
What website did you use to book your ticket to Thailand?
I used Expedia to book my ticket to Bangkok.
Teaching Life in Thailand
What was your first impression of Thailand upon arrival?
My first impression was that Thai drivers are crazy! When I arrived, I was very sleep deprived after 20+ hours of flight time, so I was a little delirious. Also it was very hot. Bangkok is an absolutely massive city and once I got settled in to my hotel and took a much needed shower, I ventured out for dinner with some new friends. I found the Thai people to be very kind and helpful and the other teachers so nice!
What was the biggest culture shock about Thailand and/or in your current city?
The biggest culture shock to me has been the food. I had never eaten Thai food before coming to Thailand so I was really overwhelmed when I arrived. I live in a pretty small, rural community in Esan, so it’s tough to get Western food here. However, daily life is pretty normal, I just really miss Mexican food!
What’s your favorite memory of life in Thailand?
My favorite memory so far has been Loy Krathong. In our town there is a huge parade through the center and our school was in the parade. The Thai teachers dressed us up in traditional clothes and our landlady, Lin, helped us make our own krathongs! The parade ended up being four hours of dancing, chatting, and drinking with our Thai teachers and it was a real bonding experience. Once we arrived at the town lake, we released our krathongs into the water, which was an amazing experience.
What do you like most about working for your school?
My school is very relaxed and lets the foreign teachers really work with the kids and befriend them. I love my students because they are so creative, smart, and funny, even though they can be a little too cheeky at times! The kids definitely remind me why I came to Thailand in the first place. It’s so rewarding to see them grasp a new concept and enjoy a game or pronounce a difficult word correctly.
What three things do you wish you would have known or brought with you before you arrived?
I wish I had known how to drive a moped or motorcycle! I’m teaching myself right now and it’s way harder than I thought it would be. I definitely should have learned more Thai before coming, but I know enough to get by now! I wish I had brought more shirts with sleeves. The temples are really big about women not showing shoulder. This should have been very obvious, and I did bring shirts that have sleeves, but most of my casual tops do not have them.
Did you have the opportunity to save any money? What percentage of your salary were you able to save each month?
Yes! I actually save quite a lot of my salary every month because I live in a very cheap part of Thailand. It also depends on how much you travel in a month, but the cost of living in my town is very low. At most, I my first month’s salary.