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Being a professional volunteer with Projects Abroad allowed me to see a side of Thailand that very few outsiders get to experience. It was my privilege not only to work in the schools, experiencing first hand the students' daily struggles to master English, but also to work with and help the teachers through conferences and meetings. My time in the schools was vital to knowing how to advise the teachers with whom I met. I was able to observe the challenges and rewards of daily interaction with the students, which proved essential in my work editing the new Phonics Curriculum. The teachers often are so unsure of themselves, perhaps because of a lack of training in English, but I am sure that the opportunity to work with the volunteers--both professional and teaching--will greatly increase their confidence and improve their teaching. All the teachers that I had the opportunity to meet at the three different schools I visited and the two teacher conferences I attended were extremely welcoming and very open to suggestion. It was very rewarding to learn from these teachers how they implemented new ideas in their classrooms and to collaborate with them on best practices for their students.
My time with Projects Abroad allowed me not only to experience a new cultures through living with my sweet and welcoming host family and using the weekends to explore the many fabulous sights around Krabi, it also gave me the opportunity to grow professionally by working with these teachers and the staff at Projects Abroad to adapt the ideas I use in my classroom and to work on improving the English instruction through the implementation of new curriculum. Working closely with the teachers, staff, and other volunteers was a fabulous experience, and I am very thankful to Projects ...
An interview with our inspiring teaching volunteer from France, Agathe Charbon
M: Why did you come to volunteer?
A: I come to volunteer to take a break from the materialistic and superficial world we are surrounded by. And to bring my help to others; I wanted to stop just thinking of me and to turn to other.
M: What are you planning to do after the project?
A: After this, I am spending time in France by the beach with all my family that I haven’t seen yet. Just relax and enjoy time shared with them.
M: What university do you attend?
A: I attend the ESAG Penninghen, a graphic design school in Paris.
M: What do you study?
A: I study graphic design.
M: What are you working on at your teaching project?
A: I am working on phonetics, vocabulary, adjective and building sentence.
M: What activity did you like the most?
A: I like imitating gestures, playing out experiences. It makes the kids laugh.
M: What is your most memorable experience?
A: I love how the kids are teaching me how to play their games and exchange bracelets.
M: What is your advice to future volunteers?
A: My advice for future volunteers is to plan out your everyday lessons and make sure that the kids enjoy it just as much as you do. Make it fun and be active!
M: What is the funniest situation you experienced in Thailand?
A: The funniest moment is when I would say “Be quiet” to the kids and they would laugh thinking I say “Buffalo”. I only know this later.
M: What do you love most about this experience?
A: What I enjoy the most is that we are independent; we learn new things and are surrounded by a different culture. We meet new people, live in a new place and you learn to GROW.
I am so proud to present a photography sent from the 1st Projects Abroad Thailand Photography Competition of the month of June.
Congratulations Helen Najjar!!
Helen, 18 from United States, volunteered from 20/5/2014 to 7/6/2014 in conservation project in Thailand.
When I first arrived in Thailand I was exhausted, a little nervous and very excited. I was in a new city, country and continent with next to no teaching experience under my belt. I'm happy to say I made the transition from my northern canadian home quite seamlessly. There was spicy food, nice beaches and great company, I couldn't really ask for much more.
I got to meet quite a lot of people during my time here due to starting my first week with the conservation part of Projects Abroad before beginning my teaching placement. Although there was already an established group, they welcomed me very nicely and I was able to see some of them again even after moving on to teaching.
The teaching was something I fell in love with on my first day. I would explain to friends and family back home just how cute the little kids could be, even if they didn't all listen to me at first. I was impressed with their eagerness to learn and understand english in such a small and understaffed school. They would constantly surprise me with both their skill level, and the compassion they showed each other. When playing football or just running around at lunch, anytime there was a kid hurt there were at least five kids trying to take care of them and do whatever they could to make them feel better.
Although school was fun, coming home each day was also very nice. I had a wonderful host family who wanted to do everything they could to make me feel comfortable and like one of the family. They took me to so many great places and were always concerned about whether my meal was good enough. Luckily I showed them pretty quickly that I would eat everything and I'm happy to say that in 5 weeks I never had a single meal I didn't like. I noticed improvements in their English as well as ...
Happy World Environment Day!
Conservation volunteers are at the Provincial Administrative Office presenting the kids about our diving to to clean marine debris, showing the greatest harm caused by human towards our environment and also giving away plants for the kids to plant and give shade to the earth.