Thailand

Applications for Thailand PY22 are now closed!

Tentative Program Dates: June 27 - August 5

Orientation

June 27 - July 1

Phuket

Closing Ceremony

August 5

TBD

Quick Facts

  • Location: Provinces of Nakhon Sawan and Phichit
  • Language Requirement: None
  • Setting: Both rural and urban
  • Duration: 6 weeks
  • Volunteers: 4-10 Volunteers
  • Living Conditions: Relatively modern

PROGRAM STRUCTURE

Volunteers will arrive 1-2 days prior to the start date of orientation to ensure that any and all health requirements are met before departing to host communities. During orientation we will be learning all about Thai culture, norms, and expectations necessary for teaching in Thailand. There will be opportunities to explore locally and the many sites of natural beauty that Phuket has to offer after each orientation session. We will acquire lesson planning and teaching skills through lecture, collaboration, and reflection together. Our work during orientation will be aimed to ensure your success in the classroom and develop your teaching pedagogy.

After orientation in Phuket, volunteers will travel to their teaching location and teach for five weeks. Volunteers may meet after two weeks for an opportunity to swap stories, teaching ideas and reflect on current teaching practices with fellow volunteers virtually or in-person locally, depending on the ever-changing health concerns of our host community.

The program will then conclude with a one day closing session. Closing session is a mandatory session that is an opportunity to reconnect with other volunteers, wrap up their time in Thailand and provide feedback to the program they have participated in. After the wrap-up meeting, volunteers are free to go.

The Ideal Volunteer:

  • Flexible: volunteers will face unexpected challenges and obstacles teaching and living abroad.
  • Outgoing: taking the initiative to begin an interaction with members within the local community first, without being prompted to do so
  • Open-minded: living conditions, culture and traditions are very different from the U.S. or UK
  • Independent: volunteers are responsible for teaching full lessons by themselves without supervision or guidance
  • Host Community

    Volunteers will be staying primarily in Phichit and Nakhon Sawan, two neighbouring provinces in North Central Thailand approximately 210 miles (or a 4 hour drive) north of Bangkok. The provinces are made up of rural towns and villages. The capital of Nakhon Sawan is a bigger city with more facilities. Most have paved, pot-holed, roads but lack infrastructure. Both provinces are located on swampland, so be prepared for mosquitoes, lizards and all kinds of bugs. Volunteers should prepare to bring their own bug spray as it tends to be more expensive in-country. Malaria is not a problem, but certain diseases should be vaccinated against before travel - see your physician or a travel vaccine specialist before departure, and contact your Program Director.

    All houses will have running water but might not have automatic flushing toilets. Most houses will have air conditioning but you should be prepared for not having access to air conditioning. Internet should be accessible from all houses and/or schools, but not convenient to Western standards. Host families are very hospitable and host communities are very friendly. Do not be surprised if your hosts treat you like an extension of the family. Most hosts are Buddhist and may participate in religious ceremonies. Weather is humid with intense rains, as the wet season starts in June. No need to worry, it is not as dreadful as it sounds! Volunteers should remember to bring comfortable and breathable clothes as they will be sweating frequently.

    Teaching

    The teaching situation will vary for each individual school and for each volunteer. Volunteers will be teaching at public schools during the normal school year in Thailand. Volunteers may be teaching at elementary, middle or high schools, or a combination of all. Ages may range quite a lot, from kindergarten to high school and even adults. Volunteers might find one class they have prepared for cancelled without notice and they might be asked to teach an entirely different class. This requires flexibility and patience from the volunteer. Class size may also vary, ranging from eight to twenty or more individual students. Every school will have basic supplies such as whiteboards and markers. Most schools even have small TV’s with HDMI ports for laptops and powerpoints as well as projectors.

    However, it is important not to completely rely on having these materials at all times due to the variable teaching schedule volunteers are likely to have. Volunteers are encouraged to speak English as much as possible and to encourage students to try to speak English.

    Service Project

    The service project is a requirement that includes each volunteer teaching an after school program. The program may range from 3-5 hours per week. For example, one volunteer taught how to play a piano melody on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays after school for one hour each day, others have planted trees or taught dancing classes. The after school program may range from teaching extra English lessons after school, teaching your favorite sport, or doing anything else that helps the local community.

    Some Awesome things about Thailand!

  • Teachers are held in very high regard. Volunteers are treated with respect by students and coworkers.
  • The Thai people have widely embraced the very relaxed 'sabai-sabai' lifestyle, which means that everything is chilled.
  • Food is cheap and some of the best food you will ever eat. You will not go hungry!
  • Thailand is a monarchy, and the whole country adores and respects their king to the extent that he is considered an 'Earth God.' Visitors to this country are expected to show respect to the royal family.
  • "555" means lol in Thai.
  • meet your program director, Alex Armstrong!

    Alex Armstrong is a 3rd and 4th grade teacher fresh from his Masters in Education from UC Santa Cruz. He first joined LE when studying for his Bachelor's degree in Politics. Alex served as both a volunteer and as a Program Director in the past for LE Thailand. Alex hopes to continue to spread the word and mission of LE while serving as the Program Director for PY22. 

    Interested applicants can contact Alex at thailand@learningenterprises.org

    Check out Thailand's Addendum and Budget!