Tips for Thai Learners of English

Tips for Thai Learners of English.
Thai people study English for many years at school but are still afraid to speak English with foreigners. Often this is because they are afraid to make grammar mistakes or pronunciation mistakes. so here are a few tips for Thai learners of English to overcome these barriers.
1. Speak, Speak and Speak
This may sound silly but it is the ONLY way to master a language. Thai people tend to be good at grammar and writing because they have studied English language in school for so many years. Unfortunately they don’t speak English well because they don’t practice speaking in class and are afraid to make mistakes when speaking to foreigners.I am sure if you ask Tiger Woods how he learned to play golf he wouldn’t say “Well, I read a lot of books and then went out and played”.
He would probably say that he practiced and continued practicing for several hours a day and for many years. It is the same with speaking English. Speak as much English as you possibly can and don’t worry about making mistakes. You will find that you make fewer and fewer mistakes as time goes by.
2. Listen to as much English as possible.
Listen to songs, listen to movies, listen to the news in English and listen to foreigners speaking. Maybe you won’t understand all of what they say because of the speed at which foreigners speak and maybe they have strong accents but keep listening. Don’t give up.There are many many websites dedicated to teaching English and a large portion of them have downloadable audio files or files for listening online. Find some that are at the right level for you and soon you will be improving your listening abilities.
Students who attend my classes will receive links to many of these websites but I am sure you can search Google and find some for yourselves.
3. Your grammar will improve automatically.

By listening to native English speakers regularly you will be able to hear some of your own mistakes.

A good example of this is getting the position of adjectives and nouns correct. In Thai language the noun comes before the adjective whereas in English the adjective comes first. So the Thai expression “ผู้หญิงสวย” is NOT “girl beautiful” in English but “beautiful girl“. If you listen to English often you will hear many expressions again and again and will soon stop making mistakes.

4. Think in English

Try not to translate. This is especially important in writing but I’ll post more about that on another page. Learn as many common English expressions as possible and use them.

An example: Many Thai people say something like “I am older than you, two years” which is taken from a direct translation of Thai “ผมแก่กว่าคุณ 2 ปี”  In English, comparisons have a definite form. “I am two years older than you“.

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