As English teachers, we meet many different people who come to us wanting to learn English for a whole range of reasons. Some people want help preparing for exams, others want to improve their career prospects, to prepare for university or an international school, others just want to be able to communicate with people from all around the world, and in an international city like Bangkok that alone can be a great motivation! We know what our students want and we do our best to give them what they require. But we don’t always find out how things turned out. Today we’re going to hear from a former English language student, Poom, from Thailand. His path led him to study at The University of Manchester, England. We’ll ask him about his English learning experience:
Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
Yes, my name is Poom, I’m 28 years old, I come from Chiang Mai in the north of Thailand.
Why did you study English?
I studied English because I wanted to study a Master’s Degree at The University of Manchester.
What do you do now?
I work as an Air Steward for Thai Airways.
How has English been of benefit to you?
It was really important for me, since I was going to live in England for two years. Learning English to a high level made me confident speaking to people from England and people from other countries and helped me be successful at an English university. It is also a requirement for my job.
What did you enjoy about studying English?
I liked the activities and games mostly. In my normal school we just did grammar and went through a book. But in language school we played games and did lots of fun activities, which helped me remember things because I enjoyed doing it. It was like a competition, and it made us all try to learn better.
What did you find hardest about learning English?
Grammar. English grammar is very different to Thai grammar. In Thai there are no tenses, but English has so many!
Why would you recommend people study English?
People should study English because it is an international language. Anywhere you go you need to be able to speak English. When you travel, if you can speak English it will be a lot easier. Even in your job, if you have to speak to foreigners, you need to speak English. So these days I think it’s very important.
What is one of your favourite experiences studying English?
Making new friends from all around the world. Last year I went to Japan to meet a friend I first met studying English at a language school. We have been in touch ever since. I have made many friends from different countries thanks to being able to speak English!