Monday, January 4, 2010

Thai Lessons:

My Thai teacher and her son, who came along to the class with his Mom and kept grinning behind his hand as I murdered his language.

On Monday afternoons after I get home from teaching school, I have Thai lessons. Now I'm not making excuses (well, actually, I am) but after frying in the heat through three classes, Grades 7 and 9, plus my challenging Naughty Boys (and dancing hula again, besides!), my brain is only operating on 2 of 4 cylinders. (If that.)

My Thai teacher (I will tell you her name once I've got it right) does not seem to realize that "I am not fully functional."

She is the soul of enthusiasm and cheerfulness as she introduces about 50 - 60 new vocabulary words (or more) and then expects me to use them in a sentence. Or a question. Or a paragraph. All in the same lesson.

While remembering which word takes what tone.

Thai does not have tenses, as in verb tenses. But they do have five tones and something called classifications. And don't ask me to explain classifications because...well, I haven't the slightest idea what they are. But you tack them onto the ends of certain words. And there are lots of them. And I may have to move to Thailand and live here ten years before I begin to understand them.

I can't even remember the words, let along the tones or the classifications. It doesn't help that Tinu CAN speak whole paragraphs while I frantically page through my notes looking for the word we learned 10 minutes ago that I have already forgotten.

My Thai teacher is so sweet. So understanding. So kind...So politely exasperated whilst trying not to show it. (Bet she doesn't know the word "whilst." Hah!)

But hey, I came here to teach English, right? Not to learn Thai. I am not sure I can do both but I'm giving it my best shot. And when I get home and impress you with all my Thai, you will have no idea whether I'm using the correct tone or not, now will you?


  1. wowzers!!! i wouldnt be able to wrap my brain around it either! tough stuff...good luck!

  2. Does learning Thai make Hawaiian lessons from KR sound easy?? jan

  3. Better not try using any of these new Thai words in the next scrabble match! Or I'm going back to the scientific abbreviations! :)