Teaching English Project (Surin)
Volunteer as an English teacher in stunning Thailand!
- Share your love of the English language
- Get real world experience working in a classroom
- Work alongside fellow educators
- Volunteer abroad safely & affordably
Join our volunteer teaching program and teach English to friendly children in the rural Surin province in NE Thailand. As a volunteer teacher, you will have the opportunity to teach in orphanages, primary schools & secondary schools, as well as teaching children with special needs.
Whether you’re on a gap year, presently studying, a mature volunteer or looking for an alternative holiday, you can make a real difference as a volunteer teacher. Our teaching volunteers get opportunity to work in different environments such as primary schools and secondary schools (on request). They also have the opportunity to help children with special needs. Unlike schools in the west there are no special classes for children with learning difficulties. You may encounter challenges when volunteering, but the rewards will outweigh any difficulties.
By becoming a volunteer teacher you will give rural Thai children the opportunity to learn English with a native speaker. A competence in English opens so many more doors later in life. With tourism the number 1 industry in Thailand and many leading international companies now located here, a competency in both written and spoken English is essential.
Do something amazing and volunteer to teach and help Thai children prepare for a better future.
Please note school holidays in Thailand runs from March 18 to April 26 and from September 16 to October 25. The project will be unavailable during this time.
Volunteer English teachers in Thailand must have fluent English skills. Though no teaching experience or skills are needed, it is beneficial to have taught or trained others. Volunteers are expected to be flexible, patient and possess a passion and love for children.
Working as a volunteer in the Teaching English Project in Thailand, you will teach from 9am to 3.30pm – approximately 6 and 1/2 hours each day, Monday through Thursday.
Additional information on schedule, food, room, field support
Most volunteer work is 4 days a week (Monday-Thursday). You and your fellow volunteers will have the long weekend to explore locally or further afield. Travelling and experiencing Thailand's beauty is all part of the volunteer experience. Our staff will help you organize your free time or end of placement travel. Come to Thailand, volunteer, travel and have an amazing time. Whilst in Surin, volunteers live in one of several shared houses. The houses are all located very close to each other and within a very short walk of Surin's excellent amenities including restaurants, supermarkets, shops, internet café's, ATM's, pharmacies, launderettes and much more. Each house has several twin-shared bedrooms, a basic but fully functional kitchen, bathrooms with hot showers and shared communal areas both in and outdoor. The houses are in safe and well-lit locations of Surin. Furthermore, our office and accommodation is located just 50 meters away and the team is on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Transport to and from the location is provided for you and included in the overall placement fee. In addition to your transport, a member of our team who will also help to translate your conversations and questions and will accompany you each and every day on your placement.
Meals are not included in the placement fee to give you the opportunity to eat what and when you want too. Food in Thailand, particularly outside of the major cities, is plentiful and very low cost. There are also many western options easily available should you wish to try a taste of home! For those of you who like to cook, our team will also arrange a couple of evenings to teach you how easy it can be to make your own tasty Thai treats.
During the project, volunteers will have the chance to live together in the home of the village elder and his family. You will get to experience rural Thai living firsthand. Wake up early to help prepare breakfast, give alms to the monks as they pass through the village, help out with community tasks and generally discover what life is like living as a Thai.
A coordinator and translator accompany volunteers in Surin every day while they are at their project. While we encourage the volunteers to create their own daily schedule for the children, our coordinators are all very experienced and can assist in preparations and schedule planning. We also supply all transport to and from the project location.
Please provide a typical day schedule in this project.
The project day is from 9.00am – 3.00pm. However this will be subject to your teaching timetable that will be given to you during your orientation. You can expect to teach an average of 4 hours each day with the remainder allocated to lesson planning.
Where do I stay? How far is the project from the accommodation? How do I commute every day?
Accommodation is included throughout your stay with us. Your orientation weekend will be spent at a local Guest House on Khao San road in bangkok. Rooms are basic but comfortable:
- Twin / Triple Share basis
- Warm shower,
- Western toilet
- En-suite Bathroom
- Security Deposit Box at Reception
- WI-Fi (100THB a day)
- 24 Hour Reception
- Buffet Breakfast Included
- Computer Terminals in lobby.
While in Surin you will stay in one of two shared houses with other volunteers The houses are comfortable Thai style homes rented from the local community.
- Shared Dormitory Style Rooms with bedding.
- Shared Bathrooms with Warm/cool shower & western toilet. (Toilets need to be flushed manually by pouring water from a nearby container. Please put toilet tissue in the bins provided so as to avoid blockages)
- Working Kitchen with Utensils, cutlery, kettle, Gas Hob, Refrigerator, kettle
- Lounge Area
- Free Wi-Fi. (Please note, internet access can be temperamental in rural Thailand)
- Fan -Cooled
- Mosquito Nets/ Mosquito Mesh Windows
The houses are located a short walk from the Local Office and very close to amenities such as ATMs, cafes, restaurants and supermarkets.
You will be picked up by Song Taew (Typical Thailand public transport – pickup trucks with covered seating) All drivers are licensed and vehicles carefully vetted before use. The journey to the childcare center will take approximately 20-30minutes.
What is the name of the school I would be placed?
We work with various schools within the area and frequently receive request from additional schools for volunteers. Please note that we respond to the needs of the community as they develop so for the most accurate information of which school you’ll be placed please contact our in country team once you apply
What is the age range of the students in the school?
We work primarily with primary schools and teach children ages 5-11.
How many students are in the school? How many of them are in each class?
Some of the rural village schools can number 100-300 children while the larger inner city schools will have many more. On average class sizes are quite large, approximately 30-40 children per class.
Will I be handling the classes on my own or will there be someone assisting me while teaching?
Where possible you will teach in small group of 2-4 teachers. You’re coordinator will also be on hand to assist in class room with translation when needed. Your coordinator will help you plan your lessons and support you in the classroom throughout your teaching experience.
Do they have teaching curriculum?
The children have a set government curriculum taught by their Thai English teachers. However the Schools would rather that volunteers focus on speaking and communication. This provides scope for volunteers to be creative and design their own lesson plans. Your coordinator can help you pick suitable topics and assist you with planning. For those who would rather follow a structured program, our local office has adopted the Speak First Curriculum, a resource that is freely available on http://www.mes-english.com/ .
Do I need to bring teaching materials? Or does the school have teaching materials which I can use?
We encourage our volunteers to donate their own materials so as to limit the impact on school resources. Your coordinator can help your source all necessary material locally and can facilitate photo-copying and printing for you.
Is teaching available all-round the year? When will it close for how long?
The School will be CLOSED for all of October and again for 2 months during April and May. These are the two major school holidays in Thailand.
Please note that over the Christmas and December/January New Year period our local teams will be on annual leave and projects will be closed for 1 week.
If you are wishing to volunteer during this time please make an enquiry to confirm whether the project will be available.
Any important information you want to share about this project.
English is a very important subject in Thai schools and forms part of the core curriculum. Children who develop their English language skills have a huge advantage moving into higher education or finding employment. Historically the Thai school system put emphasis on complex and often impractical grammar exercises. However Thai schools are now appreciating the contribution of native English speaking teachers more and more as the focus shifts towards communication and practical usage. Sadly many rural schools do not have the funding to hire full- time native English speakers so are grateful for the support from volunteers. In exchange, you will have a memorable time learning about rural Thai culture and the challenges that Thai teachers face. You will also meet so of the most charming and hardworking students ever!
The focus of your classes will be communication and encouraging the children to have fun learning English. You will be responsible for planning your own lessons and will be provided a range of topics to choose from. Don’t worry you’ll have plenty of time to get prepared and will be given advice and lesson materials to help you with your planning.
The Surin Teaching program is an exciting opportunity to experience life in a rural Thai school. You will be supported by a bilingual coordinator and working in small groups you will plan and teach English lessons for students’ aged 5 -16 in local schools. Your coordinator will give you full details of your timetable and school location during orientation.