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Rian Thai Kruu Cherry: Thai Casual Sentences

Rian Thai Kruu Cherry

Thai Casual Sentences…

Thai is a language that uses different words for formal and informal situations. The words we use can also show the relationship between people.

Today I will teach you how to make a sentence sound more casual, like a native speaker would say it. All of the sentences we learn today can be used with family and friends. Sound good? Ok, let’s begin!

1) I don’t want to bother you.

To bother
Formal: รบกวน
Informal: กวน


So to make it more casual, you can say “ฉันไม่อยากกวนคุณ” instead “ฉันไม่อยากรบกวนคุณ”. Anyway, if you want someone to do something for you and you want to start the sentence with “I don’t want to bother you, but..”, you can use the phrase “โทษนะ”, which is from ขอโทษนะ.


Sorry (excuse me)
Formal: ขอโทษนะ
Informal: โทษนะ


*to say นะ in this phrase, makes it sound more natural, in my opinion.

Example:

Sorry to interrupt, but this is very important.
โทษนะ แต่(เรื่อง)นี้สำคัญมาก

Sorry to interrupt, but there’s someone to see you.
โทษนะ แต่มีคนรอพบคุณอยู่

I don’t want to bother you, but can you open the window.
โทษนะ ช่วยเปิดหน้าต่างให้หน่อยได้ไหม

I don’t want to bother you, but can you help me with one thing.
โทษนะ คุณช่วยอะไรผมสักอย่างได้ไหม

Sorry if I come across as rude, but I’m a little confused.
โทษนะ แต่ฉันงงนิดหน่อยว่า…

2) No offense

You can start the sentences with “ไม่ได้ว่านะ” (no offense), when giving negative comments such as, “are you getting fat?!?” (I know it’s weird, but it is okay in Thailand).

Example:

No offense, but did you get fat?
ไม่ได้ว่านะ แต่แกอ้วนขึ้นเปล่าเนี่ย

No offense, but your boyfriend is ugly.
ไม่ได้ว่านะ แต่แฟนแกขี้เหร่อ่ะ

3) Can I ask you…?

To ask about personal information or sensitive details, you can start with a casual sentence “ถามอะไรหน่อย.”

Example:

Can I ask you something personal?
ถามอะไรหน่อย / ฉันถามอะไรหน่อย

The word “personal” is “เรื่องส่วนตัว.”

You don’t need to say “เรื่องส่วนตัว” before asking the question like “ฉันขอถามเรื่องส่วนตัวหน่อย.” If someone starts asking me questions with sentences like this, I will be very tense and won’t want to answer.

Moreover, casual sentences depend on your voice tone. I always use a voice like I am kidding or even ask with a whisper sound sometimes.

I hope all of these tips are useful for you.

One more thing I almost forgot to tell you. The secret of a casual sentence is a smile on your face. Don’t forget to SMILE! 

Download…

The pdf below has Thai script, transliteration, and English.

PDF (77kb): Rian Thai Kruu Cherry: Thai Casual Sentences

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Cat Cartoons Episode 130: Learn and Love the Thai Language

รู้รักภาษาไทย: Cat Cartoons…

เสียงเด็ก ๆ ร้องเพลง: รู้รักภาษาไทย
Sound of children singing: Learn and Love the Thai Language.

ผู้บรรยาย: ตอน เปรอะเปื้อน
Narrator: Episode – ‘Bpruh bpeuan’.

สีสวาด: เก้าแต้ม ไปทำอะไรมา เนื้อตัวเปื้อนไปหมด
Si Sawat: Kao Taem! What have you been doing? Your body’s all soiled with dirt!

วิเชียรมาศ: เก้าแต้มเนี่ยะ(นี่อ่ะ) ซนจริงจริ๊ง คงไปไล่จับหนูตรงที่รก ๆ หลังบ้านละซี่(สิ)
Wi-chian maat: Kao Taem here is extremely naughty! He’s probably been chasing after some mice in some messy spots behind the house!

เก้าแต้ม: แฮ่ะ ๆ ๆ ๆ (เสียงหัวเราะ) เดาเก่งนี่ ชั้น(ฉัน)วิ่งไล่หนูและจับหนูได้ด้วย แต่ต้องแลกกับเนื้อตัวเลอะเทอะเปอะเปื้อนหยั่งเงี้ยะ(อย่างนี้อ่ะ)
Kao Taem: Heh heh heh heh! Your guess was spot on. I’ve been chasing and catching mice, but at the expense of getting my body ‘Luh tuh’ ‘Bpuh bpeuan’ like this.

สีสวาด: เลอะเทอะแล้วอะไรอีกนะ พูดอีกทีซิ(สิ)
Si Sawat: ‘Luh tuh’ and what was it that came after that? Repeat it, already!

เก้าแต้ม: เลอะเทอะเปอะเปื้อน
Kao Taem: ‘Luh tuh’ ‘Bpuh bpeuan’.

สีสวาด: เก้าแต้มพูดคำควบกล้ำไม่ชัดอีกแล้ว
Si Sawat: Kao Taem is not pronouncing his consonant cluster properly, yet again!

วิเชียรมาศ: คำไหนล่ะ
Wi-chian maat: Which word is that?

สีสวาด: ก็คำว่า เปรอะเปื้อน ไง ไม่ใช่ เปอะเปื้อน
Si Sawat: Well, it’s the word ‘Bpruh bpeuan’, obviously! It should not be ‘Bpuh bpeuan’.

ผู้บรรยาย: เลอะเทอะเปรอะเปื้อน คำว่า เปรอะ ต้องออกเสียง ป ปลา ควบ ร เรือ ให้ชัดเจน
Narrator: The word ‘Bpruh’, in the phrase ‘Luh tuh’ ‘Bpruh bpeuan’, should be pronounced properly with a distinct ‘Bpor plaa’ – ‘ror reua’ consonant blend sound.

แมวทั้งสามตัว: แล้วพบกันใหม่นะครับบบ (ครับ)
All Three Cats: See you again next time!

เสียงเด็ก ๆ ร้องเพลง: รู้รักภาษาไทย
Sound of children singing: Learn and Love the Thai Language.

PDF Downloads…

Below is a pdf download (created by Catherine) to help with your studies. It has Thai script, transliteration, and English.

Cat Cartoons Episode 130: Conversation

The Cat Cartoon Series…

Original transcript and translation provided by Sean Harley. Transliterations via T2E (thai2english.com).

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Interviewing Thai Teacher: Kannaphat Saelee (Jan)

Interviewing Thai Teacher

What Makes a Good Thai Teacher?…

Welcome to the second post in the Thai Teacher Interview series. If you missed it, the first interview was with Yuki Tachaya (PickUp Thai Podcasts).

Note: At the end of each interview you can download the interview questions to ask Thai teachers of your own choosing.

Interviewing Thai Teacher: Kannaphat Saelee (Jan)…

Name: Kannaphat Saelee (Jan)Interviewing Thai Teacher
Professional name: Jan
Age range: 30 – 40
Location: Bangkok
Website: Study Thai
Facebook: Study Thai With Kru Jan
Skype: jankannaphat

How long have you been teaching Thai to foreigners?

Almost 7 years. I started in 2011 in Chiang Mai and moved to Bangkok in 2017.

What made you want to teach Thai?

I find teaching Thai to foreigners very challenging. Even though you’re a native speaker and speak perfect Thai, it doesn’t mean you can teach it to others. I have a good understanding of both English and Thai, not just the language but also the way both cultures think and interact . So I enjoy helping foreigners to understand the similarities and differences to bridge that cultural gap. And because I enjoy helping others see the connections, it never feels like work.

What qualifications do you have to teach the Thai language?

Apart from being a native speaker of the language, I also have a degree in linguistics. I’m officially trained and have worked in 2 licensed schools in Chiang Mai, teaching Thai as a foreign language. And with 7 years of experience under my belt, I am confident of my qualifications.

What student age brackets do you teach?

All ages, the youngest student I ever had was 8 and the oldest one was 80. Yes, 80! You can never be too young or too old. People often debate about the best time to learn a new language, and I always say the time is now.

What are the types of courses that you offer?

I offer:

1. Survival Thai ( 2-6 sessions)
2. Beginner Level (Beginner Level 1, 2)
3. Intermediate Level (Pre-Intermediate and Intermediate Level 1, 2)
4. Advanced Level (Pre-Advanced and Advanced Level 1, 2)
5. Reading & Writing Thai (15 – 20 sessions)
6. Customized Thai Lessons

Have you studied and/or lived abroad before?

Although I get asked many times whether I have studied or lived abroad before, I actually studied in Chiang Mai University and have always lived in Thailand my entire life. So, I jokingly tell my students if I can learn to speak English fluently growing up in Thailand, they have no excuse not to learn Thai!

Is your teaching approach more teacher centered or student centered?

Both. I always listen to my students’ requests and suggestions but I make the final decision on what is best for them. I pay attention to each student individually and see how they learn best. Each student requires a unique approach to learning. Some methods might work with some students, while others may not. And sometimes, students don’t know what they need most. So while I follow a specific course overall, each lesson is tailored to the individual student or class.

What are some of your favorite teaching methods?


I have seen so many learners fail in learning to read Thai or they find it’s extremely difficult to conquer. So, after having successfully taught many students to read Thai, I found it’s best to teach them for a shorter time with specific orders.

I designed a reading & writing course that will help students to learn Thai script in 30 hours within a 5-week period. It has worked really well so far. I was confident it would work from the beginning, but when I really started to see increased comprehension, I knew this unique approach was gold.

For conversational Thai, I sometimes take my students to a local coffee shop, restaurant or a market, so they can learn from using the language in everyday life. It’s relaxing and effective.

Do you use course books in teaching Thai?

I use books and handouts and online materials. I wrote my own books and all materials to use in my lessons.

What your thoughts about the use of transliteration in teaching Thai?

It’s not the best idea and could cause confusion. However, it’s useful for complete beginners. They just need to stop depending on it as soon as possible.

In your opinion, how important is reading and writing Thai in helping foreigners learn the language?

I think being able to read Thai script is essential in learning Thai and eventually mastering the language. The more interactions you have with the language the more likely it will stick. Also, Thai language is a phonetic language so learning how to read will help you better to pronounce and communicate with the locals.

I usually recommend students to learn to read Thai if they want to speak Thai well. Thai language is all about the pronunciation. With the romanized transliteration you can never learn the real sounds. It’s only close but not the same.

I wrote about the benefits of learning how to read and write Thai. You can find here: Five Reasons for Learning to Read and Write Thai.

Do you use technology in teaching Thai? If yes, what do you use?

Yes, I also offer lessons on Skype. I use google spreadsheet and online whiteboard as tools. In my classroom, I put all my flashcards on iPad, so I don’t have to carry the cards everywhere and it’s easy to share to my students. Furthermore, I put all my lessons + audio recordings on Dropbox so that my students have access and can download from anywhere.

What are some of the issues unique to a particular nationality in learning Thai that you have observed in your students?

Hmmm…. It seems to be harder to learn Thai for those who come from English speaking countries. Most of them only speak one language and learning your second language is harder than your third.

How do you help your students overcome those issues?

Since I have a good understanding of the English language, I show them how it works in English and how it works in Thai. I explain the similarities and the differences. It usually helps.

In your opinion, how important is learning about Thai culture in helping foreigners learn the language?

I think it’s the other way round, learning the language helps foreigners learn Thai culture. For example, we have many words with ใจ (jai) which means heart in Thai e.g. ใจดี ใจร้าย ใจร้อน ใจเย็น เข้าใจ เปลี่ยนใจ. We use the heart to understand and we (Thai people) would say “change the heart” as opposed to “change the mind”. Because ใจ (jai) is simply THAT important in Thai culture.

How do you assess whether or not your students understand what you are saying and/or teaching?

I give my students an evaluating exam from time to time to see their progress. Sometimes I just ask them if they understand and if they say they do, I ask them to explain back to me.

What do you do when it is obvious that your students do not understand what you are saying and/or teaching?

I explain again but in different ways or give them lots of examples. I always make sure they understand correctly.

How strict are you in respect of tones and/or vowel length?

Strict. All for their good. I correct them every time they say a word wrong, especially a super common word, until they get tired of that and finally remember the tones. I don’t mind doing it over and over.

What are your thoughts about beginners learning and using colloquialisms, slang and/or swear words when they speak Thai?

I always tell them to avoid using slang and swear words that they don’t fully understand. When you are not sure, don’t use it. Because it could offend people.

What have you found to be the most challenging aspects of teaching Thai?

Answering students questions. My students are from all over the world, with different backgrounds. They ask all sorts of questions related to the Thai language. Some questions you have never thought about before. But as a teacher, you should have a good answer for them. So, I find this challenging. It also determines whether they think you’re a good teacher or not because understanding their questions is important too.

What advice would you give to students of the Thai language?

Be patient with yourself but don’t wait until your Thai is perfect to speak Thai. Be comfortable making mistakes because that’s the best way to learn Thai. Try to use it in your daily life even when they speak back to you in English. Take the opportunity and get yourself fully immersed with the language if you’re in Thailand. Finally, practice, practice and practice.

Good luck!

Kannaphat Saelee (Jan),
Study Thai

Thai teacher interview questions…

The download has additional questions for you to pick and choose from – enough for everyone’s liking.

Download: Questions for potential Thai teachers

Watch this space for more Thai teacher interviews.

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Thai Lyrics Translated: Live and Learn (อยู่ที่เรียนรู้)

เพลง : Live and Learn (อยู่ที่เรียนรู้)
ศิลปิน : กมลา สุขโกศล (Kamala Sukosol)

เมื่อวันที่ชีวิต เดินเข้ามาถึงจุดเปลี่ยน
On the day we arrive at a crossroad in life.

จนบางครั้งคนเราไม่ทันได้ตระเตรียมหัวใจ
We may not have time to prepare our hearts

ความสุขความทุกข์ ไม่มีใครรู้ว่าจะมาเมื่อไหร่ จะยอมรับความจริงที่เจอได้แค่ไหน
Happiness or suffering: nobody knows when we’ll encounter it and to what extent we’ll be willing to accept the truths that we discover.

เพราะชีวิตคือชีวิต เมื่อมีเข้ามาก็มีเลิกไป
Coz life is what it is. Just as something can begin, so too can it end.

มีสุขสมมีผิดหวัง หัวเราะหรือหวั่นไหว เกิดขึ้นได้ทุกวัน
To be happy or to be disappointed, to laugh or to worry, these can happen everyday.

อยู่ที่เรียนรู้ อยู่ที่ยอมรับมัน ตามความคิดสติเราให้ทัน
It’s down to consciously learning and accepting things in time.

อยู่กับสิ่งที่มีไม่ใช่สิ่งที่ฝัน และทำสิ่งนั้นให้ดีที่สุด
Live with things as they are, not as you dream they should be, and do all those things the best that you can.

สุขก็เตรียมไว้ ว่าความทุกข์คงตามมาอีกไม่ไกล
Even when you’re happy, prepare yourself for the suffering that’d probably follow not too far behind.

จะได้รับความจริงเมื่อต้องเจ็บปวดไหว
So you’ll be well prepared when you need to face the suffering.

Stamp’s version: Live and Learn
Sek’s version: Live and Learn
Noi and Sek duet: Live and Learn
Pod Moderndog’s version: Live and Learn

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Cat Cartoons Episode 129: Learn and Love the Thai Language

รู้รักภาษาไทย: Cat Cartoons…

เสียงเด็ก ๆ ร้องเพลง: รู้รักภาษาไทย
Sound of children singing: Learn and Love the Thai Language.

ผู้บรรยาย: ตอน ถั่วพู – ใบพลู
Narrator: Episode – ‘Tua-poo’ – ‘Bai ploo’.

สีสวาด: วันนี้เรามาเล่นทายกันมั้ย(ไหม) วันก่อนเห็นพี่เก่งกับพี่ก้อยทายชื่อผลไม้กัน วันนี้เรามาทายชื่อผักกันดีกว่า
Si Sawat: Today, let’s play a word game, shall we? The other day, I saw Pee Geng and Pee Goi coming up with names of fruits. Today, let’s do the names of vegetables.

วิเชียรมาศ: เอาชื่อถั่วดีมั้ย(ไหม) มีหลายอย่าง
Wi-chian maat: Let’s go with the names of beans, shall we? There’re many types.

เก้าแต้ม: อ้ะ ก็ได้ ไม่รู้ว่าชั้น(ฉัน)จะตอบได้มั้ย(ไหม)เนี่ยะ(นี่อ่ะ)
Kao Taem: Ah! I don’t know if I’ll be able to come up with any, you know?!

สีสวาด: เรามาผลัดกันบอกชื่อถั่วกันทีละชื่อนะ
Si Sawat: Let’s each take a turn giving the name of a (type of) bean.

วิเชียรมาศ: ถั่วฝักยาว
Wi-chian maat: ‘Tua-fak-yaao’.

สีสวาด: ถั่วงอก
Si Sawat: ‘Tua ngok’

เก้าแต้ม: ถั่วพลู
Kao Taem: ‘Tua ploo’.

สีสวาด: เก้าแต้มพูดผิด ถั่วพลู ไม่มี มีแต่ ถั่วพู
Si Sawat: Kao Taem, you’ve said it wrongly. There’s no such word as ‘Tua ploo’. There’s only a ‘Tua poo’.

เก้าแต้ม: อ้าว ก็วันก่อนชั้น(ฉัน)เห็นป้าแม้นแกบอกหลานว่า ไปเก็บใบพลูมาให้ป้ากินกับหมากหน่อย ชั้น(ฉัน)ก็นึกว่า ถั่วพลู ก็ออกเสียงเหมือน ใบพลู ไม่ใช่หลอ(หรือ)
Kao Taem: Whaaat? Just the other day, I heard Paa Maen telling her nephew / niece / grandson / granddaughter to go and pick some ‘Bai ploo’-s for her to chew together with some ‘Maak’. So this made me think of ‘Tua ploo’. It should be pronounced like ‘Bai ploo’, shouldn’t it?

ผู้บรรยาย: ถั่วพู เป็นชื่อถั่วชนิดหนึ่ง ฝักมีครีบตามยาวสี่ครีบ ส่วน ใบพลู เป็นใบของไม้เถาชนิดหนึ่ง มีรสเผ็ดร้อน ใช้กินกับหมากและทำยาได้
Narrator: ‘Tua poo’ is the name of a type of bean. The pod has four wings running lengthwise whereas ‘Bai ploo’ is the leaf of a type of vine. It tastes hot and is chewed together with ‘Maak’. And it can be used for medicinal purposes.

แมวทั้งสามตัว: แล้วพบกันใหม่นะครับบบ (ครับ)
All Three Cats: See you again next time!

เสียงเด็ก ๆ ร้องเพลง: รู้รักภาษาไทย
Sound of children singing: Learn and Love the Thai Language.

Comments…

‘Tua-poo’ (ถั่วพู) means ‘winged bean’ (also known as ‘four-angled bean’ or ‘four-cornered bean’).

‘Bai ploo’ (ใบพลู) means ‘betel leaf’.

‘Tua-fak-yaao’ (ถั่วฝักยาว) means ‘yardlong bean’ (also known as ‘Chinese long bean’ or ‘snake bean’).

‘Tua ngok’ (ถั่วงอก) means ‘bean sprout’.

‘Maak’ (หมาก) means ‘areca nut’.

Many beginners translate ‘Tua’ (ถั่ว) wrongly as ‘nut’ when in fact it should be ‘bean’ (the RSD definition of ถั่ว is น. ชื่อพรรณไม้หลายชนิดหลายสกุลในวงศ์ Leguminosae ใช้ฝักหรือเมล็ดเป็นอาหาร เช่น ถั่วเขียว [ Vigna radiata (L.) R. Wilczek] ถั่วเหลืองหรือถั่วแระ [ Glycine max (L.) Merr.]).

PDF Downloads…

Below is a pdf download (created by Catherine) to help with your studies. It has Thai script, transliteration, and English.

Cat Cartoons Episode 129: Conversation

The Cat Cartoon Series…

Original transcript and translation provided by Sean Harley. Transliterations via T2E (thai2english.com).

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EXTENDED: PickupThai Podcast’s Songkran Sale

PickupThai Podcast

A HEADS UP! PickupThai Podcast’s website has been hacked so I’m running an emergency post to get the word out.

PickupThai’s website (www.pickup-thai.com) is temporarily inaccessible due to unexpected circumstances. However, you can still order podcasts (PickupThai Podcast) and request free samples by email.

Payments are accepted through Paypal and Thai bank transfer. The links to the podcasts will be sent to you by email to download from.

The Songkran Grand Sale – Buy Two Courses, Get One Course Free (all three courses for only $198 USD) is still running and has been extended until April 30th.

Should you have any questions, feel free to contact the admins at contact [@] pickup-thai.com or through their Facebook page: PickUpThai or Twitter account @PickupThai.

Yuki Tachaya and Miki Chidchaya

As their information is down as well, here’s a review of Green (intermediate) and Red (advanced), and an overview of Coconut (beginners):

Green and Red: Review: PickupThai Podcast by Yuki and Miki
Coconut: WLT’s 2016 Thai Language Giveaway: PickupThai Podcast

Good luck Yuki and Miki – your site is sure to be back soon!

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Pocket Thai’s Songkran Sale 2018

Pocket Thai

Introducing Pocket Thai…

Introducing Pocket Thai – WLT’s latest sponsor (see more about sponsoring / donating here). Pocket Thai’s Songkran sale runs from Thursday (April 12) to Monday (April 16), but first, here’s a bit about the app from the sponsor.

Pocket Thai…

In a market full of vocab memorization apps, Pocket Thai tries to do something new: teach the language from the ground up.

Pocket Thai is a Thai language learning program and culture guide for iOS and Android that takes you from zero Thai language experience up to the conversational level. This program prepares you for life, work, and travel in Thailand with easily to follow explanations of Thai grammar and culture.

Pocket Thai is designed for beginners and teaches you how to read and speak Thai with culture lessons and travel advice mixed in along the way. You can learn at your own pace and study from anywhere since there’s no internet connection required!

Quizzes at the end of the lessons are randomly generated so that you can repeat them and see new questions in a new order, which makes review much more interesting. Most importantly there are over 1200 audio files from both female and male native Thai speakers, which means that everyone that uses Pocket Thai will have a native speaker to model their speech after.

Pocket Thai’s Songkran Sale…


From April 12 to April 16 you can unlock the full 38 lesson curriculum of Pocket Thai Master for only $6.99 (usually $9.99).

Or if you only want to learn how to read Thai you can unlock the full 12 lesson Pocket Thai Reading for only $2.99 (usually $4.99).

Testimonials…

You can try the first five lessons for free to see if Pocket Thai works for you before you unlock the full program but if you want to see what other people think before you take the time to install it here are a few recent reviews:

The conversational tone of the app and sequential nature has really accelerated the learning process for me, and the supplementary educational elements concerning Thai customs, history, and other points of context show that the developer really understands that learning a new language is really inseparable from encountering a complete culture.
-mmrrkk (iOS user)

Checked out many apps but this is the first app which really takes you through lessons step by step… easy to follow and easy to learn.
-Ralf (Android user)

This app is absolutely excellent. I speak 4 other languages aside from Thai, and thus far this has been one of the best overall language apps I have seen. It’s extremely thorough and written in simple, non-technical language so even absolute beginners can make sense of a very difficult language. The quizzes at the end of each lesson are great too!
-Tokyo Teacher (iOS user)

Been in Thailand for 9 years. On and off learning Thai and this has been a great help. I feel it explained the rules to me very well and made it easier to read more!
-jr7diving (Android user)

Try it today…

To find links to the App Store and Google Play pages or learn more about Pocket Thai: Learn Thai.

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Language Exchange Chiang Mai: English, Thai, Chinese, German and more

Language Exchange Chiang Mai

Language Exchange Chiang Mai…

I first heard about the Chiang mai language exchange group back in 2015 from Daniel Styles. Since then Daniel relocated (but still shows up on occasion), the group was taken over by his mate Maik Cook, and they all shifted to CUBE7 after the closure of their former meeting place, FOCUS.

People from all over the world come to Language Exchange meetings every Wednesday and Saturday. The four most spoken languages are English, Thai, Chinese, and German but many more are represented at the group. Many people at Language Exchange are now friends, but everyone became friends the same way – after meeting and talking with people in the group.

The meetups are a perfect size, anywhere from 10 to 25 people each time. And while they welcome visitors who show up from elsewhere to practice their chosen languages, the meetings mostly consist of intermediate and advanced learners who live, work, or study in Chiang Mai.

The group meets all year around except for during Songkran and the Loy Krathong festival. And on top of their regular language meetups, there’s now a ‘Language Exchange Karaoke Night’ was well as a ‘Language Exchange Food Night’. Sounds like fun!

Their Language Exchange Chiang Mai Facebook group presently has around 2,760 members, comprised of those living in Chiang mai and those planning a holiday around a visit to the language exchange.

If you live in Chiang mai or will be there anytime soon, perhaps stop by?

FB: Language Exchange Chiang Mai
Time: 7pm, Wednesday and Saturday
Venue: CUBE7, Siri Mangkalajarn Rd Lane 7, Thesaban Nakhon Chiang Mai

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Cat Cartoons Episode 128: Learn and Love the Thai Language

รู้รักภาษาไทย: Cat Cartoons…

เสียงเด็ก ๆ ร้องเพลง: รู้รักภาษาไทย
Sound of children singing: Learn and Love the Thai Language.

ผู้บรรยาย: ตอน กันยา – กัญญา
Narrator: Episode – ‘Gan-yaa’ – ‘Gan-yaa’.

เก่ง: ก้อย มาดูรูปเพื่อน ๆ ของพี่นี่ซี่(สิ) คนเนี้ยะ(นี้อ่ะ)เค้า(เขา)ชื่อ กันยา เค้า(เขา)บอกว่าเค้า(เขา)เกิดเดือนกันยายน คุณพ่อคุณแม่เลยตั้งชื่อว่า กันยา แปลว่า นางงาม แล้วกันยาเพื่อนของพี่นี่ก็เป็นคนสวย น่ารักซะ(เสีย)ด้วย
Geng: Goi, come and take a look at this photo of my friend. This person here: her name is ‘Gan-yaa’. She said that she was born in the month of ‘Gan-yaa-yon’ (September), so her parents named her ‘Gan-yaa’, meaning ‘beauty queen’. And it just so happens that my friend ‘Gan-yaa’ is pretty. Lovable too.

ก้อย: ก้อยนึกออกแล้ว เพื่อนของก้อยคนนึง(หนึ่ง)ก็ชื่อ กัญญา แต่ไม่เห็นเขียนเหมือนเพื่อนพี่เก่งเลย เค้า(เขา)เขียนมี ญ หญิง สองตัว
Goi: I just remembered something. One of my friends is named ‘Gan-yaa’ but I don’t see it written the same way as your friend’s (name) is. Hers is written with two ‘Yor ying’-s.

เก่ง: กัญญา เขียน ญ หญิง สองตัวก็แปลว่า นางงาม เหมือนกัน แต่เป็นคำที่มาจากคนละภาษา
Geng: ‘Gan-yaa’, written with two ‘Yor ying’-s, has the same meaning of ‘beauty queen’ but comes from a separate and different language.

สีสวาด: ชื่ออาจเขียนต่างกัน แต่ออกเสียงเหมือนกัน เมื่อเป็นชื่อเฉพาะ ต้องดูให้ดีว่าชื่อของเค้า(เขา)เขียนอย่างไร และออกเสียงว่าอย่างไร ก็ต้องเขียนและออกเสียงตามนั้น
Si Sawat: Names may be written differently but are pronounced the same way. When it comes to someone’s name, you must pay particular attention to how his / her name is written and how it is pronounced, and make sure that you write and pronounce it accordingly.

ผู้บรรยาย: คำว่า กันยา และ กัญญา มีความหมายเหมือนกันคือ นางงาม สาวรุ่น สาวน้อย และเขียนได้สองอย่าง
Narrator: The words ‘Gan-yaa’ and ‘Gan-yaa’ have the same meaning, that is ‘beauty queen, girl, and young woman’ and can be written two different ways.

แมวทั้งสามตัว: แล้วพบกันใหม่นะครับบบ (ครับ)
All Three Cats: See you again next time!

เสียงเด็ก ๆ ร้องเพลง: รู้รักภาษาไทย
Sound of children singing: Learn and Love the Thai Language.

PDF Downloads…

Below is a pdf download (created by Catherine) to help with your studies. It has Thai script, transliteration, and English.

Cat Cartoons Episode 128: Conversation

The Cat Cartoon Series…

Original transcript and translation provided by Sean Harley. Transliterations via T2E (thai2english.com).

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Interviewing Thai Teacher: Yuki Tachaya – PickUp Thai

Interviewing Thai Teacher

What Makes a Good Thai Teacher?…

Welcome to the first post in the series! So just how did this series came about? Well, my foreign friends kept asking me to refer Thai teachers who’s skills looked good, so I scanned social media to find possible candidates for consideration.

Soon enough I realised that my friends needed additional help so I came up with questions to put to the teachers. Of course there’s more to it but that’s the series in a nutshell.

Note: At the end of each interview you can download the interview questions to ask Thai teachers of your own choosing. Good luck and happy hunting!

Interviewing Thai Teacher: Yuki Tachaya from PickUp Thai Podcasts…

Teacher: Yuki Tachaya
Age range: 30-35
Sex: Female
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Website: PickUpThai
Facebook: PickUpThai
YouTube: Yuki Tachaya
Twitter: @pickupthai
Products: PickupThai Podcasts (Learn real Thai the super fun way)
E-book for learning Thai The Unforgettable Day of Forgetful Tamago
PickUpThai merchandise for learning Thai (T-shirts, mugs, phone cases & more).

How long have you been teaching Thai to foreigners?

Exactly 10 years. I’ve been teaching since 2008.

What made you want to teach Thai?

I started from teaching English to Thai people. After doing that for a few years, I tried doing the opposite, teaching Thai to English-speaking people. And after having given a few classes, I discovered that I was pretty good at explaining things to people and helping them to understand, especially things that most Thai people know how to use but can’t explain. And while my students enjoyed studying with me, I also enjoyed teaching them. I then realized this is what I want to continue doing for a long time!

What motivates you to continue teaching Thai?

I myself am also a language learner. I picked up English and Japanese quite fast without living abroad. I know how to be successful at learning foreign languages and I want to use my experience and expertise to help people to be successful at learning Thai with the methods I used to learn foreign languages. I don’t just offer private lessons to individual students, but I also constantly post free and fun lessons on my website as well as videos on Youtube in order to share my knowledge with Thai learners. Most importantly, my sister and partner, Miki Chidchaya, and I have also developed our own Thai teaching/learning method through our self-made Thai learning materials PickupThai Podcast in order to reach out to a larger group of students and help more people to be successful by learning realistic, authentic, practical Thai the fun way. I don’t want to keep the knowledge to myself and waste my skills, so I want to keep teaching Thai in many different forms for as long as I can.

What qualifications do you have to teach the Thai language?

I’m a native speaker of the language and I have a liberal arts degree, with an English major from Chulalongkorn University. I’ve also completed a research student course in Second Language Acquisition at Tokyo University of Foreign Studies. And I have first-hand experiences learning foreign languages so I understand what a learner has to go through (all the difficulties and obstacles). I’ve been in their shoes and I know what they have to do in order to be successful.

What student age brackets do you teach?

The youngest student I’ve taught was 15 years old, and the oldest 67.

What nationalities have you taught?

More than 70% of the students I have had are from the United States and Japan but I’ve also had students from other countries, such as the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Holland, Germany, Sweden, China, Taiwan, and Bolivia.

What percentage of your students are beginner, intermediate, advanced?

50% beginner, 30% intermediate, 20% advanced.

Apart from Thai, what other languages do you use to teach Thai?

English and Japanese.

What is your level of proficiency in those languages?

Fluent.

Have you studied and/or lived abroad before?

I lived in Japan for two years (I passed the highest level of Japanese proficiency test and was awarded the Japanese Government scholarship before I had been there). I’ve also lived in United States for about five years. Currently, I spend half of my time in Thailand and half in the United Kingdom. (I could speak English fluently before I had left Thailand for the first time.)

Is your teaching approach more teacher centered or student centered?

Student centered. This is what I care about the most when it comes to teaching private lessons. Classes will only work when tailored to each student’s goals and needs.

What are some of your favorite teaching methods?

For students who already understand and speak some Thai, I love to do a free conversation with them on the topics of the their interest. I try to let my students talk as much as they can. I mostly ask questions to encourage them to speak. And I generally correct their mistakes made during the conversation at the end of the class so they know what’s the correct and natural-sounding way to say and pronounce things. I always focus on helping my students to sound natural like native speakers rather than textbooks.

What is your philosophy regarding the four skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing?

Learning a foreign language is all about imitating native speakers. So, it’s important to listen a lot before learning to speak and read a lot before learning to write. That way, you will be confident in what you put out. Never stop practicing listening and reading. It’s so important in helping you to become a fluent speaker and a good writer as well. On the other hand, you also should not wait until the day your Thai is perfect to start speaking or writing. It’s OK to try and make some mistakes. After a few times, you will learn the correct things and won’t repeat them.

If you do not use course books, what do you use?

PickupThai Podcast, the materials my partner and I developed ourselves because we couldn’t find any textbook that teaches Thai the way we think is the most effective – teaching the real unaltered Thai, the exact language that we Thai people speak and use, from fun stories and entertaining resources. We learn the best from what we’re interested in or enjoy. Most people give up too soon, because they lack or lost interest in their learning. We believe that it’s very important to create a fun learning process in order to help students achieve the most effective results and become successful.

What system of transliteration do you use?

The Paiboon system, just because we think it’s the one that Thai learners are most familiar with.

In your experience what, if any, are the shortcomings of that system?

The system includes some uncommon characters that aren’t in the English alphabet, although they’re pretty common in IPA (international pronunciation alphabet), so quite a few people don’t know how to read or pronounce them. For certain vowels, short and long vowels are also not differentiated so the pronunciation could be inaccurate.

What are your thoughts about the use of transliteration in teaching Thai?

It works for those who want to come to Thailand for a short period of time and only want to know how to say basic phrases to get by on their trip. For people who want to take Thai studies seriously and really want to come live in Thailand long-term, knowing how to read Thai script is a must.

In your opinion, how important is reading and writing Thai in helping foreigners learn the language?

Since there are many different transliteration systems, every time they start using a new book, they’ll have to relearn how to read. This could be confusing and unnecessarily time-consuming. Knowing how to read Thai script could help you to pronounce words more accurately. But the thing that makes the biggest difference is the fact that every single thing apart from Thai language textbooks is written in Thai script. So a person who knows how to read Thai can learn and practice Thai from any resources they could find. This gives them a huge advantage and helps them to progress much faster.

Ideally, when should foreigners start to learn how to read and write Thai?

It all depends on your goal. If you plan to live in Thailand, you should start learning how to read and write as soon as possible. But if you’re just learning Thai to be able to connect with the locals on your vacation, then there might not be a need to know how to read at all, especially if you have a short amount of time to learn to speak, you definitely should spend your time learning conversation instead. But even if you decide to learn Thai script, you can do that while also learning conversation. There’s no need to wait until you can read to start learning to speak. This is what I usually do with my students. We do both simultaneously and transition from transliteration to Thai script whenever the student is ready.

What do you believe is the hardest subject matter to teach in the Thai language?

Ending particles because they don’t exist in English, yet they are such an important characteristic of the Thai language. Thai people use them all the time, at the end of most sentences. There’s no way to ignore them. And explaining how to use each one is quite challenging.

What is your philosophy in respect of teaching vocabulary?

I only teach vocabulary from context. That way, learners will know how to apply the words in real conversation. And I don’t believe in rote-memorization. I also don’t think that it’s important to remember all the vocabulary words you learn the first or second time you look at them. In real life, when you hear the words you have learned over and over again, you will naturally remember them without using things like flashcards. And just by memorizing words without applying, you will soon forget them anyway. If you learn a word once, next time you see or hear it, you may not remember it yet and that’s completely fine and totally normal. After you have heard it ten or fifteen times, you will naturally remember it. Language learning is all about repetition, not memorization.

How do you assess whether or not your students understand what you are saying and/or teaching?

My classes are very interactive and engaging. I always ask my students to produce sentences using the vocabulary words, phrases or grammar structures that they’ve learned, and not just listen to me. So it’s quite clear and easy to know if they understand something or not from their output.

What do you do when it is obvious that your students do not understand what you are saying and/or teaching?

I always make sure that my students truly understand the information before moving on to the next lesson. I won’t be satisfied and let them move on until I make sure they know how to apply their knowledge in real usage. I don’t mind repeating things over and over at all. It’s very important that they learn, even if it takes time or even if we have to go slowly or go back to the previous lesson. Because there’s no point in reaching the last lesson and finishing a book if the student can’t really use what they have learned.

Ideally, when should an absolute beginner begin to speak Thai?

As soon as day one! There’s no reason to delay speaking Thai. You don’t need to wait until you’re fully confident and certain you won’t make mistakes. In fact, learning from mistakes is an excellent way to progress. But always keep listening to native speakers to learn the right information because after a while, you should know how to speak correctly and stop making the same old mistakes.

How do you get your students to use Thai?

I always encourage my students to practice composing sentences using words and grammar structures that they’ve learned and focus on letting my students talk as much as they can during the class, instead of me talking. On top of that, I usually let students who can speak Thai to speak as much as they can, even though they’re not fluent. And outside of the class, I also encourage them to find every opportunity to talk to any Thai friends they have, whether in real life or online.

How strict are you in respect of tones and/or vowel length?

Generally, I’m quite strict. I always correct my students’ tones and vowel length if they mispronounce, especially the words of which the meaning would change if pronounced incorrectly. Some words are more acceptable to let slide, but the pronunciation of some can be crucial to understanding.

What are your thoughts about beginners learning and using colloquialisms, slang and/or swear words when they speak Thai?

For colloquialisms and slang words, they should understand all of the words we use and know how to speak like we do. If Thai people use certain words, there’s no reason for them not to use them. For swear words, it’s different. Because not everyone swears. Some people swear less than others. Some don’t swear at all. So if they don’t swear in their language, they shouldn’t do it in Thai either. With that being said, I encourage them to learn the meanings of the words so that they understand what the words mean when they hear them but they don’t need to use them.

What are your thoughts about beginners using ภาษาวิบัติ or ‘social media Thai’?

It comes and goes with time. It doesn’t last forever. Although a lot of words don’t sound very proper and rather annoying, they do add some fun to the conversation and help people express feelings.

What advice would you give to students of the Thai language?

Practice listening and reading as much as you can. The more information you gain, the more you will be able to put out. There’s no shortcut to success. Learning a language takes time. But you won’t be discouraged if you enjoy your journey. Try to do everything you like in the language you’re learning if possible. If you like cooking, instead of watching a video teaching how to cook in English, watch ones in Thai. If you’re a movie lover, instead of watching Hollywood movies, watch Thai ones. If you like novels, find ones in Thai that you enjoy. Basically, do everything you like in Thai whenever possible. You learn the best when you’re not learning. Last but not least, if you find learning from real-life materials too difficult, PickupThai Podcast can be a good start. It’s the next best thing. Try free samples on our website and you’ll know that learning a language can be so much fun!

Yuki Tachaya
PickUpThai Podcasts

Thai teacher interview questions…

The download has additional questions for you to pick and choose from – enough for everyone’s liking.

Download: Questions for potential Thai teachers

Watch this space for more Thai teacher interviews.

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