WOU-ing Thai students with fun ways to learn English

Some 20 Thai students from Sri Songkram Wittaya School, Thailand had an unforgettable learning experience immersing themselves in a week-long English language programme at our beautiful seaside main campus recently.

The 26-hour language workshop that ran from 14 March 2023 to 20 March 2023 was organised by WOU’s School of Education, Humanities and Social Sciences (SEHS). It aimed to provide the students, all in Form Two, with opportunities to enhance their English language skills which are essential for their daily interactions and social activities.

Guided by the capable hands of six academics from the Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in English Studies (BAES) programme, the workshop commenced with a ‘Get-to-know Malaysia’ ice-breaking session followed by activities that emphasise the development of good communication skills.

Showing off their name tags on the workshop's first day.

Throughout the programme, the students were exposed to different genres with tasks expertly designed to make mastering the four language skills – listening, speaking, reading, writing – fun and interactive. Authentic and real-life examples were used during the sessions, allowing the students to put their skills into practice. Among the activities lined up were the Alphabet Scavenger Hunt and Nature Story Writing.

Dean of SEHS, Assoc Prof Dr Thomas Chow said, “Mastering the English language is a must and the most effective way to do so is by using the language daily.”

Dr Chow imparting some nuggets of wisdom.

“Students always find hands-on experience and games to be fascinating, so we design activities that require them to tap into their senses, creativity and technology,” explained Arathai Din Eak, Programme Lead of BAES.

She added, “Teaching Thai students English is different from teaching Malaysian students because the Thais speak English as a foreign language. It is definitely a good opportunity for us to put theory into practice.”

Showing off their creative side.

Prapatson Iemwieng, an English Language teacher from Wittaya School, expressed her gratitude to WOU for its warm and gracious hospitality in hosting her students.

“I am happy to see my students learn not only English but also Malaysian culture through this programme. I hope we can keep in touch and perhaps collaborate again on a similar programme for different groups of students next year,” she remarked.

The students presenting their nature-inspired story.

The students’ joy and sense of achievement was evident in the bright smiles on their faces as they proudly received their certificates of completion at the end of the programme.

Also present at the closing ceremony was Dr Boon Jong Fook, WOU tutor and consultant, who commended the students for displaying their enthusiasm, willingness to learn and cooperation throughout the programme.

The students with the SEHS academics at the end of the programme.
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