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richard10365

Wan Or Van

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I have studied a little bit of the Thai language and was wondering what farang teachers teach with regards to 2 letters.

When saying the word Van, does it sound more authentic to teach kids to say "van" spelled like แวน (wan) or แฟน (fan which sounds more like the auctuall word "van")?

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I have studied a little bit of the Thai language and was wondering what farang teachers teach with regards to 2 letters.

When saying the word Van, does it sound more authentic to teach kids to say "van" spelled like แวน (wan)  or  แฟน (fan which sounds more like the auctuall word "van")?

You should teach them to pronounce "V" correctly. Why teach them bad habits?

Incidently the 2 examples you have given are pronounced "Wairn" and "Fairn" as you have used the vowel 'sera air' (or 'sera ae' as it is often written).

Edited by loong

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I have studied a little bit of the Thai language and was wondering what farang teachers teach with regards to 2 letters.

When saying the word Van, does it sound more authentic to teach kids to say "van" spelled like แวน (wan)  or  แฟน (fan which sounds more like the auctuall word "van")?

You should teach them to pronounce "V" correctly. Why teach them bad habits?

Incidently the 2 examples you have given are pronounced "Wairn" and "Fairn" as you have used the vowel 'sera air' (or 'sera ae' as it is often written).

My thai girlfriend says แฟน is pronounced fan and not fairn. The Thai dictionary I use said แฟน is the thai word for lover, husband, wife, best girl, boyfriend, or girlfriend.

Most thai people I know, when refering to any of the definitions above, say fan and not fairn.

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I'd agree with Loong here. There are a number of English sounds that cannot be replicated using the Thai alphabet and I rarely try to spell English words using Thai letters. For instance, I saw a Thai textbook that spelled the word bag as บาก, which is actually pronounced back, but with a longer a sound than you would use in English.

If you are teaching students who have been studying with Thai teachers, one of your first priorities should be to correct the words and sounds that they have learned to pronounce incorrectly!

Good Luck!

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My thai girlfriend says  แฟน is pronounced fan and not fairn. The Thai dictionary I use said  แฟน is the thai word for lover, husband, wife, best girl, boyfriend, or girlfriend.

Most thai people I know, when refering to any of the definitions above, say fan and not fairn.

It is pronounced fairn, but without the "R" sound.

You say most Thai people you know say "fan" so the others pronounce it correctly, yes? If you are teaching, you should be using correct pronunciation.

How does you gf pronounce the Thai word for 'Mother'? (Mair or Mae). Does she say it the same way as in the english word 'man'?

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My thai girlfriend says  แฟน is pronounced fan and not fairn. The Thai dictionary I use said  แฟน is the thai word for lover, husband, wife, best girl, boyfriend, or girlfriend.

Most thai people I know, when refering to any of the definitions above, say fan and not fairn.

It is pronounced fairn, but without the "R" sound.

You say most Thai people you know say "fan" so the others pronounce it correctly, yes? If you are teaching, you should be using correct pronunciation.

How does you gf pronounce the Thai word for 'Mother'? (Mair or Mae). Does she say it the same way as in the english word 'man'?

She says Maa without the "r" sound.

I live in central thailand (near Cambodia) and she is from the north but the kids in this area say maa without the "r" as well. I don't think I have ever heard anyone say Mair.

Maybe it has something to do with the location of where people are in Thailand.

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This is interesting, and I don't mean to interrupt. There is a separate forum for Thai language discussions on this overall thaivisa.com/forum

My curiosity compels this question: why would you need to know such things, if you're teaching ENGLISH in Thailand? Perhaps it helps to know how Thai language pronounces things, but the entire transliteration practice, from what little I understand since I don't speak Thai, is fraught with difficulties.

Many Thai schools don't want farang native speakers of English speaking Thai in the classroom. I couldn't if I wanted to, so it's a joke that I saw things like "Arai nah?" and "It's cold in Alaska NOW," and "the fan up there, not Sasakorn's fan."

I don't mean to be negative or pedantic, but what's the practical use for an English teacher, of knowing the answer to the OP's question?

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I don't mean to be negative or pedantic, but what's the practical use for an English teacher, of knowing the answer to the OP's question?

PeaceBlondie, your English seems quite well.

If you were the only farang in a village and someone took a lot of time time trying to explain why a wan was late, would it make you wonder why Thai people use wan to describe something that sounds more like fan?

It makes me wonder what is being taught in Thai classrooms and why.

Does wacume cleaner sound better than facume cleaner?

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Maybe it has something to do with the location of where people are in Thailand.

Just like the word "van" in English is pronounced different ways.

I would say it more like vun, so I am told.

When I taught English, I got the Thais to write down what I was saying in Thai, which taught me a lot about my English accent. I was amazed at how I actually sounded.

I write down English pronunciation in Thai when teaching people words. It is good to be able to do this.

When I learned Thai, I used dictionaries with romanised transliteration. I also got people to write the word down using the English alphabet. So, why not do it in reverse with the Thais learning English.

Should all of us foreigner learning Thai use dictionaries with only Thai letters?

All the English teachers I know who say NEVER write thai or speak Thai in class are guys who can't.

Unless you have the time to teach them the international phonetic alphabet, I think it is a good idea to write the Thai transliteration on the whitebaord for troublesome words.

What do others think?

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What do others think?

But Thai letters do not describe English sounds!

Then people start topics such as this.

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QUOTE

What do others think?

But Thai letters do not describe English sounds!

Then people start topics such as this.

Well, English letters don't describe many Thai sounds, but MANY dictionaries have English to Karaoke instead of Thai, even Guidebooks.

And Thai letters can describe English sounds very well!

Edited by Neeranam

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Yes, but the goals are different, and so are results. I, for one, will never get any Thai word right just by reading a dictionary. English letters are poor substitutes for Thai sounds.

If Thai letters describe English sounds so well, they would have "v" in their alphabet, for starters, and "th" in "think" and "th" in "this", and "ee" in feet wouldn't be just longer "i" as in fit, and so on. They would also be able to tell the difference between voiced and unvoiced consonants.

Any serious learner shouldn't use his native letters (and sounds) to learn foreign pronunciation, it's just absurd.

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When teaching how to make the 'v' sound as well as the 'z' sound I firsts have the student hum and hold their hand on their throat and feel the vibrations....then for the 'v' sound I have them make an 'f' sound (which is easy for them) and then hum while doing it......and like wise for the 'z' sound I have them make the 's' sound and then hum while doing it. I have them feel their own throat while learning to make these sounds and I often have them feel my throat while I make the sounds so that they are convinced that the vibrations should be strong while pronouncing the 'v' and 'z'. This seems to work really well with many/most/all students willing to put some effort into practicing it regularly(seems like most students don't want to practice anything regularly)....you may find that students are embarassed to do this and works better when tutoring or in small groups. This is a technique which I invented myself so please send me 1 baht for each student you instruct with this technique.

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Thanks, chownah, for getting us back on track. I understand you to be saying that you don't use Thai alphabet to teach English sounds. You teach students to speak English by using their voice, mouth, lips, palate, tongue, lungs, etc., correctly. I teach the 'th' sound by sticking my tongue out too far. I don't teach the difference between the two 'th' sounds at basic or intermediate. I teach most 'ph' sounds as a simple /f/ sound so they don't confuse it with a hard 'p'. I teach that English vowels don't have tones, but English poly-syllabic words and English sentences do have tones of intensity (inflection) or ending (most questions).

The international phonetic alphabet (or your brother-in-laws latest version of it) is just one more incredibly complex alphabet that neither I nor my students have the time nor the desire to learn.

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