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32,000 Thai six graders are illiterate: Education official

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Part of the problem is that Thai parents expect school to teach kids everything and they seldom seem to take any kind of active role in trying to help educate their kids. My mother taught me as much as school did. Parents need to take control. Also the 'face' problem, schools are scared to tell the parents the truth about their kids as the loss of 'face' would lead to problems. As I keep telling people 'SCREW FACE !' Let's have some truth and face the problems head on...But TIT so nothing will ever change....sigh....

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Contrary to most comments on this thread, my recently turned 4 year old can recite and recognise all the characters of the Thai alphabet as well as the English alphabet. She can write all the English letters (big and small) perfectly, and does a fair representation of most Thai characters.

Her idea of fun is tracing around the Thai characters in some learning books to become more familiar with writing them. I've learnt over half of the Thai characters by default because she pesters me to help her all the time.

She's also responsible for helping me master my spoken Thai as her ability to relate Thai and English words with actions or situations is just uncanny.

The trouble is, the parents of Thai children rely on the teachers in their school to teach them how to read and write. Sure, they learn spoken Thai from their parents, primarily, but I can't imagine those poor peasant parents buying their kiddies books to show them how to read and write!!

OK, so you have learnt to write about half of the Thai letters - what about all of the other aspects such as the vowels, numerous peculiar rules, tone marks, special letters and definitive rules for ror reua and or ahng, not to mention consonant clusters etc:

Knowing how to write 50% of the consonants is fine and dandy but it isnot going to get you very far is it!!

The fact that I've learnt to recognise half of the Thai characters was not the point of my post, it was merely an aside. I used that analogy to show how enthralled my 4 year old is at learning - I soaked up knowledge because of her hunger to learn. As a further aside, I have no intention of learning to read or write Thai, so proficiency in the finer points of the written language that you highlight have no particular interest for me.

The point of my post was to point out that if given some encouragement, Thai children can easily learn two languages and have some written proficiency at age 4, just as our children can (and do) in the west.

Your first paragraph is on the money. And if I can draw parallels to my own country, the literacy level of Maori children in NZ is well below that of Pakeha (NZ Europeans). The main reason being lack of encouragement from their parents because of their general lack of appreciation of the need to be educated - that's a broad brush observation to a complex situation, but I think satisfactory for the sake of this discussion.

There was basically no education system in Thailand until post WWII - I haven't time to google the details but I recall that as being generally correct. Until that time also, it was normal for women to be topless in their everyday lives, thus showing how backwards (terrible word) Thai society and education was at that time.

The parents and grandparents of many of the current school age children were and are therefore illiterate or maybe only semi-literate. My wife's parents aged in their late 50's are illiterate. This is similar to developments in the west - my grandparents were born circa 1890 and they were only semi-literate. Education in the UK raced ahead after that generation and my parents (from working class backgrounds) were educated by the State and were obviously literate. My old man got me interested in crosswords as a kid, and it's a hard habit to break!

My opinion is that Thai education with regard to literacy is therefore a generation or two behind western cultures. Future parents will be generally better educated and with the aid of technology, I suspect the current and next generation of Thais will leap ahead in the literacy stakes. Just my humble analysis. smile.png

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My half cast kid is coming up for twelve next month and already knows his own name, when he's shat himself and hardly ever stabs himself in the eye with his knife when eating soup.

Edited by Phuket electrician
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My kid is coming up for twelve next month and he know his own name, can say when he needs to take a dump and hardly ever stabs himself in the eye when eating soup.

I wonder how he lets you know when he wants to pass a stool ie: what words you have taught him (maybe I don't need to know this actually)!!

Also, the fact that he only has two eyes makes it quite dangerous considering that he only 'hardly ever' stabs himself in the eye now. This implies that he has done on occasion in the past.

I assume the fact that it is soup means that it is with a spoon and not a knife or fork so that lessens the severity of the potential of causing damage!! smile.png.

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Yes you are very sharp he does only have two eyes, one of which is pretty much always facing forwards.

Having just re-read your post I assume he is 12 months old rather than 12, and where exactly does the other eye point if not forwards?

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.......I taught for 1 year at a 'business college' or 'vocational high school'.....

...a great percentage of the students there are illiterate......

(....Oh..sorry...it has to be kept a secret....)

.....what....???........the head of the department must keep the scam hidden.....I did what....???........I was found guilty of what...???

....I was slandered and dismissed..........(and part of my salary was withheld, too)......to keep their corrupt secrets.......secret.......

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Yes you are very sharp he does only have two eyes, one of which is pretty much always facing forwards.

Having just re-read your post I assume he is 12 months old rather than 12, and where exactly does the other eye point if not forwards?

You maybe able to read and write Thai but you understanding of written English is shall I say is not 100%

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Add another 25 of my P6 students. Their Thai reading level is below my P2 grade son. sad.png

Most Thai students will tell you that Thai language class is their worst. They absolutely hate it.

I'm not surprised they can't read. Look at their alphabet!!!

Do what the countries around them have done and use the alphabet of their former colonisers - Dutch, British,

French. Is there any ASEAN country using a pre-colonial alphabet? smile.png

Thailand was only ever occupied by Japan (although they would still deny it), that alphabet would help....

Burmese, Chinese, Portuguese and the Dutch, did the Greeks make it this far east? Or and the Spanish.

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