Bring back traditional language teaching methods: Thai princess

Bring back traditional language teaching methods: Thai princess
Their Majesties King Bhumibol Adulyadej, Queen and Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn.

HER ROYAL Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn is encouraging the use of the traditional way of teaching pronunciation in Thai language instead of the new method, which focuses on learning words by rote and is being used in certain government schools.

At a Chiang Mai seminar on Wednesday held to mark her 60th birthday on April 2, the princess said that rote learning did not teach youngsters the principles of spelling and pronouncing words in the Thai language. She also cited the fact that many young students are unable to pronounce correctly if the vowels or consonants are changed.

An official from the Office of Basic Education Commission (Obec), which supervises government primary and secondary schools, told the princess that the traditional technique of teaching the language had returned to schools. However, the princess urged Obec to further improve the technique.

The seminar, held by the Education Ministry and other government agencies including the Border Patrol Police Bureau, also highlighted schooling for children and youngsters in remote areas in provinces and along borders. In her speech, the princess commended these programmes, saying she supported them.

She also referred to the reforestation projects in four provinces in the North, which are under joint supervision by the Office of Non-Formal and Informal Education, where non-Thai residents are given free education in exchange for protecting forested areas. She said certain crops, such as coffee or fruits could be developed into value-added products, which would help residents.

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