IMHO Yamsaard school

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GLCQuantum
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Re: IMHO Yamsaard school

Post by GLCQuantum » Sun Oct 23, 2011 12:06 am

Just to add....

I think it says it all that a teacher pulled their kid out the school like Big Ideas did. Only a teacher knows the full ins and outs of a school and if they pull their kid out - there's a big problem.

During my 4 years at Somtawin we had many teachers whose kids were studying in the school (including the Director of Academics) and NONE took their kids out. Sorry... actually there was one lass whose kid was in kinder and expected it to be a mini Oxford... nevertheless her child and her stuck up self lasted all of 3 months.

After having worked outside of Somtawin for the last 3+ years (International School, 300,000 a year, Sarasas, 80,000 a year, Trilingual School 100,000 a year) I have come to the conclusion that Somtawin is simply DAMN good value for money with happy teachers and happy kids. Level of english is second to none. You just will not find a school that can offer the level of English that Somtawin offers for any less than half a million in Bangkok. The international school I worked at was WAY behind Somtawin, Why?..... because there were no foreign kids there speaking English together in the playgrounds during breaks. Of course I am a little bit biase as it's a place I love but I also have means of comparison to back up my argument. My means of comparison also include the 'best' school in Thailand (just google Sarasas Bangbon - 'The Willy Wonka Factory for Kids Striving to Become Something by the Name of the School They Went to) an International School which was over three times as expensive as Somtawin and.....


(P.S. Somtawin School... please give me a job again. If you could I'd be back in a heartbeat :o )


ONLY one school for farang or half farang kids in Hua Hin I'm afraid.

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Re: IMHO Yamsaard school

Post by nanyang » Sun Oct 23, 2011 6:26 pm

bigideas wrote:Second year as a Yamsaard School parent and I'm pleased to say that things are looking up. At the end of last academic year, I was seriously thinking about other alternatives. However, I couldn't justify taking my kid away from such good friends without a little more perserverence.

Improvements:

The road is being improved and I think "even" concrete is being laid as we speak.

Some curricular and extra curricular classes are being streamed so that better able pupils who are doing something for a second year aren't lumbered with less able pupils who are a year behind. So for ballet for example there are two classes - one for complete beginners and one for those with a years experience. In homeroom classes, better attempts have also been made to equal the number of boys and girls in each class.

I have seen at least one English teacher in the playground playing with the kids, wheereas before, only Thai teachers did playground duty.

Problems:

Still has a high turnover of teachers and admin.

The ratio between native English speaking teachers and those from the Phillipines, is moving in the direction of the Phillipines. Not that I view this as a major problem, just something to watch. I personally would rather a good Phillipino teacher who stuck around (even with a few minor faults in his/her English) than a new native English speaking teacher every year. When I was at school most of the maths and science teachers were not native speakers and I didn't end up speaking like them, I ended up taking the mickey out of them!


I'm interested to know what went so wrong for you.
A little over a year ago you were waxing lyrically about Yamsaard.
Sadly, both in Thailand and the West, parental expectations are often not realised.
The curriculum at both Hua-Hin schools is quite limited.
Home schooling is an interim measure and, away from a Western environment, needs to be carefully monitored.
Home schooling can work at primary level but secondary education is quite different.
Neither school in Hua-Hin has a sufficiently rigorous secondary level curriculum to equip students with the necessary academic skills required to compete in the west.
You're not going to get that level of teaching expertise for 100,000 baht a year.
The stark choice is either pay a lot more in Thailand for a 'proper' western education or relocate.

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Re: IMHO Yamsaard school

Post by parent1-2 » Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:03 am

I have a student in grade 1-2 at Yamsa Ard and I'm very happy with the school. Every time I have had a problem I have gone to Mr. Allan, who is the homeroom teacher in 1-2, and I have gotten a response and we've been able to work out any differences and problems without drama. Mr. Allan has amazing control over the class, there is no bulling and the classroom is quiet and calm during the lessons, that is what my kid is telling me, my kid feels confident and she is learning a lot. I know that talking to the office, is like banging your head against a wall [specifics edited], but seeing things from an academic side the school seems great to me. Mr. Allan is an educated teacher, which is rare to find in a Thai school, and he seems to know exactly what he is doing. I don't know about the other teachers because all my correspondence is with him, but I'm very happy with the educational level of the school. The problem with the school is the ramp that goes up to the second floor I truly wish they would close that ramp, some day a kid will get hurt there. Please specifies what you guys are so unhappy with I want to know because I haven't had any problems there.

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Re: IMHO Yamsaard school

Post by bigideas » Tue Oct 25, 2011 3:06 pm

I have to say that there were many reasons for us not continuing at Yamsaard School and it wasn't just a case of crap school management. As usual, it was my 5 year old kid's idea first. She brought it up rather sensibly over the holidays saying that she didn't really want to go back there because of a tiny bit of bullying. Over the time she was there she was a straight "A's" pupil (top of the class etc) and I've always thought that she wasn't being challenged enough, so I said "Well I'll keep asking until the end of the holiday and if you still don't fancy it, I won't force you - but then you'll have to agree to study at home". She said OK and still didn't fancy going back at the end of the hols so i made up a little home curriculum.
Mornings: Breakfast with KidsCo followed by English reading, writing and spelling (We use Get Set Go). Piano practice. Reading practice with www.starfall.com then maths with www.ixl.com. Then we do French with BBC Muzzy francais. After lunch my wife does Thai reading and writing and arts and crafts. On weekends she does ballet (Hua Hin Market Village 3rd floor) and we go swimming alot and fit in the occasional horse riding session on the beach. I thought this detail might be useful for someone considering homeschooling their kids themselves. Since homeschooling, her English (choice of vocab, grammar, pronunciation (American accent) has blossomed and now she is almost a (5yr old) native speaker. She loves practising French with me and is even learning Spanish with Dora (the Explorer) on her own. We have lots of kids on our soi, so she plays with them after school and on weekends.
Another reason I didn't just ignore my daughter when she said she didn't fancy going back is that there is a real possibility that we may go to live in England or France over the next couple of years and so I want her to be ready for any eventuality.
So to summarise, the management isn't very good, the "hi-so" type parents are even worse, and academically it's only worth schooling your kid there if they're K1-p3 and you have no alternative because of your work schedule. However, it was probably more personal reasons why we pulled out in the end.

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Re: IMHO Yamsaard school

Post by Spitfire » Tue Oct 25, 2011 5:06 pm

These schools are often over-subscribed too, rotten to the core, run as the personal fiefdom of the director plus controlled under a cloud of fear for the Thai teachers with business results/performance prevailing over educational value/sense whilst expectations of parents (Thai as well as foreigners) are often wildly unrealistic (here in LOS at any case).........and inevitably failed.

The Thai educational system is simply an anachronistic moronic dinosaur stuck in it's ways with little hope of being a success apart from in small enclaves of the system, usually due to the endeavours of individuals rather than the policy of an establishment.
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Re: IMHO Yamsaard school

Post by nanyang » Tue Oct 25, 2011 5:28 pm

bigideas wrote: we may go to live in England or France over the next couple of years
An excellent idea - I prefer the French option as it affords the opportunity to learn another European language.

We intend to relocate to France, rather than the UK, with our daughters in 2013.

Moving on to your homeschooling I recommend this source:

http://www.Phonicsinternational.com

It 'spoon feeds' you as to how to teach your child English.

My seven year old is currently reading 'Secret Garden' without difficulty whilst being fluent in Thai and Chinese.
I am her only source of English and I consider the above mentioned site to be an invaluable resource.

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Re: IMHO Yamsaard school

Post by dtaai-maai » Tue Oct 25, 2011 5:59 pm

bigideas wrote: ... As usual, it was my 5 year old kid's idea first. She brought it up rather sensibly over the holidays saying that she didn't really want to go back there because of a tiny bit of bullying. Over the time she was there she was a straight "A's" pupil (top of the class etc) and I've always thought that she wasn't being challenged enough, so I said "Well I'll keep asking until the end of the holiday and if you still don't fancy it, I won't force you - but then you'll have to agree to study at home". She said OK and still didn't fancy going back at the end of the hols so i made up a little home curriculum.
Mornings: Breakfast with KidsCo followed by English reading, writing and spelling (We use Get Set Go). Piano practice. Reading practice with http://www.starfall.com then maths with http://www.ixl.com. Then we do French with BBC Muzzy francais. After lunch my wife does Thai reading and writing and arts and crafts. On weekends she does ballet (Hua Hin Market Village 3rd floor) and we go swimming alot and fit in the occasional horse riding session on the beach. I thought this detail might be useful for someone considering homeschooling their kids themselves. Since homeschooling, her English (choice of vocab, grammar, pronunciation (American accent) has blossomed and now she is almost a (5yr old) native speaker. She loves practising French with me and is even learning Spanish with Dora (the Explorer) on her own. We have lots of kids on our soi, so she plays with them after school and on weekends. ...
Regardless of the rights and wrongs of Yamsaard, Somtawin, France, the UK, etc., I really enjoyed this post. It sounds like you have an intelligent child and a good relationship and, as important as anything else, a whole lot of fun. Good luck to you, mate. :thumb: :cheers:
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Re: IMHO Yamsaard school

Post by bigideas » Tue Oct 25, 2011 8:55 pm

To Nanyang: :cheers: Thanks for that! I had a look at the website and may well use it in the future if I need to. Nice to hear that your 7 year old daughter is doing well. Just goes to show that a little bit of effort put in when they're young enough goes a long way!

To dtaai-maai: Thanks mate! Nice to be in good company! :cheers:

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Re: IMHO Yamsaard school

Post by GLCQuantum » Tue Oct 25, 2011 11:57 pm

Regardless of the rights and wrongs of Yamsaard, Somtawin, France, the UK, etc., I really enjoyed this post. It sounds like you have an intelligent child and a good relationship and, as important as anything else, a whole lot of fun. Good luck to you, mate.
Yep,I actually could not agree more. Earlier on today I nearly replied to the blatantly obvious teacher from Yamsaard hiding under a remarkably original name. Yes... we aint stupid here.

I'm glad I didn't bring a load more negativity into this thread than was needed, and instead was able to enjoy the past few constructive posts on the topic.

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Re: IMHO Yamsaard school

Post by PeteC » Wed Oct 26, 2011 12:30 am

I may have mentioned this before in another thread, but regardless, Take a look at http://www.studyladder.com/ for home schooling and as extra support work for any child. Pete :cheers:
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Re: IMHO Yamsaard school

Post by bigideas » Wed Oct 26, 2011 3:31 pm

Studyladders fantastic!
Thanks for that Pete :cheers:
We've just spent about an hour on it after signing up for restricted usage for a while. I'll definitely sign up for membership eventually. I like the breadth of subjects that it covers. I've been looking for science and music support for some time. Relatively cheap too!

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Re: IMHO Yamsaard school

Post by PeteC » Wed Oct 26, 2011 3:55 pm

bigideas wrote:Studyladders fantastic!
Thanks for that Pete :cheers:
We've just spent about an hour on it after signing up for restricted usage for a while. I'll definitely sign up for membership eventually. I like the breadth of subjects that it covers. I've been looking for science and music support for some time. Relatively cheap too!
Happy you find it helpful. :thumb: They have a promotion going on this month that if you sign up for a year you get 3 extra months. But it has perhaps ended now, I don't know. If you use the site often, the 88.00AUD per year is not bad. Pete :cheers:
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