As my skill level in writing (and speaking) Thai is rather low, I'm joining the bpratom 1 class for some basic tuition in the Thai equivalent of the ABC's.  I'll tell you all how it goes, but for now know that I've already spent some time reviewing my pulmonic consonants and figuring out that the difference between two of the 'd' sounds involves the alveolar ridge.  Yes, I had to dig deep into the recesses of my memory and hit Wikipedia to find the proper IPA symbols for the sounds I'm learning (I never used these sounds much in singing or in speaking English; retracted and laminal notations on the page probably mean that the sound won't carry), but it's nice to have things written down correctly!  Also, the fact that I need to look up ways to write what I'm hearing when learning the characters reinforce the fact that Thai sounds and English sounds can be close but they're not exact, like the charts I sometimes see on classroom walls might have you believe.  Those charts are part of the reason that people have 'w' and 'v' mixed up so often; the chart says that the [w] sound is like the letter 'v', so kids are all learning it wrong from grade 1!
These are just a few (sideways, sorry!) photos from my last lesson with Kruu Taew, who is also my dorm mate when I need to take a break from students during lunchtime.  The flashcards are the most amazing present ever from my amazing co!  So exciting!
7/1/2014 07:08:55

It sounds like a very difficult language for us Americans to learn, however, I am sure you will be fine.


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    These are the personal opinions of Spook, and do not reflect those of the Peace Corps.


    January 2014