Chanisara is studying in our Intensive IELTS program. Originally from Thailand, she’s been in Boston for four weeks now at ELC. Ni, as we call her, has studied English throughout her life. After graduating university three years ago, Ni joined the American law firm of Baker & McKenzie LTD, in their Bankok office. She says in her field, English is extremely important. Clients expect her and her colleagues to have a high level of skill in the language and that is what brought her to study in our program.
I’ve had so many great moments! One of my favorite activities were ELC Softball with Katherine. Softball is not popular in Thailand, I even don’t think I’ve ever even seen people playing before. It was refreshing to learn something new that I could instantly enjoy. And I’m very proud to have scored a run for my team!
Also the school potluck was one of my favorite times. I was able to try so many international foods and share food from my own culture. I brought a dish called Yum Woon San, in English you can call it, Spicy and Sour Noodles. The Potluck, I think, is one of the best ways to meet new friends. While we were eating, talking became easier and next thing I knew, I had spoken to many people I had never seen at school.
My teachers are Dave and Timothy and they’re both excellent. They encourage me to speak, which was difficult in the beginning. In Thailand, classrooms are always quiet, or just the teacher speaking. Our system is that the teacher teaches, and the students listen. But Dave and Timothy ask about my ideas and opinions. And of course, they always correct me when I make mistakes. But the important thing is that now I don’t feel so afraid of making mistakes, and I’m improving more quickly. Every conversation in class feels like a discussion just among friends.
At home in Thailand my hobbies are horseback riding and scuba diving. My riding is more frequent. I take a one hour trip from my Bankok to reach the stables. Unfortunately I don’t own a horse, but renting is actually fun because I get to try out many different horses. And each time you switch horses is a challenge. They have different tempers, and the shape of their backs are different and sometimes even the preferred saddle changes.
Scuba diving is an activity that requires more of my time because the locations are so far from the city. I have to travel south to where the beaches are and it’s so beautiful there. Once, I saw a whale shark while diving. That was a really thrilling experience. I also studied violin when growing up. Then as an adult I decided to practice the piano. I like music and it’s more interesting to play piano, because I can accompany more people.
Practice makes perfect! This is a phrase I really believe in. Hopefully this will be a winning strategy in my IELTS preparation. I need to get a high score, so I need to keep practicing.
My favorite food is spaghetti… Maybe it’s more Italian than American, but I love spaghetti in the US! As for a restaurant, I’ve been to Legal Seafood at the Boston Harbor for a most delicious meal. Also, Boston clam chowder in the bread bowl is really tasty and filling.
I will quote my favorite English phrase and say, practice makes perfect! If you want to learn new things, any skill, not just English, this is a most important strategy. My life story has followed this motto. I just try something… and keep trying.
The first challenge is IELTS. That’s in the fast future. Then I’d like to get my Master’s in either the UK or the US before I return to Thailand. In the far future, I want to one day become a judge back home. That’s my goal.