If you want to be fluent in conversational Thai then this is the course for you. The introductory Everyday Thai for Beginners course is sufficient for interacting with Thai people about basic, everyday matters (shopping, ordering food, money, saying hello and asking about interests, friends and family). But now you want to have a relatively fluent conversation with Thai friends and colleagues about their personal lives and activities and their thoughts and feelings. A romance novel is most appropriate because it will usually include all the elements of relating to people on an intimate level.
Anki spaced-repetition flash cards
Sydney Remember was selected for this reason, plus the fact that it’s written in an easy, straight-forward and colloquial style, with plenty of modern (and useful) slang. It’s also a fun story about a Thai girl from Bangkok who goes to live with her cousin in Sydney, has to deal with visa issues, finds a place to stay, finds work, learns English and makes friends with various characters that she meets.
It’s a one-year course, working through each lesson in a relaxed fashion, two one-hour sessions per week with a Thai tutor, a little reading and listening plus an additional 10 minutes everyday building up your vocabulary using Anki.
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The interactive audiobook course is designed to be read aloud and listened to one sentence at a time, over and over again, until you can hear and understand each word clearly. There’s even a slow-play button! View the hidden English translation by clicking on the icon.
It comes with the 3,000-word Anki flash cards to build up your vocabulary, as well as a convenient karaoke-style audiobook for iPad/iPhone* that allows you to listen to the story being read out to you at variable speeds and repeated several times so that you “get it” crystal clear. It’s the best form of language ear training there is.
* Sorry, the Android version of the app has been discontinued by the developer. However, the new Rapid Thai app will incorporate the same feature (later on in the year).