Word Up! was recently selected as a resource at the AEC Learning Center in Bangkok, Thailand. (AEC stands for American English curriculum.) After discovering Word Up! on Google, Charn Marson and Supranee Yensuk, managing directors of the Center, arranged with Northwest Brainstorms Publishing to distribute the book to their students and other Thai speakers in the region.
Charn and Supranee and the seven other teachers on staff plan to use Word Up! in both its original English edition and a soon-to-be-released Thai edition, which Charn is translating himself.
Charn, a native of Thailand who went to high school and college in Columbus, Ohio, describes his interest in Word Up! this way:
In your video, you said, “You [the viewer] are a writer.” That made me want to contact you and read what you had to say. I want to be a better writer, plus I want to tell Thai people that they can write better English … To write well in English is probably the most difficult part of acquiring English language … that’s why I choose your book hoping it will inspire Thai people and other people in this region to learn how to write better English.
When I told Charn that I hadn’t expected Word Up! to translate well because of all its idioms, he replied,
I do not believe that Word Up! cannot be translated into Thai or any other languages in the world … This will be energy-consuming but I love it. Many of the American jokes cannot be said the same way your book explains. However, a good translator can get similar results using his or her experiences to explain anything even in English acquisition. Thai people, for sure, will learn from this book.
The AEC Learning Center, which opened on August 26, 2013, delivers instruction in American English and math. So far, 50 students—ages 4 to 48—have enrolled. Sometimes parents and their children attend together. The AEC Learning Center employs 9 teachers including Charn and Supranee, who teach in addition to their management responsibilities.
Charn plans to start using the original edition of Word Up! in the classroom soon, following with the translated edition in July or August. Meanwhile, the book already shows up on the school’s website (as shown below). Take a close look at that page’s URL, http://englishthaicenter.com/writing-english-เขียนภาษาอังกฤษ/มหาวิทยาลัย-up/. As if telling the book’s own story, it begins in English, it changes to Thai, and, in the end, things are looking up.