Bryson Wood is our new German and French teacher in Secondary World Languages. He is from Staffordshire, famous for its beautiful pottery!
“In the years that my wife and I have been teaching overseas in Bahrain, Qatar and the UAE, the most fulfilling times were when I was working for a non-profit school where the focus was on providing the best conducive environment for learning and for the teachers’ well-being. My niece teaches at Bangkok Patana and told us how happy she was here, and so have former colleagues who have taught here. Now that our daughters are in university, we decided to seize the opportunity to teach at a world-class school in such a diverse and culture-rich country as Thailand.”
“Quite honestly, I can say that I am still beautifully overwhelmed by all that Bangkok Patana has to offer. That is, I am overwhelmed in a positive way, in that the school itself has so many new learning platforms and has made integrating into a new community so easy. What struck me is how supportive everyone has been; where there have been gaps in any of my approaches or experiences, the school has moved to fill those gaps which has been a massive help. In many cases, it has surpassed my expectations.”
“I have worked in a large variety of schools both internationally and in the UK, primarily as Head of Modern Foreign Languages, ranging from boarding schools, mixed independent schools and state schools in the UK and British International Schools overseas. While I teach both German and French, my absolute passion is German; it is like a hobby of mine, where I never stop learning. I have always spoken German with my daughters at home, so they both speak fluent German although it does make for unusual family conversations!”
“As I am passionate about music and drama, and as they both lend themselves very naturally to gaining confidence in a modern language, I love to incorporate them both as much as possible into my teaching. It’s a proven fact that music and drama do go hand-in-hand with learning foreign languages. The way one intonates and expresses oneself also is part of language. I often write my own words to karaoke versions of well-known songs in French and German. Naturally I will perform, but the intention always remains to get the children to feel uninhibited, and even to create their own lyrics for songs! Whilst not being the most hi-tech of theories or practices, it really seems to bring the language to life for the students.”
“I love walking and enjoy playing the violin and piano. I enjoy being close to nature, so I really love my walks in Lumphini Park; for me it is just as fulfilling as an expensive brunch!”
“After the newspaper article about speaking to my daughters only in German was published in Bahrain, it caught the attention of the German ambassador and the director of the Goethe Institute. As a result, my family and I were invited to the German Embassy for Christmas coffee and cake with the Ambassador and his wife. As the Ambassador did resemble Father Christmas somewhat (and had a very deep voice), our two daughters were absolutely besotted, singing German Christmas carols with him as he played the piano. Since the school had more students learning German than any school in the Gulf, he offered six annual scholarships to the school for students to spend their summer holidays doing residential language courses in Germany. On a lighter note, I also hosted the national radio station in Bahrain for two consecutive mornings which was my little claim to fame!”