By Nattakan Chomputhong (Ann), CLE Legal Fellow, Thailand

The workshop at Ubon Ratchathani University (URU) in August aimed to educate law professors about the CLE program and how it works. I was really excited about this workshop because it was the first one where I was not only working as a translator, but would be a presenter as well.

The main purpose of the workshop was to demonstrate CLE’s pedagogical approach and encourage the law professors to use interactive methods instead of traditional lectures. The two-hour workshop used many different interactive methods, including role play, small-group discussion, powerpoint presentations and games, so they could see how effective these methods are.

Because of this, I too saw how effective they are, and it further highlighted for me the difference between interactive and traditional teaching methods. It justified the claim that people can remember better if they learn by doing, and people will remember best if they teach others.

Learning by Doing

The participants in the workshop were law professors from different areas of law. After learning about our lesson plans, they were able to write a lesson plan for their respective subjects that included the knowledge, skills and values necessary in teaching law.

I also had the opportunity to visit the URU law clinic to see the practical application of the workshop. The CLE knowledge that BABSEACLE and BABSEACLE Foundation has helped them gain allows the lecturers and their students working in the clinic to be able to provide legal assistance to local communities.

Just before the URU workshop, I had taken two interns from the Czech Republic to visit the CLE clinic at the university I graduated from, Chiang Mai University (CMU). I acted as the translator for the interns during the session and  from our discussions, I gathered that it is not easy to start a clinic in their home country. I also noted that it is not that easy to start one in Chiang Mai either There are currently 50 students working in the CMU law clinic, but only after a long time and much effort. I am very proud of my alma mater.

And after participating in the workshops at Ubon Ratchathani, the University of Phayao and Mae Fah Luang University, I am very proud of our work here with BABSEACLE and BABSEACLE Foundation in not only establishing law clinics but imparting the values and ethics of law to change society.