Lao Language Learning Materials

Phaphutthahuup Saksit - Lao Novel Than Samay - Intermediate/Heritage Lao Textbook Thang Lao - Beginning Textbook

If you're interested in learning Khmer language, see my Khmer language learning materials on

Welcome to If you want to learn Lao language, either by self-study or if you want to study Lao language with a tutor, here are some tried and tested Lao language and culture learning materials that can help you. Here you can download three books for studying Lao language; two textbooks (with accompanying audio tracks, videos and multimedia lessons) and one annotated novel with vocabulary and grammar explanations and exercises. The price for each textbook is $32 USD. The price for the novel is $10 USD.

After you order on the appropriate textbook page (click on one of the icons at the top of this page), I will share a Dropbox folder with you containing all of the files, and send you an e-mail with instructions.

If you have questions, please E-mail me. provides samples of and an opportunity to purchase university-level Lao teaching materials written by Frank Smith: Than Samay, an upper level Lao textbook aimed primarily at Heritage students (but also suitable for non-native speakers) at the Intermediate and Advanced level (2007), Thang Lao, a Beginning textbook for non-native speakers (2007), and Phaphutthahuup Saksit, an annotated, retyped version of the first Lao novel (from 1942), supplemented with vocabulary, grammar and culture explanations and exercises (2009). All materials were written with the assistance and supervision of native-speaking Lao instructors Chan and Kitt Amarathithada.

These textbooks are based on 17 summers worth of my experience teaching in and designing the Khmer language program at SEASSI, and 7 summers assisting the SEASSI Lao program. My Lao materials are heavily based on my successful Khmer language teaching materials in overall organization, format, and concept. These textbooks were used in the Lao program at SEASSI from 2005-2011. They form a multimedia foundation for communicative, content-based classroom activities by which to learn Lao language. The various ways of presenting information in these books, the choice of vocabulary and phrases, and the explanations have evolved over the years in response to student requests and teacher perceptions of student needs.

Each book features over 200 pages of color text and images (as PDFs)--less pages in the case of the novel--and each of the two textbooks comes with video, audio and other files which supplement the material in the books.

To see (and hear) samples of material from the textbooks, and to purchase them by either credit card or PayPal using a secure shopping cart, select one of the three book icons at the top of this page.

Note that while the "shopping cart" you'll be directed to when you click on one of the "Add to Cart" buttons is run by PayPal, and they do their best to get you to pay using PayPal, if you want to use a major credit card to purchase textbooks you can do that too...just choose the "Proceed to Checkout" option when you're asked to sign in to your PayPal account (unless of course you do want to use PayPal), and you'll be directed to a secure page where you can enter your credit card information.

The many hours that go into producing these Lao Textbooks, as well as the Khmer textbooks and other features on (please also see the Lao content on that website, here) take place during my free time. Besides the small amount of income I get from selling the textbooks, this site is essentially a labor of love. My many hours of work on this site are not compensated by anyone...if you feel so moved, donations are always appreciated!