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Cultural Awareness in the English Classroom


Helping students through acculturation process
Julissa Y
Mind Map by Julissa Y, updated more than 1 year ago
Julissa Y
Created by Julissa Y over 6 years ago

Resource summary

Cultural Awareness in the English Classroom
  1. The self as cultural
    1. Our culture affects how we think, interact, communicate and transmit knowledge.
      1. Teachers need to define what culture is before they can engage their students in an interactive culture discussion.
        1. Only then, they can guide students to think about what people do, think and make in their own culture.
          1. And through these discussions, students make connections across cultures while studying English, in a sphere of interculturality.
          2. Elements of Culture
            1. Customs, values, products, beliefs, and communication styles of a culture or society
              1. Standards for Foreign Language speaking provide the tangible (Products) and intangible (Perspectives - Practices) aspects of a society.
                1. Perspectives - Thoughts, feelings and values Practices - Ways of communication and interaction Products - creations as music, technology, food, lliterature, etc
                  1. Cultural iceberg analogy illustrates differences between the visible aspects of a new culture and the embedded aspects of the same.
                    1. Students can point out the surface and subsurface culture elements of the culture and make differences in a fun way using this analogy.
                    2. Intercultural Phenomena
                      1. Include culture shock, cultural adaptation and cultural adjustment.
                        1. Teachers should prepare students for possible situation when traveling or moving to an English speaking country.
                          1. Acculturation : Excitement (overlooking negative aspects) - Culture shock (start comparing due to difficulties, frustration or hostility)- Recovery (start building relationships, and feeling comfortable) - Adaption (adapt and accept).
                          2. Particular cultures
                            1. I:n High context cultures - Emphasize interpersonal relationships and give more importance to groups harmony
                              1. In Low context cultures - due to Individualism, people value people being direct and concise.
                              2. Acquiring strategies for culture learning
                                1. Teachers must provide opportunities to explore and recognize cultural differences.
                                  1. Raise awareness in students of the target language and their own language.
                                    1. Curiosity and openness to other cultures, understanding social practices,
                                    2. Role Plays
                                      1. These get students involved interactively in a lesson to allow them to emphasize with members from other cultures
                                      2. Cultural Observations
                                        1. Teachers or students can gather books, newspapers, music or other elements to evaluate their cultural practices.
                                        2. Culture Journals
                                          1. They allow students reflect on what they experience and discuss in class
                                            1. Through them, students can privately communicate with their teachers or share some experiences with their classmates if they wish.
                                              1. These allow students to record their thoughts emotions and reactions to the classroom activities, with the aim of becoming interculturally competent.
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