Monday, November 16, 2009

Culture in EFL/ESL

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Hi all,

I've read many articles on culture, teaching culture and promoting cultural awareness, joined the class discussions on culture for more than a month. When I first started reading about this broad topic, I was really puzzled as there are many factors involved whenever culture is considered. It is still not clear in my mind but I can definitely say that at least I could frame the concept in my mind. That's not a great start but it's a start anyway.

We have read some articles on this broad topic and I think these articles at least provided us with different perspectives on culture and teaching culture. Some of the most significant aspects I realized in this process are:

1-It is very difficult to make a clear definition of culture.

2-There are different ideas about whether or not to teach culture. While some state that language can be seperated from culture, others claim that language can not be isolated from culture and therefore it is necessary to teach culture.

3-Teaching culture requires a great deal of teacher awareness.With this awareness EFL teachers can be selective about the class materials and create and adapt their own materials.

4-It is extremely necessary to create an intercultural awareness in the twenty first century as the world is getting more and more global thanks to the technological developments.

These are my highlights of the previous weeks. However, I still need innovative, extraordinary ideas to integrate culture to EFL/ESL settings.

What about you, my dear readers? How do you present and integrate culture to your own classroom settings?