This month we welcome Dr.Lindsey Macdonald as our guest blogger for the HubICL Hubbub newsletter at https://hubicl.org/members/1005/blog/2022/05/an-interview-with-matthew-goode-creator-of-childhood-saying. In her blog Macdonald interviews Dr. Matthew Goode about his original intercultural learning tool "Childhood Saying," curated into the Intercultural Learning Hub at hubicl.org/toolbox/tools/774. Would you like to contribute an activity to the HubICL Toolbox? The process is simple. To get started, go to hubicl.org/toolbox/tools/new. close

"CERCLL Collection for Language Teachers" 24 posts Sort by created date Sort by defined ordering View as a grid View as a list

Not just for study abroad

We have been using the Amazing Race in Study Abroad support courses for many years at Purdue, but I think it has applications to the language classroom as well. You would just need to adapt the instructions, and I can envision two ways to do that: moving the context to a target-language area of the local community, or changing it to a web-based activity.

0 comments 0 reposts

Foundational ethnographic skills

Do your students need some basic instruction and practice in listening and observation skills that can help them learn about culturally different others? Here are two new options from CILMAR: Thick Description and Emic Perspectives.

0 comments 0 reposts

Doing ethnography

Here are 3 activities you can use to hone those cultural discovery skills in your language learners: Grocery Store Ethnography, YouTube Ethnography, Martian Anthropology.

0 comments 0 reposts

For those who like a good critical incident

There are a ton of resources linked from the Critical Incident tool under Links. Check out all the ways that you can get your learners to imagine themselves in a culturally fraught situation and think/talk/write through how they would respond.

0 comments 0 reposts

Card game that stimulates conflict

Another great simulation is Barnga, especially if you want to highlight how different cultures "play by different rules" and "define winning in different ways". It is easy and cheap to run and students enjoy it.

0 comments 0 reposts

A simulation that highlights assumptions

Albatross is another oldie but goodie - it is relatively easy to perform and adapt to different contexts. The learning is both in the discomfort of the simulation itself and especially in the debriefing. I would recommend that newcomers to the simulation try to watch it done (I have seen videos online) before trying it themselves. What I like about simulations like this is that they give learners such an embodied experience to process and reflect on.

0 comments 0 reposts

Classic simulations

More kinesthetic options include these simulations that have been around forever in different forms: BaFa BaFa requires quite a bit of accoutrement, but Toothpicks and Cocktail party are easier and cheaper updates. Great for highlighting cultural differences in norms and behaviors and giving learners that embodied experience of discomfort in an unfamiliar environment. 

0 comments 0 reposts

Focusing on space

Draw a House is a good proxemics activity. Rather than the more typical focus of personal space bubbles in most proxemic learning exercises, this one emphasizes the differences in how people around the world arrange their living spaces. I like it because it reveals both similarities and differences. It also engages learners kinestheically.

0 comments 0 reposts

An oldie but a goodie

This activity, the Scissors Game, has been around forever, but I still like it because it is simple, fun, kinesthetic, and effectively makes the point that students need to pay attention to other peoples' bodies. 

0 comments 0 reposts

Nonverbals can be as important as conversation skills

Don't neglect nonverbal communication in the language classroom! Not only can attention to nonverbals be very helpful to language learners in interpreting what they hear, but also they can get students into trouble if they assume universality in nonverbal communication because of the way it varies across cultures. HINT: To find tools on any topic, you can search Tags (under the Discover menu) or the full HubICL site (top right Search link) for key words such as nonverbal, gesture, proxemics, etc. These are the hits that come up in the Toolbox for nonverbal.

0 comments 0 reposts

Conversation starters are a great resource for language teachers

Whether you are assigning conversation partners amongst your own students, or pairing them with native speakers externally, it is extremely useful to provide some structure and guidance for their communication. To focus on cultural learning as well as listening and speaking practice, try out these sets of discussion prompts. The last one, Keep it Real, is an actual board game that would be great for in-person classroom use and really gets at issues of inclusion and social justice.

0 comments 0 reposts

Assessment ideas for world language classrooms

Aletha Stahl has a great collection of resources for assessing intercultural learning in language classrooms. See her favorites here.

0 comments 0 reposts

A versatile Values activity

I love that the Human Values Continuum can be so easily adapted. I linked here not only the original tool, but also collection posts that discuss it being applied in different ways, including virtually. See also the last link to another activity that would make a great follow-up: It Depends!

0 comments 0 reposts

Humans think in metaphors (which vary across cultures)

For more advanced students capable of thinking critically about the underlying cultural metaphors that lurk in our subconscious and come out in language, this activity is great. It's probably too advanced for younger students or those at the very beginning of language study, though.

0 comments 0 reposts

Speaking of stereotypes...

If you are looking for a way to get students to recognize and address stereotypes, this is a basic activity for changing stereotypes into generalizations. 

0 comments 0 reposts

Send students to the web

There are great cultural learning web resources out there. Some are proprietary and have associated costs (see Country Navigator as an example). The Hofstede website tool is free, but I always caution teachers against unintentionally reinforcing stereotypes with its use. That's why I recommend you check out this tool, which has suggestions for how to use the website to best effect. 

0 comments 0 reposts

Looking for a good worksheet?

Culture mapping gets students to think about their own cultural values, which can be helpful both for self-awareness and in preparation to interact with someone from another language background. There are a ton of activities in the HubICL related to cultural values. TIP: Go to the toolbox and search for the word "values", or click on Tags under the Discover menu and search for values there.

0 comments 0 reposts

A great kinesthetic activity

Language Envelopes takes a lot of effort to put together, but boy is it worth it! I love seeing students creatively trying to arrange objects into categories and eventually coming to the conclusion that semantic and other linguistic categories are constructed rather than natural (and one of many options). There is also a virtual version that uses Jamboard, if your learners are not physically with you.

0 comments 0 reposts

Comfort with discomfort

Part of openness, or the willingness to interact across cultural differences, is tolerance for discomfort (social, emotional, mental, physical), so activities like this can be helpful for students to become more self-aware and more skilled at managing uncomfortable interactions/situations.

0 comments 0 reposts

Great video to develop Openness

One of my favorite media activities uses the TED talk "The Danger of a Single Story". It is highly engaging and can be used to inspire openness to multiple narratives and perspectives. Check out the HubICL tool for discussion prompts and links in a complete lesson plan.

0 comments 0 reposts

The SALTO Youth Toolbox

Annette Benson pulled this toolbox into one of her collections, with lots of concrete details about where to find elements of the SALTO collection in the HubICL, so I am passing along that resource to you here.

0 comments 0 reposts

Icebreakers with physical props

For those of you who like to give your students something physical to manipulate, these experiential tools are great for icebreakers as well as debriefing learning. My absolute favorite is the Mini-metaphor set, so that is the one I linked here. Click Related Tools for other similar products, and check out under Links the video I made explaining how I like to use these.

0 comments 0 reposts

Icebreakers that highlight culture

Two of my favorite culturally focused icebreakers are Voices from the Past and the Name Game. You can read what I wrote about them in this TESOL collection or visit them directly in the toolbox. Both are great in diverse groups but also can be fruitful in more homogenous language classrooms.

0 comments 0 reposts

Icebreakers

In any collection for teachers I like to include a few icebreakers that are appropriate to the teaching context. Many teachers overlook the teaching potential of icebreakers, which are useful for more than having students get to know each other and can be a great source of cultural knowledge or at least an opportunity for self-awareness development. That said, there are some caveats to icebreakers, and I think this blog highlighted in Annette Benson's collection on Icebreakers that Teach is good food for thought. While you are there, check out the rest of Annette's handy collection!

0 comments 0 reposts