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Teaching English as an International Language: The Role of

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Teaching English as an
International Language:
An Intercultural Dimension
Gateway 3
Cindy Lee
Contents
What is an International Language
English as an International Language
The Role of Cultural Learning in EIL
Types of Cultural Content
Reflective Approach in Practice (I) (II)(III)
Conclusion
Cindy Lee
Preface
This session is based on Sandra Lee
McKay’s work Teaching English as an
International Language (2003).
In this session, we will see how to
introduce interculturality into English
Language Teaching.
This is still a new field. Any suggestion
or comment will be extremely welcome!
Cindy Lee
What is an
International Language?
It is a language used by the majority of
people from different
Nationalities
or
Ethnical
Backgrounds
Cindy Lee
English as an
International Language (EIL)
Main Characteristics:
Cross borders
Primary Function:
Enable speakers to share their ideas and
cultural views
Cultural Dimension:
No longer connected to the culture of the
*Inner Circle Countries
(*Native English speaking countries: USA, UK, Canada, Australia, etc.)
Cindy Lee
The Role of Cultural Learning
in EIL
Goal
Establish a sphere of Interculturality
Objectives
пЃ¬
пЃ¬
пЃ¬
пЃ¬
Have understanding on other cultures
Appreciate cultural differences
Be able to share one’s own culture in English
Reflect one’s own culture to the others’
Cindy Lee
Types of Cultural Content in
TEIL
Target Culture
Source Culture
International
Culture
Textbook
Teacher
Source Culture
Student
Source Culture
Cindy Lee
Reflective Approach in
Practice (I)-1
While teaching target cultural text…..
Example – A Korean teacher’s experience:
One Textbook Exercise asks students to:
-Look at photos of various American scenes
-Depict and Match them with different periods of
American history
пЃ¬ Problems:
-Students found
the exercise extremely difficult
the activity irrelevant to the purpose of learning English
-The teacher experienced
limited knowledge in American History
difficulty instructing the text content
Cindy Lee
пЃ¬
Reflective Approach in
Practice (I)-2
The Korean Teacher’s Approach…..
Replaced the photos in the text with some of
various periods in Korea
Followed the format in the book
Encouraged his students to reflect on their
own culture
Results
• Overcame the difficulty in instruction
• Increased students’ interest of learning the
language
• Helped students use English to compare and
contrast two historical cultures
Cindy Lee
Reflective Approach in
Practice (II)-1
While teaching source cultural text…..
Example – A Japanese teacher’s experience:
пЃ¬
Content in the Textbook:
-Ask students to describe annual Japanese events
-The events include Children’s Day Festival,
traditional arts like Haiku, Noh comedy, etc.
Problems:
-How could source cultural text establish a sphere of
interculturality?
-How did students consider their own culture in
relation to another?
Cindy Lee
Reflective Approach in
Practice (II)-2
The Japanese Teacher’s Approach…..
Asked individual pupil to describe what specific aspects
of their culture mean to them
Then, encouraged students to consider how they would
explain elements of their own culture to foreigners
Purposes
• The approach firstly demonstrated the variance within one
culture
• Second, it promoted a view of culture as difference
Results
• Pupils had opportunity to learn more about their own
culture
• Pupils learned the language needed to explain the cultural
Cindy Lee
elements in English
Reflective Approach in
Practice (III)-1
While teaching international cultural text…..
Example – Material presents English as well
as non-English speaking countries
Content in the Textbook:
-The texts provide various cultural information
пЃ¬ Problems:
-Students may be uninterested or puzzled by the
information in the text
-The teacher may not have access to additional
information needed to explain some of the cultural
references
пЃ¬
Cindy Lee
Reflective Approach in
Practice (III)-2
An Approach Recommended…..
Extend the text in which a bilingual user interacts with
other speakers of English
Exemplify the manner in which English can be used
internationally
Examples can include lexical, grammatical, and
phonological variation in context
Illustrate cross-cultural pragmatics and appropriateness
Purposes
Provide a basis for students to gain a fuller
understanding of how English today serves a great
variety of international purposes
Encourage students to reflect on their own local and
global uses of English as an International Language
Cindy Lee
Conclusion
English is situated at the interface of foreign
and native cultural values to a greater extent
than any other language because of its
greater use around the world.
In TEIL context, it is important for teachers to
consider how to create a sphere of
interculturality.
Try to draw students’ attention to their own
history and culture, as well as to those of the
target culture, in order to explain and contrast
the differences.
Cindy Lee
- End Thank You !
Cindy Lee
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