Culture and Communication in the Classroom<br />
Aim<br />Understand the broader context of debates on culture<br />Develop culturally appropriate learning and teaching practices<br />
Underpinning Themes<br />3 themes are inextricably linked discussion on culture in the classroom<br /> - Culture<br /> - Communication<br /> - Customs of Learning<br />For example culture is transformed through customs of learning<br />Enables us to understand approaches to learning<br />
Communication<br />Needs to be viewed within its context<br />Language/communication patterns can be dependent upon context<br />e.g. acronyms can be specific to an institution<br />Communication patterns differ even more radically across countries<br />Communication patterns can make you feel like an outsider<br />
Reflect upon a teaching context<br />Are there certain forms of language that are appropriate and others that are not?<br />Are there expectations about what the student and teacher bring to the classroom?<br />How might the rules of ‘politeness’ (linguistically) apply to the classroom?<br />How is ‘silence’ perceived in the classroom?<br />
Assumptions<br />Different perceptions of the role of the teacher?<br /> - to control the environment/learning<br /> - facilitate/guide learning<br />Different perceptions of silence?<br /> - a sign of non-engagement?<br /> - a sign of reflection?<br />
Appropriate Language:Communication + miscommunication<br />Taboo language is sometimes culturally situated<br />Communicative competence is based in culture<br />Communicative competence is more important than linguistic ability<br />There is a social etiquette about how we use language in different contexts<br />
Conversation<br />Cultural and social etiquettes exist around beginnings, middles and ends of conversations<br />Differences in how we address people in different contexts<br />Differences in conversational norms can be on the grounds of ethnicity, social class, gender, age etc<br />
Approaches to learning<br />Cultural background can determine views on different teaching methods and the value placed on them<br />Collaborative learning may not be considered meaningful if the student perceives the teacher as the holding wisdom in the classroom<br /> Teaching methods need to be discussed<br />
Finally<br />Need to build on the experience of students<br />Must recognise that the different experiences will shape approaches to learning<br />
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