There is no doubt, we are now living in a global village. The boundaries between states have faded, and each day more and more people travel around the world to study, work or migrate to another country for a better life.
Because of this, teachers work every day in multicultural classrooms, where the students may come from different countries, speak different languages, and have limited knowledge of their teacher’s as well as their peers’ cultures.
This is when the development of Intercultural Awareness and Intercultural Competence in a classroom becomes crucial. On the one hand, Intercultural Awareness refers to having an understanding of one’s own and other cultures, as well as to being able to appreciate the similarities and differences between them. On the other hand, Intercultural Competence helps members of different societies and cultural backgrounds to communicate successfully and appropriately among them.
This course will offer teachers an insight into the importance of attitudes such as empathy, curiosity, and openness toward other cultures. By reflecting on these concepts, and practicing effective strategies to bring such reflection into action, the participants will acquire a set of practical tools to improve their Intercultural Competence and achieve successful communication in multicultural contexts.
By engaging in a variety of practical activities, participants will also learn to serve as mediators and to familiarize their learners with Intercultural Competence. This will help them create bridges between the different cultures co-existing in their classroom, and establish an inclusive atmosphere, where students feel comfortable, accepted, and at home. By the end of the course, participants will become familiar with very productive techniques, strategies, and games on how to introduce and teach Intercultural Competence in the intercultural classroom.
Concept by: Irena Papa
The course will help the participants to:
- Realize the importance of introducing Intercultural Competence in multicultural classrooms;
- Discover teaching methods that are more appropriate for intercultural classrooms;
- Lead conversation and dialogue in intercultural settings;
- Apply different techniques for introducing students to different cultures;
- Master several activities to make students from different cultures interact with equity and respect;
- Enhance students’ cultural awareness.
Day 1 – Introduction to the course and to the different definition of culture
- Introduction to the course, the school, and the external week activities;
- Icebreaker activities;
- Presentations of the participants’ schools.
Introduction to the concept and different definitions of culture
- Open discussion: Share your experience of teaching an intercultural classroom – cultural gaps: challenges and barriers;
- The cultural iceberg;
- Participants’ expectations for the course.
Day 2 – How to introduce Intercultural Competence in the intercultural classroom
- Models of Intercultural Competence;
- Elements of Intercultural Competence – The Intercultural Competences Tree;
- Practical activities to get to know and understand each others’ cultures: we speak and behave differently because we belong to different cultures;
- Different cultures, different world views, different attitude.
Day 3 – Approaches and tools for developing intercultural competence
- Selecting the right tools for developing intercultural competence;
- Story circles and intercultural competence development;
- How to implement story circles in the intercultural classroom to foster cultural differences – guidelines for using story circles/ the role of the facilitator;
- Participants’ involvement in story circles with the aim to become aquainted and be ready to implement them in their classrooms.
Day 4 – Strategies and techniques for teaching about cultural differences
- The three keys to Intercultural Competence;
- Dimensions of Diversity;
- Diversity Wheel activities.
Day 5 – Improving intercultural and cross-cultural communication in the classroom
- Intercultural communication vs. Cross-cultural communication;
- The obstacles to Intercultural Communication:
- Culture shock
- Culture clash
Intercultural learning exercises:
- Recognizing culture shock – Culture shock checklist;
- Cross – cultural communication skills checklist;
- Explore and implement the RADAR technique.
Day 6 – Course closure & cultural activities
- Course evaluation: round up of acquired competences, feedback, and discussion;
- Awarding of the course Certificate of Attendance;
- Excursion and other external cultural activities.
The schedule describes likely activities but may differ significantly based on the trainer delivering the specific session and the requests of the participants.
If you would like to discuss a specific topic, please indicate it at least 4 weeks in advance. Course modifications are subject to the trainer’s discretion.
The number and schedule of the cultural activities depend on the location, not the course; further information is available on each location webpage. The trainer will send you the definitive course schedule approximately two weeks before the course.