Culture is sometimes referred to as the 'fifth skill' after speaking, writing, listening and reading. It seems to be one of those topics which is difficult to be 'concrete' about - what do we mean exactly by culture, and how is it relevant for us as language teachers and the learners in our classrooms? English is increasingly (and will continue to be so for a while yet) at the heart of globalisation - globalisation of commerce, the arts, education ... it is the language people from all sorts of different backgrounds (i.e. cultures) use to communicate. As teachers, in addition to understanding our own learners, we need to understand who they are likely to communicate with in the future. Are they likely to be globally mobile, or more likely to be communicating with other English speakers in their own country?
In this workshop, we will consider all of this, and also take a look at a series of videos on the Premier Skills English website, and think about how they can be useful to you in integrating 'culture' into your classroom.
You can download all the materials from the workshop in the downloads section on the right. You can complete some of the materials online by taking a look at the activities in the activities section, and if you have any questions or comments about the workshop we would be happy to hear from you. You can add your comments in the discuss section. We hope you enjoy the workshop.
Workshop on Culture
The following activities on the topic of culture are intended to help you think about what you learnt from the video.
The British Council and Premier League would like to know what you think about the Premier Skills English website. We’d be very grateful if you could take a few minutes to complete the following questionnaire.
Please tick one box to indicate the extent to which you agree or disagree with the following statements about the Premier Skills English materials that you have used on this website.
What do you think?
How important is culture in your lessons?
How would you describe the role of culture in the teaching of English?
Do you think your learners will need to communicate in English with people from different cultures and backgrounds? Why/Why not?
What kind of materials do you use to raise awareness of different cultures?