Teach English in Longtian XiAng - Chongqing

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Cultural Sensitivity I believe that the most important aspect of teaching is to know your students and learn about their culture. If teachers are unable to relate course content to the lives of students, the students are less likely to be interested in learning and less likely to be motivated to learn English. The following quote illustrates the importance for teachers to react and respond to different cultures in a positive way: ?Modeling in culturally responsive teaching is a moral imperative and a professional necessity? (Geneva Gay 2010, page 215). Teachers are often the models for student reactions to new or unfamiliar situations in the classroom. If a teacher demonstrates culturally negligent behavior, the students will notice this and possibly respond in similar ways. For example, someone teaching English in the Middle East would need to be especially careful on religion in the classroom. While it?s almost second nature to many Americans to wish people ?Merry Christmas? and ?Happy New Year? in latter months of the year, these statements may offend someone of a different religion or someone who follows the Islamic calendar instead. Teachers, therefore, learn quickly to ?filter? their comments and content in a culturally sensitive manner. Another aspect of cultural sensitivity deals with different types of things that each culture treasures and identifies with. While several of these things are generalizations and cannot always be applied to each student, it?s still important for teachers to be familiar with the aspects of culture and how to use them inside of the classroom. A major feature of culture is language and communication. For instance, within the united states many African American communities use Ebonics, a ?slang? version of English. This presumably happens in many, if not all, languages as different regions and communities alter the language. Teachers should try to familiarize themselves with the local colloquium and use it as an example when teaching aspects of English. A lesson that addresses this would likely be for an upper-level EFL classroom who are learning more of the intricacies of the English language - students could create two different conversations, one ?formal? conversation that might happen in a professional setting and a ?normal? conversation that might happen between two friends. The second conversation would likely include slang phrases and less focus on ?proper? English. If students are aware of the different uses of language, they are able to differentiate between the situations in which each type of language is most appropriate. These are only two ways in which cultural sensitivity can impact an English teacher. If a teacher is fortunate, they will receive some sort of cultural training prior to starting their new job that outlines the basic cultural courtesies and insults and actions to avoid. Teachers can also learn about the culture by experiencing it first hand - by living in the area a few weeks, by observing other classrooms, by learning the native language, by learning about the area?s history, etc. The more teachers know about the students? culture and lives, the more of an impact they can make.