Using Interconnected Texts to Highlight Culture in the Foreign Language Classroom
- Author(s): Smith, Maya
- et al.
Published Web Locationhttps://doi.org/10.5070/L25213283
SLA research on foreign language pedagogy has long demonstrated that culture is essential to language learning. However, presenting culture in the language classroom poses certain problems. For learners, there is a tendency to stereotype others and to rely excessively on the teacher. For teachers, there is a tendency to transmit isolated facts without elaboration and to associate a target language with a single monolithic culture. This article presents a pedagogical approach to culture that not only exposes students to networks of authentic texts but also motivates them to research for themselves the many subtleties of the target culture. By learning how to approach a network of texts, students gain deeper insight into the target culture and develop their ability to interpret texts that they will subsequently encounter on their own. This approach will be illustrated by a detailed lesson plan as well as an analysis of the responses of students who engaged with these materials in an advanced intermediate level French class.