Foreign Reactions to Japan as a Teaching Resource

Page No.: 
393
Writer(s): 
John Rucynski, Jr., Okayama University

 

One overlooked aspect of language teaching is the importance of also teaching culture. Communicating with people from different cultures involves not just linguistic competence, but also intercultural awareness. Additionally, cultural literacy about the target culture can improve fluency in the target language. Despite the role of culture in language teaching, there are obstacles to creating culture-rich language courses. First, identifying what the target culture is in EFL settings such as Japan can be a challenge. Second, traditional EFL coursebooks are often not designed to also sufficiently teach culture. One remedy to these issues is to first focus on the students’ own culture. Many students, however, are not certain as to what makes their own culture interesting or unique. In this paper, I examine using foreign reactions to Japan as a resource for helping Japanese students better understand and explain their own culture in English.

言語と文化の統合教育の試みにおいて、EFL教師はターゲット言語の文化についての習得に焦点を置く傾向がある。しかしながら、学生に英語で自国の文化の説明や議論をすることができるように支援していく必要性があることについては、あまり認識されていない。その要因として、関連教材が少ないため、このような授業に対する取り組みが難しくなっていることが考えられる。こうした背景にもとづいて、本稿では日本の大学の英語の授業の中で、日本文化に焦点を当てた授業の取り組みが可能になるような方法と教材について論じる。

 
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