This school year is rapidly drawing to a close, so I will take this opportunity to wish you all a very peaceful summer and to reassure you that the ELB is going to still benefit from new thoughts in the summer, just like before. After all, life’s lessons never seem to go on holiday like we do. They are always there, for us to take our pick and share. 🙂
I am writing this post below, to share some thoughts with you, yes, as I have been known to do, on prejudice and intolerance, the lack of which will help us maintain and cultivate broad-mindedness. Or open-mindedness, if you will. 🙂 Now, what is different about this post is that, in truth, it hasn’t happened yet, by which I mean that the activities I will describe and the links I am about to recommend below are going to be put to work with the students in one of my adult learners groups later today for the first time. Imagine their surprise when I will disclose to them the existence of this article at the end of the class. 🙂 I will be back with impressions in a little while, so hang on.
“Things Should Be as I Think”
“I Know Best About This (Whatever This Might Be)”
The first two activities I have come up with sprang from a dialog I witnessed at a class one week ago between two of my students. The general topic of the dialogue was good manners around the world, and the more specific aspect discussed was ways of spending Christmas in Poland. I was surprised to discover how certain one of these students was about THE way of spending Christmas in Poland, the one and only PROPER way. The discussion turned out to be very insightful, as it showed that even open-minded people can have strict ideas and views on certain topics. There is, or there may be prejudice, my dears, even in areas we least expect it to appear. The good part is that once exposed hovering around some ideas in our minds, it can easily go out in a splash, like a candle blown out by a kid at bedtime.
– that you were offered an all-inclusive opportunity to travel to an area in your country or to an area that you have never visited beforein a poor country. What would you choose and why?
– that you were living in a slum (a poor urban area in a big city, sometimes found in developing countries). How would you feel? What would your celebrations/ anniversaries look like? Would you miss anything?
– that you are a CNN reporter who is given an assignment to interview one of the following people: a trainer from India, an Australian writer or a famous person in your country. Who would you choose to interview and why?
Use the words below to frame or express your own idea about your outlook on the world, on personal success, values and lifestyle:
passion (a sense of) purpose humour the voice within generations
inhibitions failures disabilities problems
(passing on) legacies (ways of )speaking sensitivity (to various issues)
Would you cross out any of these words as unnecessary? How about adding anything else to the ones you selected? Explain.
Watch the recently published TED video below (one of the 29,409 vids currently on the TEDx Youtube channel), in which the stand-up Indian comedian from Bangalore, Sandeep Rao, uses the concepts in Activity 2 above, to shape his own view of life and living.
Do his views differ from yours? In what ways?
This is another video to watch and analyse, which is the second part in a CNN series called Talk Asia. It is a very special video to me, because it is a brief, 9-minute guided tour of the Indian universe described in one of my favourite books, Shantaram, a tour given by the author himself, the Australian-born, controversial and very charming Gregory David Roberts.
There are a zillion questions I could think of asking after watching this video, but the ones that I would probably go for at my class, a few hours from now, are:
- Can Christians, Muslims and Hindus celebrate together? Can people, in other words, celebrate together if their beliefs, background, and outlooks are very different?
- Would you like to be able to be “adopted” by a society that is very different from the one you were born in?
- Do you think you would be able to “adopt” someone who comes from a society very different from yours? How would you welcome them into your world as you know it?
- How long do you think a society can last? Can societies disappear completely or do they change into something else? What can they change into, if they do and how are these changes possible?
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Enjoy and be back for extras!
Good day to you all!