Here are some lesson plans and strategies I presented at the 3rd Symposium of Spanish as a Second Language (III Taller de ELE) at KU Leuven (June, 2015) on how to promote intercultural dialogue in the foreign language classroom. As you get settled for this new academic year, here are some ideas you might want to integrate from day one in your classroom.

As I plan my lessons, I try to set up not only linguistic and communicative goals but also intercultural objectives.

The intercultural objectives of these activities are:

Symbols and Associations (can be done from day one)
Identify symbols and associations related to the students’ own culture and the target culture (Spain on the example).
Evaluate the origin of some of these symbols.
Recognize and identify possible stereotypes associated with the target culture.
Challenge certain stereotyped visions.

Netflix in Latin America
Identify the challenges Netflix faced when entering the Latin American market.
Identify the causes of piracy in Latin America.
Evaluate the strategies of Netflix, an American company, to expand in the Latin American market.

MOOCs for interdisciplinary, intercultural learning
Encourage students to take MOOCs of their interest. There are great MOOCs out there that feature interdisciplinary topics.
Encourage them to engage in intercultural exchange with students around the world who are taking the MOOC.

You can find the full presentation here.

How do you encourage your language students to reflect upon intercultural issues from day one in your classroom? Please share!

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