Session 1 – Promoting cultural understanding

Stage of the project

Working phase

Aims

Introduction to culture as:

  1. manifestations
  2. relations: Values, norms

Settings

Brainstorm, presentation, group work and reflection

Duration: 60-90 min. depending on the number of participants

Learning Outcome

Understanding culture and its basic elements

Activities

1. Lead-in (15-20 min.)

Brainstorm in plenary:

  1. Trainer writes on white/smart board, culture.
  2. Trainer asks participants “What words do you think of when you hear the word, culture?”
  3. Trainer encourages brainstorm by writing a relevant word, g. music, food
  4. Participants write on white board/smart board. (Participants are allowed here to write whatever they think is relevant without interference fromthe trainer.)

2. Definition (45 min.)

  1. Cultural manifestations

Group discussion of 4-6 participants: “Which of these cultural elements are fun/good/interesting to learn from other cultures?”

  • Trainer guides and engages participants in finding cultural manifestations from the brainstorm by giving examples i.e. language, music
  • Participants enlist relevant word i.e. language, art, music, dance, food, outfit, beliefs, traditions etc.
  1. Relations, values and norms
  • Values: The ideal and desirable behavior in the group. E.g., Loyalty, honesty, respect and love.

(Trainer engages participants in finding other values from the brainstorm.)

  • Relations and norms: The group’s shared rules for acting in accordance with the group’s values. E.g., giving one’s seat in the bus to an old person.

(Trainer engages participants in finding other examples of norms and traditions from the brainstorm.)

Recap (15. min)

Trainer guides Participants to formulate a simple definition of culture as:

  1.  manifestations of the cultural group
  2.  social relations, roles and norms based on the values of the cultural group