absolutely out there Back in March we talked about the Languages Out There approach by Jason West which consists of preparing students in the classroom and then sending them out with mini tasks which involve interacting with the general public outside the classroom. For those classes not based in English speaking countries Jason suggests organising students to interact with English speakers online. I spoke to Jason about how he developed that side of the approach and how practical it could be.
absolutely online After speaking to Jason I decided to ask Richard Wood of Verge in China how he applies the Languages Out There approach in an environment with very few native speakers available to practice with. While speaking to Richard Wood I realised that the Language Out There approach is simply what a motivated person might do and what Jason West’s methods do is to enable less motivated or less confident learners to make progress.
absolutely voluntary I met Rachad Izzat from Rabat in Morocco at the Anna Lindh Foundation Forum in Barcelona in March. Rachad is Programme Manager at Chantiers Sociaux Marocains which organises volunteer work all over Morocco and he explained how voluntary work lead to intercultural exchange without needing to leave Morocco.If you wanted to get involved with CSM you could for example sign up to a trekking project this September or October staying with local hosts, learning a little Arabic and being shown around some of the main historical sites and then trekking in the Atlas mountains. You will find more information on their Facebook page.
In this show we’re going to go to the UK and China to find out about opportunities for learning more about intercultural communication. We’ll be meeting Richard Wood, one of the founders of Verge, a cross-cultural communication company based in Hefei, China. We’ll also be meeting with Adrian Pilbeam who runs two courses to help people get started in intercultural training and if you’re lucky you can get these for free!
absolutely trained So let’s start with the main topic of this show which is about how you can get a solid grounding in how to do intercultural training by attending one of 2 five-day courses which is usually held in Bath, England but has also been held in other countries by special request. I talked with Adrian Pilbeam, one of the main instigators of the course and also one of the main facilitators about what you can learn in five days.
absolutely comfortable The need for intercultural training is a growing one especially in the economic powerhouse which is China. So for my next piece I contacted Richard Wood, one of the founders of Verge, a cross-cultural communication company based in Hefei, China. Richard’s company has come up with the idea of Comfortable Communication. So we find out what that means.
absolutely free It’s obvious that there is a huge potential demand for this sort of training and if you liked the sound of the course which Adrian Pilbeam at LTS Training was offering earlier then if you are based in Europe there is even more good news as Adrian’s courses could be ‘absolutely free’ if you are based in Europe as you could then get it funded through the Grundtvig scheme.
absolutely uncomfortable And if you’re in any doubt that intercultural training might be a good idea then you should take note of this cautionary tale from Richard Wood of Verge. Here he is describing an example when he was absolutely uncomfortable! We’ll be hearing more from Richard in a future show about how he trains his Chinese students to avoid these uncomfortable situations. In the meantime I hope that you are on your way to comfortable communication.
You may be pleased to know that this is absolutely your last chance to vote for us in the European Podcast awards as voting closes at the end of July! Unfortunately we have no way of knowing how well or badly we are doing but I would like to extend a big thank you to all those of you who have voted for us so far. You can leave us a comment about what you liked or what we could do better here on our website and you can also make a suggestion about who or what we should feature in future shows.
The next show will be coming to you from Germany with Laurent Borgmann on August 6th so until then stay tuned!