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Teachers in the English-as-a-Second-Language (ESL) Program of Catholic Charities Immigration and Refugee Services have recognized the need to foster intercultural awareness and understanding as well as language learning in their classrooms. Discussion of cultural traditions and holiday celebrations in the countries of origin of Central Pennsylvania ESL students may be one way to foster appreciation of diversity and recognition of common experiences and values on the part of these students. This booklet uses holidays and traditional observances in five countries (Eritrea, India, Mexico, Russia, and Vietnam) as instructional material for ESL classes. Each section begins with a fact sheet and map, giving basic information on population, geography, and major holidays; those described in this booklet are marked with an asterisk. Information on holiday celebrations was obtained primarily from current ESL students. Teachers may use the lessons as a springboard to encourage discussion and interaction among ESL students from different cultures and backgrounds. The exercises that accompany the lessons are designed for beginning and intermediate ESL students.

Descriptors: Adult Education, Class Activities, Cultural Awareness, English (Second Language), Foreign Countries, Foreign Culture, Holidays, Lesson Plans, Literacy Education, Nontraditional Education, Religious Holidays, Social History

Autor: Berg, Martha L.


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