ENHANCING TEACHING IN THE FSL CLASSROOM THROUGH CULTURAL AWARENESS: RESEARCH AND PRACTICAL APPLICATION
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With the undeniable presence of multiculturalism in Canada and the rising globalization of the world, it becomes increasingly important to develop intercultural competence in the second language classroom. The objective of this project was twofold: first, to review the existing literature on cross-cultural awareness and foreign language learning and second, to develop a framework for applicable materials to support and promote intercultural competence in the Ontario French as a Second Language Program. For the purposes of my project I first surveyed the literature related to the importance of culture in foreign language learning. I then reviewed literature concerning goals, frameworks, assessment, materials and strategies related to intercultural competence in order to determine appropriate cultural approaches in the second language classroom. Finally, based on my findings and the Grade 9 Core French curriculum objectives, I developed a practical application in the form of a cultural portfolio. The main themes revealed through the development of cultural activities for student use in the FSL classroom include the promotion of cross-cultural awareness, self-reflection and respect for others regardless of their beliefs or practices.