This post may sound like I am contradicting a previous post of March 13th, “Integrated vs Discrete Skills ESL Courses: Advantages of Discrete Skills” Despite my support for segregated skills in general, an integrated skills course with higher-level students who are more homogeneous in ability can be effective and practical.
For an integrated skills 1 course to be effective and engaging to the students, the subject should be something which is inherently appealing to the majority of the students. After all, the students will be spending the course time reading, writing, and talking about the subject.
One subject which has been enthusiastically received by both students and instructors is culture, and more specifically, differences in cultures and the reason for these differences.
Some examples of these are:
-Why are people in western cultures more likely than people from eastern cultures to smile at a stranger standing at a bus stop than?
-In a study of 4-year-olds, why did the Asian children spontaneously share their candy with another child but the American children only reluctantly share when asked.