Honors Theses

Date of Award

2016

Document Type

Undergraduate Thesis

Department

English

First Advisor

Karen Raber

Relational Format

Dissertation/Thesis

Abstract

For this study, I focused on the effective ways and benefits of teaching intercultural competence in schools. Without intercultural competence, children in the United States are unable to make a connection with the different cultures that surround them in the world. Basing my methods from Darla K. Deardorff Process Model of Intercultural Competence (256) and cultural reflection of folktales, I researched whether a child can connect to the world around them by comprehending a different culture more through interactive writing or informative reading. In order to answer this question, I conducted a two-part project to collect data. The first part is titled OneWorld Stories. This part connected two classes from different cultures by having them work together to write a fictional story. Students learned about the other class' culture through facts that created connections between their daily lives. The second part of the project consisted of reading aloud an informational text about a different culture by Carole P. Roman as a class. After each part, I administered a survey to students which asked questions in regards to the activities they did. It took 150 minutes to complete the entire project in the classroom. I compared the story written in the first part to folktales in different cultures to show insight on how the students' story reflects their culture in the same way that a folktale does. In conclusion, findings from this study suggested that students were more successful with learning intercultural competence through writing because that activity allowed the students to learn about a different culture through an interactive learning technique that overall resulted in a greater positive response.

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