RAISING CULTURAL AWARENESS IN EFL/ESL IN THE CLASSROOMS IN THE REPUBLIC OF MACEDONIA
Understanding a foreign language does not mean just understanding the grammar, the phonology and the lexis. It also means understanding certain characteristics of the culture. Language without culture is unthinkable, and so is culture without language. “It is an additional change that is expressed through the use of language”. (Farnia, Rozina: 243) In the teaching process, future teachers of English have to master the target culture for a successful mastering of the language they are teaching. They have to make sure that their students master and become bilingual not just in the linguistic expressions but also in the literature and culture part. The aim of learning a foreign language is to master both the linguistic expressions and the cultural elements incorporated in the language.
“Culture in language learning is not an expandable fifth skill, tacked on, so to speak, to the teaching of speaking, listening, reading and writing. It is always in the background, right from day one, ready to unsettle the good language learners when they expect it least, making evident the limitations of their hard-won communicative competence, challenging their ability to make sense of the world around them.” (Thanasoulas, 2001).
The aim of the paper was to explore the methods and techniques used in raising the cultural awareness in schools with students of Macedonian who are studying to become proficient teachers of English in elementary schools in Bitola, Macedonia. The underlying and longterm aim is to make them aware of the existence of the other (target culture) in studying all level of the target language- phrasal verbs, tenses, grammatical categories, sociolects and many other language and literature aspects.
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