The cultures of the language we teach are so rich! When by teaching in the old way we convey to our students the message that they can’t learn the culture’s language, we effectively distance the culture from the child for life. The relationship of the child with the culture is no longer even neutral after sitting in some of our language classes.
What should be a bright place in the child’s life, a new culture with all its food and poetry and places and people and cool stuff, becomes inaccessible to the traditionally trained student. We throw the key to the culture away from the student, into the bushes, and tell him not to try to find it, while wasting hundreds of hours of their and our lives in the process.
This has been happening for at least a hundred years. Somehody has to stop that. Who will? We can’t go down the hallway and throttle that grammar teacher even though many of us have had the thought. But we can work hard at this TPRS stuff to get better at it.
Do it. Let your freak flag fly this week. Be radical. Go for it. Become a thief. Steal the hearts of your students through humor and good will. Open – don’t close off – those rich and vibrant cultures from your students. Talk about bad karma!