British Prescriptionism is so 1890's


Cultural diversity is not only a buzz phrase, it's the reality of the world in 2018. Those who do not embrace it will be the losers in this and future generations. This value and reality should be present in the ESL classroom as well. Unfortunately, it often is not. Textbooks are almost always anchored to one specific culture. In many cases, as with English File and everything that comes out of Cambridge Press and Oxford Press, it looks more like English propaganda than culturally relevant material. This poses a problem. Most students don't even realize they are not only being taught English, but they are also being fed a subtle and sometimes not so subtle form of propaganda.

If I had my way, which I don’t since I’m in a very structured school, I would use National Geographic’s “Life” series, supplemented by Cambridge Press’s Recycling English Grammar, Recycling English Vocabulary, and Ship or Sheep by Ann Baker for pronunciation. If I had more time, I would like to develop a curriculum based on One World English which embraces all cultures and focuses on the Global English concept, which is what students would most likely use.

The value of diverse cultural texts is essential if we wish to be inclusive to all learners of English. In my search so far, and I would love to be shown otherwise, a global English curriculum does not exist. What we have instead, is English English, American English, or some combination of the two. These approaches are unfortunately moored to the culture in which they are produced, inevitably leaving the majority behind.


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