Viewing entries tagged with 'culture'

What it Means to be Canadian

Posted by Nancy Callan on 5 May 2016 | 1 Comments

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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has a habit of defining who we are as a country by referring to our highest values. He recently said, "I really do want to highlight that Canada is a country where we look out for our neighbours and we are there for each other in difficult times. And certainly in Fort McMurray, the difficult times they are going through right now is something that we are going to unite around."

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Having Fun with New Canada Jigsaws CLB 5-6

Posted by Nancy Callan on 4 March 2016 | 0 Comments

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Field testing of Callan's New Canada Jigsaws has been completed with over 35 field testers from all across the country. Here are a couple highlights of some of the fun field testers had. 

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Reading on a Thrift Store Business Model

Posted by Nancy Callan on 21 March 2014 | 0 Comments

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Thrift stores are becoming more popular with middle aged clothes shoppers. Seems if you don't want to wear yoga attire to work, thrift stores are some of the best sources for clothing made from a wider variety of fabrics.

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Soft Skill: Who Picks Up the Bill?

Posted by Nancy Callan on 21 June 2013 | 0 Comments

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We often think of bargaining language as confined to situations like a garage sale or to the purchase of larger items like cars or homes. One of the most common negotiations most people will engage in at some point is who will pay the bill in a restaurant. Not only are there language and soft skills specific to this situation, many cultural assumptions are thrown into the mix. Countries, as well as the cultures within them, differ in their norms about who should pick up the tab and when. Learning the related idioms and other bargaining language but not cracking this cultural code and developing the soft skills to successfully navigate this interaction can lead to social awkwardness as exemplified in the story below. 

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Cultural Differences in Gift Giving

Posted by Nancy Callan on 11 November 2012 | 5 Comments

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One of the most important things we can do as ESL teachers is to help our students crack the cultural code. Gift giving has a lot of unspoken rules which may seem inscrutable to newcomers. Unconvinced? See if you were aware of these cultural attitudes to gift giving in other cultures:

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