With one of the groups that I teach at school we discuss culture only. We have done several different things during the term, like discussing the origins of the language, talking about Shakespeare, the Globe Theatre, etc. Our last project was Scotland.

Step 1 –  Webquest

I put the students into small groups and each group received an aspect of information about Scotland. For example: geography, literature, clothing, food and drinks, music or Mary, Queen of Scots. Students had about 20 minutes to gather as much information as they possibly could about their respective topics. As the group is at pre-intermediate level, browsing the net for information and comprehending authentic texts appeared to be quite a challenge for them.

After 20 minutes the spokesperson of each group had to present their findings for the rest of the class, who were taking notes.

Step 2 – Crossword

A crossword followed that the students had to do on the basis of the information they had just heard.

Step 3 – St Andrew’s Day

As the end of the month was approaching I picked a current holiday: St Andrew’s day. I took the basic facts about St Andrew http://www.scotland.org/features/fast-facts-about-saint-andrew-and-the-st-andrews-cross , cut the sentences up into words, each pair of students received 1 or 2 sentences and had to rearrange the words into sentences. We checked and discussed new vocabulary in a plenary with the whole of the class.

I had posted a video into students’ digital classroom and it was their homework to watch it as many times as they wished and put down new pieces of information they could make out of the video – for extra difficulty they had to fight the Scottish accent of the speaker!

In class again students discussed the information first in small groups then shared their findings with the rest of the class.

Step 4 – Consolidation

As the closing of the Scotland project students were put into groups again and had 10 minutes to find something interesting or important on the net about Scotland. They had to look for something that we hadn’t mentioned before. Some websites (Scotland guide, Country facts, The Telegraph, Norlaggan blog, The Scotland blog, Top 10 little known facts) had been provided in their digital classroombut they were allowed to refer to anything. They had to present their findings in not more than two minutes for the whole class. In the end the class voted on the most surprising fact (they were not allowed to vote on their own group).

For higher level classes a funny video clip on Scottish accent could follow.