Module two works very well with very little adaptation for ESL students at the intermediate to advanced levels. There are four additional lessons that can be used for teaching culture bumps outside of the Toolkit.
Vocabulary Words for the focus activity before the video
Moment – minute
Hospitality – To be nice with people who visit your home
Daily lifestyle – what people do everyday – for example, what people eat for each
meal or what they do for fun
Effective – Good
Intercultural – two or more cultures
Interpersonal – two or more people
Interaction – talking
Brian and Aziz: a Mini-movie
In this movie, Brian (from the USA) and Aziz (from the Middle East)
are two young men who study together. As the movie begins, Brian is
going to visit Aziz at Aziz’s home. They both hope to learn more about
the other one.
However, their culture bumps prevent them from becoming friends.
As you watch the movie, try to identify as many culture bumps for
both young men as possible.
*culture bump: cultural difference
Expectation – what you think will happen
Relationship – connection
Bump – to touch accidentally
The Culture Bump: A Reading
While this reading and the following discussion questions offer very
little problem for ESL students, the following vocabulary words can be
Fit together – go together well, with no problem
Interfere – have a problem with
Skewed – unrealistic, not true
Interact – to talk with, to be in relationship with someone
Hasty – quick
Exit – to leave
Interpret – understand
Blind spot – to not know something and not know that you don’t know
Emanate – to come from
Ornate – very fancy
Koran – the holy book for Islam
Vague – not clear
Confirm – to be sure
Eliminate – to take out, to not have
Perspective – point of view
Observation: Judgment or Description?
This activity is easily done with all level of ESL students. However,
this is an opportune moment to put up the two photos, the elderly
woman on the four wheeler and the Korean wedding and have the
students generate a list of vocabulary words. For example, words
such as house shoes, helmet, roof, handlebars, gloves, railing etc. This
would also be a good time to teach the appropriate way to address or
talk about older people in the United States.
Page 14 is easily done in pairs or small groups. Another way is to print
out the different sentences in a large font, place each one on a
separate piece of paper and place them around the room. Let the
students go through and answer in pairs and then compare their
answers with other pairs.
The trivia cards are easily done with some vocabulary explanation.
Trivia (the game)
Counter – in a store
To frown – Using the face to show displeasure or unhappiness
Elderly – a polite word to describe people who are 70 years old or older
To emerge – to come out of
To grasp – to hold
Elbow – the place in the middle of the arm where the arm bends
Disgust – to dislike
Request – to ask for
“to show regard for” – to show respect for
consideration – respect
to approach – to come close to
“to feel hurt” – to feel unhappy because someone says or does something unkind
assigned – to appoint, to tell someone to do something
to adjust – to adapt
to be withdrawn – to not want to talk or participate
elegance – dignified beauty
spiritual – having to do with the spirit
to offend – to be disrespectful
to poke – to hit with the finger
double-take- to look at something/someone twice because you are so surprised
to lean forward – to bow
the corner of your eye – the side of your eye
route – the way to go someplace
curb – the side of the street –
authority – the one in charge, the leader
inclusive – to include
acknowledge – to tell someone that they did well
Grammar: Connection words and Writing
Find the following connections in the reading on the Culture Bump
However, Again, Therefore, Likewise, Again, Thus,
Re-write the sentence using the connection word:
Write your own sentences using each of the connection words.
What are other grammar structures in the essay that you can identify or need to
With people from your own culture, create your own culture bump
trivia card. Make sure your example is a specific example and that your
explanation includes the common value. After looking at all of the
culture bumps, make a list of common values and situations. Check
your list with the list of common values and common situations in Module Five.
More Resources for teaching the Culture Bump Concept
1. Go to www.culturebump.com\cultureb-world.htm
Click on the website entitled Chinese/American culture bump
(Shopping). This is the best explanation for culture bumps.
This website is self-explanatory.
2. Go to www.culturebump.com\cultureb-world.htm
Click on the video entitled Chinese, Indian, Generational, American Culture Bumps
(Greetings). This videos shows a variety of greetings with a group of university students
and their bumps with one another. Their explanation helps clarify the nuances of
culture bumps, not only with different cultures, but with generational differences also.
Going over the vocabulary list first will enhance the students comprehension. It is an
excellent source of authentic English language.
Hug – to put arms around another person
Awkward – Not comfortable
Clash – culture bump
Taken aback – surprised
Brushed aside- ignored
Small Talk – talking about
Mingle- mix with
Braced myself- prepared myself
To block-to prevent
Invade her personal space- get close to
Back away from- go away from
Gender- male or female
Culture barrier- cultural wall
Commonalities-things that are the same
Follow up with role plays of greetings between the groups
in the classroom
3. A complete lesson for advanced level classes can be built around the
video of the conversation between Karen and Miguel- a northamerican
woman and a Venezuelan male. The video is used in conjunction
with the script entitled, “Karen and Miguel: A script of thought
process. This lesson introduces the concept of a culture bump as
well as perceptions, human commonalities and interior and exterior
Download the Script and make copies for pairs of students. In each
pair one student will read the “inner thoughts” of Karen and the other
will read the “inner thoughts” of Miguel. The video is cued to stop
at intervals in which the thoughts are read. Half way through the
video, the culture bump occurs. When the students have completed
watching the video, facilitate their reaction. Then go to
www.culturebup.com\cultureb-world.htm and click on the powerpoint
to introduce the concepts embedded in culture bump theory.
Finally, click on the essay entitled Why are we different/How are we the same. This
explains the author’s culture bump.
Follow up with students preparing their own essays on their culture
bumps, using the Archer essay as a model.
Karen and Miguel Script of Thought Process PDF
4. Living with Strangers in the USA was written for advanced level students. A PDF can be purchased at www.culturebump.com/store