You are on page 1of 7

Using Video in Cross-Cultural Understanding Class

Martinus Pranala

Culture may vary between one to another. Some cultures may be different from others or maybe the same. According to that situation, we are asked to understand culture as much as we can. One of many ways that help to understand another culture effectively is living in the real life. It means that we must go to another country that has a different culture from us. It is very effective than learn it from culture understanding class. The problems are: it highly cost and it cannot be guaranteed that we can live there for a long time because the food or other things. Other ways to learn the culture without going directly to the country is learning from the video. The video has been touted as a fruitful source for teaching culture as it presents students with an image of living, vibrant people (Shrum & Glisan, 1994, p. 249). Martinez-Gibson (1998) also points out that today's students are part of the television era and that they are therefore more visually oriented. Embedding video in cross-cultural understanding class helps students to understand the target culture more effectively without going directly to another country. The Definition Video is the selection and sequence of messages in an audiovisual context (Canning-Wilson, 2000). They also stated that considerable confidence is placed on the value of audio visual aids to enhance the learning of foreign languages.

Yet, there has been little empirical data and research to support the proposition that video facilitates in the learning of foreign languages. Video is categorized into two kinds. First is authentic videos and the second is instructional videos. Authentic videos include movies, television programs, and news broadcasts. Instructional videos include student workbooks, teacher guides, video transcript, and audiotapes (Stempleski, 1992) Why Should Video used in Cultural Understanding Class? The students in the modern era are used to watch video. They watch film, video or cartoon every day. They watch it from many sources such as: TV, YouTube or some Internet sources that provide a place to watch a video. Since the students used to watch video, why video shouldnt used as a connection or as a medium to teach cultural understanding. Vogely (1998, p.74) as stated in Carol (2000) said that: Video appears to be an excellent use of technology to convey contemporary cultural information using the target language. It provides immediate access to images and to native speakers of the target language for students for whom that access could be otherwise limited.

It is also supported by neuroscientist Fiske and Taylor; Nisbet and Ross as stated in Carol (2000) that visual images have the most powerful influence on learners' behavior, even though the visual input is not necessarily the focus of the activity. Authentic videos like movies, films, news broadcast can provide a realistic view of specific culture e.g. American culture, European culture, Chinese culture and

many more; their compelling story lines can motivate learners to stretch their comprehension. Additionally, using authentic video in the classroom can provide opportunities for learners to evaluate a medium that they use in their daily life (Stempleski, 1992). Instructional videos have the advantages in other ways. Since it is designed for teaching and learning activities, instructional videos had been evaluated for its language, purpose, content and length (Stempleski, 1992). The using of instructional videos in cultural understanding class would not be a problem since it is well selected and designed for the use of teaching and learning activities. From all of those evidence, there is no doubt video will become the best media in teaching. The using of video in cultural-understanding class also would not face any problems since the materials for video itself can be found easily on the Internet. The Implementation Milli Fazey of Kentucky Educational Television (KET) (1999) suggests that teachers think of using a video as a three-part lesson, including pre-viewing, viewing, and post-viewing activities. At a glance, the suggestion from Mili Fazey is the same as three phase technique that teacher used to use. First is pre-activities, second is the main activities and the last is the post activities. Since they are the same technique in teaching, there is no difference between three-part lesson from Mili Fazey and Three-Phase Technique. At the first phase, the teacher tried to engage learners interest and

learners motivation. It can be done from doing some games or some activities that make learners feel eager or curious about the lesson. The second phase is main activities, here the main activities are implemented. If the video is embedded as the main activities so it should be played or implemented in this phase. The last is post-activities; after watching the video, students are asked to answer the questions that related to the video. It is not always in the form of questions but it can be vary depends on the creativity of the teacher. The form can be in retelling the video or anything else as long as it related to the video. The Criteria Whether using authentic or instructional videos, there are some criteria to be followed in their selection. Arcario (1992), Johnston (1999), and Stempleski (1992) suggest that teachers ask themselves to fulfil the criteria before choosing a video or video series:

Inspiration/Motivation/Interest Content Clarity of message Pacing Graphics Length of sequence Independence of sequence Availability and quality of related materials Use of videos

After fulfilling the indicator or criteria, the teacher can use the video in their teaching and learning activities. The criteria are obviously needed in choosing the best video because there can be a misconception among one student to the other. For example, if the video is not appropriate for them or there are some violent contents, it is afraid that students can imitate the action in their daily life. Therefore the teacher is responsible for choosing the best video for their students. Conclusion Using a video in teaching and learning activities is the important innovation that had been found in the recent century. Video helps many teachers in their teaching activities as well as it helps students understand the lesson through it. Therefore, it is no doubt video is one of the best teaching media that mostly used in the teaching world. It can be said like that if the video itself fulfilled the criteria or the indicators that Arcario, Johnston, and Stempleski has suggested. Eventually, embedding the video in Cultural-Understanding class will help the students to understand more about the culture. The advantages of embedding the videos in Cultural-Understanding are: it is low-cost than going directly to the country, the sources are easily found in our life and the students are familiar with it.

References Arcario, P. (1992). Criteria for selecting video materials. In S. Stempleski & P. Arcario (Eds.), Video in second language teaching: Using, selecting, and producing video for the classroom (pp. 109-122). Alexandria,

VA: Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, Inc. Burt, M. (1999). Using Video with Adult English Language Learners [Electronic Version]. CAELA (Center for Adult English Acquisition). Canning, C. & Wilson. Practical Aspects of Using Video in the Foreign Language Classroom [Electronic version]. The Center of Excellence for Research and Training, Higher Colleges of Technology (Abu Dhabi). Fazey, M. (1999). Guidelines to help instructors help their learners get the most out of video lessons. Unpublished manuscript. (Available from Kentucky Educational Television, Lexingon, KY) Herron, C. (2000). Using Instructional Video to Teach Culture to Beginning Foreign Language Students [Electronic version]. CALICO (Computer Assisted Language Instruction Consortium) Journal. 17, 3. Martinez-Gibson. E. A. (l998). A study on cultural awareness through commercials and writing. Foreign Language Annals, 31, 115-139. Nisbett, R. W., & Ross, L. D. (1980). Human inference: Strategies and shortcomings of social judgement. Englewood Cliffs, NY: Prentice-Hall.

Shrum, J. L., & Glisan, E. W. (1994). Teacher's handbook. Boston: Heinle & Heinle. Stempleski, S. (1992). Teaching communication skills with authentic video. In S. Stempleski & P. Arcario (Eds.), Video in second language teaching: Using, selecting, and producing video for the classroom (pp. 7-24). Alexandria, VA: Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, Inc. Vogely, A. J. (1998). Listening comprehension anxiety: Students reported sources and solutions. Foreign Language Annals, 31, 67-80.