Language Café n°5: Prejudices

Our fifth language cafe had several activities around prejudices to make participants reflect on the ones they might have. This was also a great opportunity to work on tolerance.

We started with an activity where participants were divided into two groups. Each had a letter written by a different person about the same inter-planet exchange. Participants then reflected on how an event can be understood differently depending on a person’s personal and cultural background, and shared some personal experiences. It was sometimes funny to see how an act can mean different things depending on where you live!

Then, we completed the cultural iceberg: participants had to decide what elements were part of the visible elements of a culture and what were invisible elements. This activity has the purpose to show that, just like for an iceberg, a culture has more things hidden than visible. Those elements that are hidden often explain much more about a country than what one can see.

Finally, we played a game of pictionnary. Things to draw started easy, with things such as “flower”, or “carpet”. We gradually became more difficult and abstract, and participants ended up having to draw and make the others guess words like “volunteering” or “universal”. This was a lot of fun, first because of everyone’s drawing skills, secondly because we sometimes had different understandings of a same drawing. This activity showed that there are concepts that are very abstract and that they can be understood differently.

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