The Women without Frontiers (WwF) International Conference

Rhodes Palace, Rhodes, Greece - September 26-28, 2008


Contribution by Buthaina Al-Othman

Title: Promoting Peace via Cross-Cultural Online Projects in the Language Classroom

Presenter: Buthaina Al-Othman

Language Center, Kuwait University, Kuwait

Co-Presenters: Vance Stevens (UAE), Nellie Deutsch (Canada), Doris Molero (Venezuela)

Virtual Venue: Webheads vOffice at http://home.learningtimes.net/learningtimes?go=273662

Saturday, September 27, 2008 at 9:50 am - 10:10 am Greece Local Time (GMT+3). See what time is this in your country at the fixed time around the world.

The following are URLs mentioned in this presentation:

MEpeace.com: http://www.mepeace.org/
iPeace: http://ipeace.ning.com/
Peace One Day: http://www.peaceoneday.org/
Webheads in action: http://tinyurl.com/26afzh
Kuwait university student-group online presentations: http://tinyurl.com/3s5vyd
Kuwaiti and Argentinean online project: http://tinyurl.com/3dbydu
USA, Kuwait, KSA AFL Skype project: http://tinyurl.com/4527eh
Writingmatrix project: http://writingmatrix.wikispaces.com/

Abstract & Description:

Cultural differences remain one of the main obstacles that are slowing down peace processes in our world. Language teachers who believe in promoting peace in their classrooms found that online cross-cultural projects on culture-related topics where students and teachers from different countries and cultures meet and interact using text or audio conversation or both have resulted in incredible positive impact aiding students to understand other cultures and to accept cultural differences. The presenter believes that this kind of online activities can promote peace in our classrooms through mutual cultural understanding that can reduce ambiguity and distance while connecting learners in the world through friendship and education.

The presenter will show and explain some examples of this kind of online cross-cultural projects successfully completed earlier by her students and other international classes taught by EFL/ESL teachers who are, like the presenter, members of the global Community of Practice (CoP) online, Webheads in Action (WiA). The presenter will invite some of her EFL/ESL Webhead colleagues to talk to the conference audience live and online about their experiences on the issue of promoting peace in the language classroom. There will be a Q & A period at the end of the presentation when the audiences are invited to direct any questions to the guest speakers and the presenter.