Cultural teaching - some ideas, please

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Vital Spark
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Cultural teaching - some ideas, please

Post by Vital Spark » Wed Sep 14, 2016 7:35 pm

I teach a course called 'The Culture of Native English Speakers'. It's an elective course and is extremely popular with the students. I try and teach them the differences between western culture and Thai culture, but I also flip it round to get them to look at how their culture is perceived by westerners (I have to tread carefully there...). Anyway, as I've lived here for nearly 18 years, I forget (have got used to) things that surprised/shocked me in those early days.

OK, here's where you can help. Can you think of anything that's considered the norm in Thailand that would be seen as a bit strange if you did it in a western country, e.g. wearing a doctor's mask out and about when you''re not feeling well.

Thanks (in advance) for your help,
VS
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Big Boy
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Re: Some ideas, please

Post by Big Boy » Wed Sep 14, 2016 7:46 pm

Leaving shoes in a public place before entering a building.
No knives when eating food in food courts such as Tesco and Big C
Wearing pyjamas to the market
Eating on the floor at home, when there's a perfectly good table and chairs available
Wearing normal day clothes when swimming

Just a few to get you started. Will add more if I think of any.
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Re: Some ideas, please

Post by Big Boy » Wed Sep 14, 2016 7:59 pm

Crazy (very long/late) shop opening times/working hours.
Using motorcycles as taxis
Military bases for public recreation
Health and Safety
Lack of usable pavements
Lack of formal dress at occassions such as weddings
Sharing of food, even with strangers seems to be a Thai trait, especially in rural Thailand.
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Re: Some ideas, please

Post by Bristolian » Wed Sep 14, 2016 8:15 pm

Drinking out of plastic bags
Sweet and spicy foods but very little savory
Bread being mostly sweet and considered a desert
Eating from plastic plates normally reserved for picnics in the west
Ice with beer
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Re: Some ideas, please

Post by Bristolian » Wed Sep 14, 2016 8:25 pm

Skin whitening creams
Covering up at the beach
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Re: Some ideas, please

Post by Gregjam » Wed Sep 14, 2016 8:34 pm

Asking directly what your income is and other aspects of your life that would be impolite and unlikely to be asked by people you may have never met.
Noise tolerance.
Western preference not to be surrounded by family all the time.

I would hazard a guess that these are already included but they are certainly something I had to adjust to.

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Re: Some ideas, please

Post by Gregjam » Wed Sep 14, 2016 8:42 pm

And Thai Lakorns which although very predictable, show you what will happen before the programme starts, during and after the programme and just so you dont get a shock or wonder what will happen in the next episode, a preview after the current episode.

Plus the direct product placement in all of the tv quiz programmes. This one probably more relevant when compared to UK than USA programmes.

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Re: Some ideas, please

Post by Big Boy » Wed Sep 14, 2016 8:51 pm

Smoking in petrol stations
Buying motorcycle fuel in recycled whiskey bottles at the roadside
Stopping on Motorways
Wearing of school uniform at university
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Re: Some ideas, please

Post by RCer » Wed Sep 14, 2016 9:11 pm

Here's a couple more that you probably already covered.

Girls sitting sideways on the back of a motorbike without holding on and texting away without a care in the world.

Operating a manual transmission motorbike with sandles/flip-flops on.

Lack of sensitivity to sewage and rotting food smells in the house.

Always drinking bottled water, not tap water. Even when the source is a private well.

Being courtious even when not being treated in the same manner.

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Re: Some ideas, please

Post by Nereus » Wed Sep 14, 2016 9:21 pm

Stopping on Motorways
Recently passed a guy stopped on a motorway peeing up against the safety barrier! :shock:
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Re: Some ideas, please

Post by RCer » Wed Sep 14, 2016 9:32 pm

Nereus wrote:
Stopping on Motorways
Recently passed a guy stopped on a motorway peeing up against the safety barrier! :shock:
Common outside a city in the US.

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Re: Some ideas, please

Post by Vital Spark » Wed Sep 14, 2016 9:38 pm

Great stuff, guys. Keep 'em coming.

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Re: Some ideas, please

Post by caller » Wed Sep 14, 2016 9:39 pm

Leaving rubbish everywhere.
Eating KFC with a knife and fork even though there are signs everywhere saying 'finger licking good'!
The use of whistles as a traffic and parking aid, not to mention red flags.
Being followed around by sales folk in stores.
Petrol pump attendants.
Traffic offences / giving way.
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Post by Matlot » Wed Sep 14, 2016 9:52 pm

No mains gas supply. Having to use bottles.

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Re: Some ideas, please

Post by dundrillin » Wed Sep 14, 2016 10:07 pm

Cars,motor bikes and the occasional cement Lorry driving on the wrong side of the road.
While stationary at a zebra crossing a police car bonds through.
People smiling - very rare in Aberdeen.
Motor bikes with no lights at night.
The temperature at nighttime.
The lack of stars in the night sky.

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