Classroom activity – understanding high power distance and low power distance


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Dear teaching friends,

These video clips provide good examples of a high power distance culture vs. a low power distance culture, through depicting interactions between a citizen and a national leader.

This clip, from the movie “The Queen,” shows the interaction between a newly-elected UK prime minister and the sovereign:

This clip shows President Obama interacting with the owner of a pizza shop:



Classroom activities – examples of “bad” public speaking


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Hello teaching friends:

These videos provide foundation for discussion of the things that can go wrong with impromptu, extemporaneous, and manuscript speaking.  While humorous, they are good examples of the importance of preparation.

Bad impromptu speaking:  The famous “Miss Teen South Carolina” clip.  Discuss why impromptu speaking is challenging, and requires practice and skill.  Consider how she could have better prepared herself for this moment:

Bad extemporaneous speaking:  While obviously a staged skit, this clip illustrates some perils of extemp speaking.  Rehearsal is paramount, and it’s a good idea to number your notecards!

Bad manuscript speaking:  Students often wish they could do this kind of speech, thinking that a written text would give them an extra crutch.  It’s important to point out that manuscript speaking is very challenging, and it takes a lot of experience do do it effectively.  Here, we have a young news reporter with a written script and a teleprompter, but he still struggles.

All three videos can be useful when talking about rehearsal and preparation, what went wrong, and what the speaker could have done differently to be better prepared.

Cheers –


Diet chronicles #4 – “Are you pregnant?” Plus, first gym trip, and making chili!


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In today’s episode, I talk about how (unthinking) people sometimes ask “fat” women if they’re pregnant!  Plus, my first trip to the gym, and making homemade chili.  Click on the picture below!

C and K pic