Project Code: STATE-RUS-28

Share U.S. Culture with Russian English Learners through the Access Program

Project Title Share U.S. Culture with Russian English Learners through the Access Program
Project Summary Create U.S. culture lessons in English weekly or biweekly for English learners participating in U.S. Embassy Moscow-sponsored programs. Interact virtually with the students to conduct these lessons, focusing on conversation and the sharing of culture.
Country Russia
Agency Department of State
DoS Office N/A
Post MOSCOW
Section PAS
Number of Interns 20
Project Description

The Virtual Intern develops U.S. culture lesson plans and delivers them by video conference to Russian students in U.S. Embassy Moscow-supported programs. The Intern is expected to interact for 60-90 minutes with approximately 14-20 students. The goal is for the students to have a chance to speak English with a U.S. citizen.

Interns will work with the teacher to determine appropriate topics for discussion, based on the material the students are working with at the time of the virtual meetings. Topics could include popular culture or education. A usual lesson would see the intern present on a topic of U.S. culture (language, national parks, geographical aspects of culture, food, music, holidays, high school life, etc) for about 10-15 minutes, including photographs. Then the intern would ask questions about the presentation and afterwards ask questions for the students to answer about their own culture. The intern is asked to create these lessons.

The difference in time zones may require early morning or late night sessions and the video conferencing program may be provided by the teacher, though the intern can suggest a platform also.

Required Skills or Interests
Skill(s)
Cultural diplomacy
Educational design
Additional Information

The English learners for this internship include students from the following two U.S. Embassy Moscow programs: The English Access Microscholarship program (https://exchanges.state.gov/non-us/program/english-access-microscholarship-program) provides young disadvantaged but motivated students aged 13-16 with English language, U.S. culture, and leadership skills throughout the 2-year program; the Advance through Vocational English program is for underemployed 21-35 year olds and provides English, entrepreneurship, and management skills over 9 months.

The Virtual Intern will create lessons so that the Access/Advance students can converse in English and learn about U.S. culture while sharing information about Russian culture to the Virtual Intern. The purpose of the lessons is to increase English fluency and knowledge about the United States. Topics can be chosen by the Virtual Intern or by the collaboration among the Virtual Intern, the Access/Advance teachers, and the students. Possible topics include traditions, food, hobbies, U.S. sports, holidays, famous people, and other interesting topics.

The Virtual Intern can play games, give information, and have a discussion based on that information, role play, have a Q&A session, or teach the students something. It is recommended to plan different activities each lesson.

The Virtual Intern can use materials from many sources to create these lessons, including
https://americanenglish.state.gov/resources/celebrate-holidays-usa
https://americanenglish.state.gov/culture-music-and-game-resources
https://americanenglish.state.gov/four-skills-resources
https://www.si.edu/educators
https://learningenglish.voanews.com/

Additionally, the Virtual Intern can always reach out to Regional English Language Officer Kelli Odhuu for additional lesson ideas or to help solve issues with the sessions.