In many countries, most friends date from schooldays, and it is hard to make new ones thereafter. For Americans it is the exception rather than the rule to remain in one place, and the school friends are usually left behind. New friends rise up to fill new stages of life. Even when the locale remains the same, new friends step in to match life changes: college friends, work friends, club friends, neighbors, new-hobby friends, sports friends, friends-with-same-age-children.
Frequently, each friend fills a particular niche. There’s the friend with whom I discuss certain problems, the one with whom I play tennis, the one with whom I work. When anything changes – my problems go away, I quit tennis, I get a new job – I may stop seeing those particular friends. If I am lucky, I will have a few lifelong friends, but these could be scattered about the world.
I will be very hesitant to ask friends for favors – one of my attractions as a friend is that I am not demanding. If I were, my prospective friends would be likely to back off. Neediness scares people. Rather than having to refuse a request, we prefer to have friends we can trust to make their requests rare and reasonable.
We do not wish to be indebted to anybody else. We like reciprocal arrangements because they keep the scales balanced. This week I drive my friend to the airport; next week she drives me.
Eventually in a friendship one can begin to take small services for granted – the loan of a dress, a phone call to find out vital information – but no one expects a real sacrifice. No matter how desperately my friend might need a babysitter, she would never ask me to miss a day’s work to take care of her child. I have sometimes been very confused when foreign friends did remarkable things for me – drove me great distances or took the subway to the airport to meet me. Such things are not in our vocabulary, and I find it difficult to respond.
For the average American, the feeling of being indebted is practically a physical pain. When a neighbor had to store some things in my freezer (which was no trouble for me), she could not rest until she had made me a special dinner. I rescued another neighbor’s runaway dog, and she bought me a cake. In point of fact, most of us are human and like to be helpful and would not mind receiving only thanks for a good deed.
Americans prefer not to borrow things from neighbors. We would rather buy our own, even if it means spending a lot for something we use once a year.
Attitudes are different in small towns where people know each other well. In rural areas most people do not have the money to buy tools they will use once a year, and a great deal of socializing goes on in the name of borrowing and returning things. In the cities, affluence has afforded independence, but it is significant that Americans would rather put their money into independence than into other luxuries.
In the special category of lifelong friends, the favor scorecard is not so carefully kept. But here the potential for favor-giving must be more or less equal. This is one reason it is difficult to have good friends across economic gaps. If you fly me to your villa in Spain, how can I possibly repay you?
If we are having a party, I am not going to arrive in the morning to help out. Otherwise, I would be infringing on the party-givers’ privacy. They are not obligated to have anyone outside the family in their house until the first guest arrives, and they don’t want me looking inside their cupboards and listening to them bicker about how many bottles of wine to buy.
Furthermore, if I insist on helping, I would seem to be suggesting that they are unable to manage alone. Even when I have a very close friend in need, I will go to lengths to appear not to be inconveniencing myself by helping. Part of my kindness to my friend is to act as if I think she can manage perfectly well without me.
Perhaps she is sick. I will make a casserole dish for her and take it to her house, which is some distance away. I may tell her that the dish was something left over after feeding my family and that I happened to be in her area anyhow. She may suspect the truth but will appreciate my consideration of her feelings.
I really do not want to say you will find no helpful friends in America. Many people in America do not live by the “rules” outlined here, and the country is full of good souls who exist to be of use to others.
(Culture Shock! USA. A Guide to Customs and Etiquette. Esther Wanning)
3 Do you see any differences in your understanding of friendship and American view?
Just for Fun!
All kinds of social knowledge and graces are useful, but one of the best is to be able to yawn with your mouth closed.
* * *
Two men were seated together in a crowded street car. One of them noticed that the other had his eyes closed.
“What’s the matter, Bill,” he asked, “feeling ill?”
“I’m all right,” answered Bill, “but I hate to see ladies standing.”
* * *
Employer: “Personal appearance is a helpful factor in business success.”
Employee: “Yes, and business success is a helpful factor in personal appearance.”
Making Your Own Presentations
Language Learning Experience and Objectives for the Future
Listen, read and talk about...
· the first steps of getting ready for a presentation
· your language learning experience
· your personal goals of studying English
Learn how to...
· plan a presentation
· adapt to cultural differences
· speak about the importance of learning English
· define your personal goals in learning English
· making a presentation
· discussing personal goals and strategies to achieve them
· vocabulary and speech patterns
· the use of tenses
· an essay
· a Registration Form
· a biographical summary
· a summary of your presentation at a seminar
Making your own presentations
Getting ready for presentations
1You have recollected the ways to introduce yourself to other individuals in different situations. However to introduce yourself is just a start of communication. The main thing here is to present yourself, and of course your opinion, in the most favourable way so that your audience could accept you.
· Have you ever made a report in front of a big audience?
· Do you know how to address the audience?
· Do students need presentation skills?
Developing communication skills:
Getting ready for presentations
2 What is necessary to make an effective presentation? Mark (ü) the suggestions you agree with.
To make an effective presentation, you should:
1. find out as much as possible about your audience
3 Presenters can use different techniques to get their audience’s attention at the start of a presentation. Match the techniques below to the examples.
a) tell a personal story c) ask a question
b) offer an amazing fact d) state a problem
1. I wonder if any of you know the answer to this question: What is the most promising career today?
2. A few years ago when I was at high school I met a famous journalist (I don’t want to mention his name now) and I was so impressed with his extensive knowledge and fascinating stories that I decided ...
3. Let me give you a statistic: about 1200 students study at the Faculty of Philosophy and Social Studies, majoring in four fields.
4. Many students are dreaming about a degree in web journalism. What is unique about web journalists?
5. The success in learning English greatly depends on your efforts and motivation. What recommendations can be given?
Developing communication skills:
Addressing the audience in a formal (semiformal) situations
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It gives me great honour to preside over this evening’s event ...
I’m Cathy Smith. Today, I’m here representing the ... organization ... I’m going to outline the program we’ve developed for you for these days. First, ...
I am most pleased to be here today to participate in this important seminar and to discuss ...
Good morning everyone,
On behalf of myself and organizing committee, I’d like to welcome you ...
It is a great pleasure for me to extend to you the warm welcome of our Organization. First of all, let me introduce myself. My name is ...
Esteemed Mr. Chairman, Esteemed delegates...
It would be very difficult, indeed, for me to express adequately my appreciation of the honour which has been conferred upon me by inviting me to address this great gathering …
This is Ronald Reagan, President of the United States. I am pleased to speak to you on the occasion of the New Year. (televised New Year’s Day address)
4 Address the audience, adding an opening sentence or two
1. An audience of students stating the purpose of your address
2. An audience of professors and students who have gathered for participating at Annual Students’ Conference
3. Members of official foreign delegation visiting BSU.
4. A group of high school students visiting the faculty on Open Day.
5. A group of high-ranking officials at the meeting of American-Belarusian Friendship Society.
^ 5 Prepare four different openings using the techniques above. Practice the openings with a partner. Choose one of the presentation situations below.
· You are talking to high school students. You want to persuade them that knowledge of English can be beneficial to any career.
Audience: high school students.
· You are going to make a report at the International Seminar ‘The techniques of planning a presentation’.
Audience: participants of the conference, teachers and students of universities.
^ 6 Discuss these points:
1. What is the problem with reading a presentation word for word? What alternatives are there?
2. How can you ‘break the ice’ at the beginning of a presentation?
3. Is it a good idea to tell the audience at the beginning what you will talk about and for how long?
4. Is it a good idea to summarize the main points again at the end?
5. Some people prefer to answer questions during the presentation, others at the end. What are the advantages and disadvantages of both methods?
6. What kind of audio-visual aids do you use in your presentations?
7. Can you give any other advice on how to give a successful presentation?
7 Study the Useful language for Presentation given below and decide whether each sentence in the box is formal (F) or informal (I).
Useful Language for Presentations
Addressing the audience and introducing yourself
· On behalf of myself and Focus Advertising, I’d like to welcome you. My name is Sven Larsen. r
· Hi, I’m Dominigue Lagrange. Good to see you all. r
· Good morning, everyone. Thanks for coming to my presentation. My name’s Marta Rodrigues. I’m Personnel Director of Tara Fashions. r
Introducing the topic
· I’m going to talk to you about our faculty (department, company). First, I’ll give you some basic information about... Then, ... r
· This morning, I’d like to outline the program (campaign concept) we’ve developed for you. r
· I’m going to tell you about the ideas we’ve come up with for the ad campaign. r
Outlining the presentation
· First, I’ll give you some basic information. Secondly, I’ll talk... r
· I’ll give you the background and talk you through the results of the market study. r
· I’ve divided my presentation into three parts. r
· If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to interrupt me. r
· Well, thanks very much for listening to my talk. Are there any questions? r
· If you’re not clear about anything, go ahead and ask any questions you want... r
²T 2.1. Listen to the openings of one formal presentation and one informal presentation. Tick (ü) the phrases from the Useful Language for Presentations used by the speakers.
analYsing a presentation
1 Skim the text which is the welcome speech of the head of the Department of the English Language. The text outlines the main goals of the course. After skimming the text refer to the analysis of stages of a presentation and answer the following questions:
1. What technique does the author use to get their audience’s attention?
2. How many main points is the author going to speak about?
3. What words are used for outlining the presentation?
4. How does the author connect some points to the needs/interests of the audience?
Welcome to University
It gives me great pleasure to welcome you on behalf of the Department of the English Language.
I guess you have already had a chance to get to know some of our teachers and have already acquainted with the main principles, requirements and aims of the course of English. We touched upon these questions at our previous lesson.
Today I would like to give some details about the course of English. First, we will discuss the goals of the course and teaching strategies to achieve them. Then I will draw your attention to some points of organizing English classes and finally to the necessity of students’ active role in learning English.
No doubt, that today the knowledge of English is a must. The teachers of the department will be doing their best to help you to develop your communication skills and to encourage lifelong language learning. As the saying goes ‘knowledge is no burden’. ‘Live and learn’ should be a motto of modern professionals.
The teachers of our department firmly believe that the course will help you to improve your ability to communicate in English in a wide range of everyday and professional situations. Everybody studying this course will enlarge their vocabulary, develop grammar skills, improve their reading abilities and become more fluent and confident in using the English language. Good knowledge of English will, without doubt, increase the career prospects in any professional field. Even in those areas where knowledge of a foreign language may not be a primary requirement, linguistic proficiency often gives graduates a vital edge over other applicants.
The Department lays special emphasis throughout the course on the acquisition of a high level of language skills, both written and spoken. Written skills are developed by means of writing essays, reports, doing projects, translations, and other assignments. The instruction method is communicative, geared for adults and tailored to the needs of students. Participation in different forms of interaction: conversations, discussions, debates, presentations – helps to develop oral speech skills. The material which features in the language classes is chosen for its topicality (àêòóàëüíîñòü) and authenticity (ïîäëèííîñòü, îðèãèíàëüíîñòü) and deals as far as possible with up-to-date themes from everyday life, professional subjects, politics, economics, and culture, including computer-assisted language learning and the use of videos.
Classes are held in small groups comprising learners of similar level of competence, which permits intensive and highly personal attention to the individual students.
However, you should realize that the success in achieving learner’s aims is not only a matter of teaching techniques. Today, the active role of the learner is an established principle. It is obvious that the teaching outcome greatly depends on your efforts and motivation. Certainly, a few gifted language learners do exist, but most people arrive at their fluency only as a result of hard work, expended over a considerable period of time.
Let’s try to start working hard from the very beginning. Your achievements mainly (entirely) depend on you. When you work to your full capacity, you can hope to attain the knowledge and skills that will enable you to create your future and control your destiny. Take hold of your life, apply your gifts and talents, work with dedication and self-discipline. Have high expectations for yourself and convert every challenge into an opportunity.
Thank you for your attention. Feel free to ask questions if you have any.
2 Now read the text carefully and answer the questions on the presentation content.
1. What does the Department lay special emphasis on?
2. What are the main principles the material of the course chosen for?
3. What is the instruction method?
4. What objectives will the course help you to reach?
5. What does success in achieving your aims depend on?
6. Do you think it is important for a specialist to know a foreign language?
!3 Analyse the presentation language. Find in the text above English equivalents for the following word combinations.
^ 2 In pairs or small groups decide on your speaking skills objectives for the course that you are beginning and the ways to achieve them. Choose one of the following statements, or write one of your own.
a) I can express my ideas quite well but I make a lot of mistakes. By the end of the course I want to make fewer mistakes. I hope to learn more words, to enlarge my professional vocabulary and to improve my grammar. I think the best way to do it is to actively participate in classroom talks and discussions, to read a lot, and, certainly, not to skip classes.
b) I find it difficult to express my ideas naturally enough because I can’t always find the right word, although I do know quite a lot. Of course, I want to learn more vocabulary, but I also want to get better at communicating my ideas with the language that I already know. I will try to do my best to develop my communicative skills. I think that if I make notes during the lessons and do my home assignments carefully, I will manage to improve speaking abilities.
c) To be honest, I do not feel very optimistic about the prospects of improving my language skills. However, I’d like to speak well enough to pass my exam in English successfully. That’s why I’m going to attend classes regularly and to be active in class.
!d) I _______________________________________________________
^ 3 In pairs or small groups decide on the best learning strategies for you. There are a lot of activities which help you learn efficiently and enjoy the process of learning. Have you ever tried these methods:
1. watching films and videos in English;
2. listening to songs, audiobooks and podcasts;
3. reading magazines, news and blogs in English;
4. exchanging postcards and having penpals?
!Write down the most effective and enjoyable learning activities for you
& a) To help you to set goals for learning English make use of the expressions given in the list below.
· to enlarge my vocabulary
· to develop grammar skills
· to improve my reading abilities
· to become more fluent at speaking
· to speak well enough to pass an exam
· to speak well enough to be understood without difficulty
· to get better at communicating my ideas
· to become more confident in using English to be able to start a conversation
· to maintain and close face-to- face conversations on topics that are familiar
· to follow the main points of extended discussion around me
· to acquire intercultural competences
! 1 b) Try to make a full list of goals for learning English and think of learning activities to reach them.
My learning goals
By the end of this academic year (semester) I would like to …
To reach these goals I am going to …
^ 5 Present a short report on your personal goals for learning English to the class.
writing an essay
! 1 1 Write a short essay on one of the given topics. See in Appendix 2 tips for writing an essay. Try to answer the given questions in your essays.
1. My Language learning biography.
1. What languages have you learned?
2. What languages did you learn at school or in courses? (give the duration, goals, content, teaching methods, textbooks, etc.)
3. Did you learn well and with pleasure?
4. What was particularly important and enriching?
5. How long have you learned English?
6. What motivated or demotivated you?
2. My significant intercultural experience.
1. Have you been abroad?
2. What countries have you been to?
3. Have these experiences influenced your interest in English?
4. Did you meet English speaking people? What topics did you communicate on?
5. Are people from different cultures really different?
3. My expectations from the University course of English.
1. What language learning experience do you have?
2. What was particularly important and enriching?
3. What are your personal goals of learning English?
4. What communication skills do you need for your future profession?
5. Do you realize that success in achieving your aims depends on your active role, your efforts, and motivation?
11 Join up with students who have similar learning goals. You can probably find the name for your group: ‘smart girls/guys’, ‘lifelong learners’, ‘lazybones’- which do you think characterize you better? Discuss the objectives you have decided on and prepare “The Group Charter”. Be ready to present it atthe next lesson on behalf of your group or present it together. Make use of the presentation skills tips given above. For ideas see Appendix 3.
2 Study the examples of Internet sites which can help in your independent learning of English. Choose one of them or add some of your own choice.
Internet resources for independent learning of English
The Internet contains lots of opportunities for independent learners of English
… exchanging postcards or having penpals, try
… listening to podcasts and audiobooks, try
Get ready for a short 1-2 minute presentation on the method you have chosen. In your presentation:
1. demonstrate the method;
2. list its opportunities and benefits;
3. give tips to your groupmates how to use it (e.g. share other useful
internet-links or electronic copies of materials).
Be ready to assess the presentations of your groupmates.
Additional Reading to Unit 2
Communication of Cultures and
Culture of Communication
LEARNING ABOUT PRESENTATION
1 Did you have any experience of making presentations of your projects?
2 Read the text and find out about cultural peculiarities of presentations.
Text 1. Cultural hints for performing presentations
Style of presentations
§ In the USA the presenter has a more informal style. Modern audiovisual aids are used. The audience may ask questions or interrupt while someone is speaking.
§ In Britain the presenter often has a more formal style. Germans like a presentation with technical details. The French like a formal, logical approach mixed with imagination.
§ In Latin America and southern Europe presentations are lively and eloquent. The opening includes appreciation of hospitality. Comments are directed to the senior persons. Much use is made of hands and body language to emphasize a point. Audience members may want a more personal ‘extra’ talk afterwards.
§ In Japan and south-east Asia the audience likes facts and data rather than abstract concepts. The opening is formal and includes appreciation of hospitality. Comments are directed to everyone. The Japanese ask repeated questions to check understanding.
Using your voice
§ Americans and Germans use a strong, unemotional voice. Most northern Europeans use a moderate tone of voice.
§ Latin Americans and southern Europeans have a forceful, animated style which is believed to project sincerity.
§ Asians have a quiet, restrained style. The Japanese use silence to establish harmony and sense the mood of the audience.
& 3 Read the text and make use of the given recommendations introducing the speakers.
Text 2. Speeches of Introduction
“Distinguished guests, the President of the United States...” If you are ever in a situation in which you have to introduce the President, you will need no more than the eight words that begin this paragraph. The President is so well known that any further remarks would be inappropriate and almost foolish.
Most of the time, however, a speech of introduction will be neither this brief nor this ritualized. If you are introducing another speaker, you will need to accomplish three purposes in your introduction:
Build enthusiasm for the upcoming speaker.
Build enthusiasm for the speaker’s topic.
Establish a welcoming climate that will boost the speaker’s credibility.
A good speech of introduction can be a delight to hear and can do much to ease the task of the main speaker. The basic message of such a speech should be “Here is a speaker you will enjoy, and this is why.” Usually you will say something about the speaker and about the topic – in that order. Following are some guidelines for speeches of introduction.
Be brief. The purpose of a speech of introduction is to focus attention on the main speaker, not on the person making the introduction. Under normal circumstances, a speech of introduction will be no more than two or three minutes long, and it may be shorter if the speaker is already known to the audience.
Make sure your remarks are completely accurate. Many introducers have embarrassed themselves as well as the main speakers by garbling basic facts about the speaker. Always check with the speaker ahead of time to make sure your introduction is accurate in every aspect. Above all, get the speaker’s name right—especially if it involves a foreign pronunciation.
Adapt your remarks to the occasion. Formal occasions require formal speeches of introduction. If you are presenting a guest speaker at an informal business meeting, you might be much more casual than if you were presenting the same speaker to the same audience at a formal occasion.
Adapt your remarks to the main speaker. No matter how well it is received by the audience, a speech of introduction that leaves the main speaker feeling uncomfortable has failed in part of its purpose.
Adapt your remarks to the audience. You need to adapt a speech of introduction to the audience you are facing. Your aim is to make this audience want to hear this speaker on this subject. Suppose, for example, the police commissioner of a certain city is going to address two groups – an audience of elementary-school children and the members of the city council.
The introduction to the schoolchildren might go something like this:
Children, we have a very important guest with us today. He is the number one policeman in our city, the head of all the other police officers. Besides knowing a lot about crime right here at home, the police commissioner has also spent time working with Interpol – a special group of police officers who deal with crimes around the world. Today he is going to talk about how all of us can work with our neighborhood police officers to prevent crime. Let’s give a big round of applause and listen carefully to Police Commissioner Robert Washington.
But the introduction to the city council would be along these lines:
Members of the city council and distinguished guests, it is my privilege to introduce to you today the police commissioner, who will address us on the subject of the community policing program. Most of you know that the commissioner has a distinguished record as head of our police force for more than 10 years. However, you may not know that he also holds a master’s degree on criminology and studied abroad for a year with Interpol, the international police force.
The commissioner first introduced the community program six years ago. The idea behind the program is....
Today the commissioner is going to tell us how this program can be extended to more of the city and made more effective for all of our citizens. Please welcome Police Commissioner Robert Washington.
Try to create a sense of anticipation and drama. You may have noticed one detail shared by the two speeches: the speaker’s name was saved for last. This is a convention in speeches of introduction. By doing this you build a sense of drama, and the speaker’s name comes as the climax of your introduction.
(Stephen E. Lucas. The Art of Public Speaking. 2001)
LEARNING ABOUT THE ROLE OF ENGLISH IN THE WORLD
1 Do you know why English has become the world language? Mark the following statements as true or false.
1. English was already an important world language four hundred years ago.
2. In Shakespeare’s time only a few million people spoke English.
3. It is only because of the United States that English has become a world language.
4. English is the second only to Chinese in the number of people who speak it.
5. One person in seven of the world’s entire population speaks English.
6. Knowledge of English is a decisive prerequisite for the successful entry into many professions.
7. Most people arrive at the fluency of English only as a result of hard work.
& 2 Read the fragment of the lecture on the role of English today. Find out whether your answers were true.
Text 3. Why English has become a world language
Let’s try to answer the question how English has become a world language and why learning foreign languages is so important.
Nowadays, when English is one of the major languages of the world, it requires an effort of imagination to realize that this is a relatively recent thing – that in Shakespeare’s time, for example, only a few million people spoke English, and the language was not thought to be very important by the other nations of Europe, and was unknown to the rest of the world. English has become a world language because of its establishment as a mother tongue outside England, in all the continents of the world. This exporting of English began in the seventeenth century, with the first settlements in North America. Above all, it is the great growth of population in the United States, assisted by massive immigration in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries that has given the English language its present standing in the world. Today English has become the world’s most important language in politics, science, trade and cultural relations. In a number of speakers (400 million) it is second only to Chinese.
The English language is studied and used as a foreign language all over the world. People who speak English fall into one of three groups: those who have learned it as a native language; those who have learned it as a second language in a society that is mainly bilingual; and those who are forced to use it for a practical purpose – administrative, professional or educational. One person in seven of the world’s entire population belongs to one of these three groups. Incredibly enough, 75% of the world’s mail and 60% of the world’s telephone calls are in English. It is the language of business, computer technology, public communication, science and diplomacy.
All these facts and figures prove the importance of knowing English for future research and professional career. Besides, learning languages doesn’t only broadens the mind, it enriches all of us culturally. We learn to appreciate ways of life which may be different from our own. In other words learning languages equips students with the communicative and intercultural competences which are today the essential and often decisive prerequisites for the successful entry into many professions.