Abstract 529

Love and Food In Second Language Teaching

Presentation: Botao Wu

Session E | 11:05 – 11:45 | Location: Room 1005


Teaching English as second language is especially interesting when we involve our background knowledge in the process. Food and love are popular themes in many cultures. Both Confucius and Mencius talked about the importance of food and love. Confucius says 饮食男女,人之大欲存焉 (Dining and relationship between male and female, the great desire that human beings have); according to Mencius, 食色,性也 (The desire for food and love is the intrinsic nature of human beings).

In a UBC summer institute, I asked students to experience the materials about love and food, and to write and discuss. I used materials such as English stories, poems, Ted talks and songs about food and love and was warmly welcomed by my students. I selected poems such as Down by the Salley Garden, together with the songs of the poem, Love’s Philosophy, I Carry Your Heart with Me, etc. I also offered them Chinese poems about love and food, asking them to translate them into English. We had a happy course and my students’ writing and speaking abilities were greatly improved in the two-week summer course; I can demonstrate my students writings from the first class to the last one.

I would propose a roundtable discussion about teaching a second language via students’ familiar topic, like food and love.

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