In class this week we taught the second lesson of the semester, Linguistics. The lesson began with a review of the Culture lesson by asking the children what culture was. Culture is our actions and behaviors and what’s important to us in our day to day lives. After the review, the lesson went to an introduction of linguistic anthropology. This introduction included teaching the students the difference between linguistics and linguistic anthropology. Linguistics studies more semantics (the vocabulary meaning of a word and its place in a sentence) while linguistic anthropology studies the pragmatics (the context of words in sentences). Then we went into a basic definition of communication and the purpose of communication. Communication is a way of expressing your thoughts to others in an effective way and its purpose is interaction, cooperation, connection, and expression of needs and desires. The purpose of communication was reinforced by different examples, one being the expression of needs and desires. We went over the cries of babies. Babies have different cries for different needs. One cry can mean baby is hungry, while a different cry can mean that baby needs a diaper change. We then went into dialects and taught the students about different dialects in the US and in Spain, our sister country. Once the lesson was finished, we started our activity which was communication charades. This activity consisted of giving new meanings to the everyday words, “frogs,” “squirrels,” and “turtles.” Each group then had to act out the meanings to the new words and have the other groups guess what the meaning was based on the skit that the other groups acted out.
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