Note to teachers: This is a sensitive topic. Use only with appropriate classes.
With Answers! | Download the ESL Lesson plan here: Norway-Shooting-Multiculturalism-UppIntermediate-26072011.doc
Multiculturalism Action ESL News Lesson Plan: Warm-up
- If you had to move to another country, permanently, where would you go? Why?
- Where did your ancestors come from originally? Were they immigrants?
- Prior to June 22nd, 2011, what came to mind when you thought of Norway?
- How would you describe the major political parties in your country?
- Does your city have ethnic areas such as China-town, Little Italy, etc? If so, what do you think of these areas?
Norway Shooting Massacre and the Debate on Multiculturalism (July 26th, 2011)
The world is still recovering from the massacre and bombing in Norway on July 22nd that left 76 people dead. The shooter, Anders Breivik, claimed he was trying to save Europe from multiculturalism and Muslim immigration. He targeted a youth convention, attended by the children of left-wing politicians, in order to punish Norway’s governing Labor Party for its tolerant position on immigration.
Police have found a 1,500-page manifesto, written by Breivik, in which he expresses his extreme views and admiration for far right-wing authors. Many of these writers have since denounced Breivik as a psychopath and distanced themselves from his violent actions.
Saturday’s tragedy has put the spotlight back on the topic of multiculturalism. The works of Canadian right-wing columnist Mark Steyn are referenced in Breivik’s manifesto. Steyn expresses his opinion on immigration in this quotation from August 2002:
“I’m not a racist, only a culturist. I believe Western culture … is preferable to Arab culture: that’s why there are millions of Muslims in Scandinavia, and four Scandinavians in Syria. Follow the traffic. I support immigration, but with assimilation.”
In North America, there have traditionally been two models of social integration. One model, labeled the cultural mosaic (or salad bowl), is associated with the Canadian immigration system. Under this model, different cultures mix but remain distinct and keep their own identities. Another model, historically associated with the United States, is the melting pot, under which immigrant cultures “melt together” to become a homogenous whole. Recently, right-wing governments in several European countries, notably the Netherlands and Denmark, have reversed national policy and returned to monoculturalism. (263)
Multiculturalism ESL Lesson Plan: Comprehension Questions
Multiculturalism ESL Lesson Plan: Vocabulary Matching
- massacre – mass killings
- tolerant – open-minded, easy
- manifesto – written statement of political beliefs
- extreme – radical, fanatical
- denounce – condemn, criticize, reject
- the spotlight – the centre of attention, focus
- assimilation- the act of smaller groups adopting the dominant culture
- psychopath – crazy person
- integration – the combination of two things so they work together
- distinct – distinguishable, unique
- homogen(e)ous – uniform, unvaried, the same
Multiculturalism ESL Lesson Plan: Connect the below idea(s) to make a sentence.
government / uprising
|denounce / massacre|
political party / tolerant
|manifesto / extreme|
|put / spotlight / multiculturalism|
|assimilation / homogenous / society|
distinct / culture
integration / model
- Right-wing authors have denounced the massacre.
- The political party was known for its tolerant immigration policies.
- The manifesto contained many extreme ideas.
- The massacre has put the spotlight on the topic of multiculturalism.
- The aim of assimilation is to create a homogen(e)ous society.
- People in Quebec would like to protect their distinct culture.
- Janet supports the melting pot model of social integration.
- Bob’s ex-wife is a complete psychopath.
Multiculturalism ESL Lesson Plan: Debate
Your government has proposed a new restrictive visa system. Under the system, immigrants (and their spouses) will be required to:
- Pass a language test
- Pass a “cultural compatibility” exam that involves questions about education, gender equality, homosexuality, and terrorism.
- Pay a fee of 400 Euros
Student A: You do not support this idea. Think of reasons to back up your argument. When ready, start the debate by asking your partner what he/she thinks of the government’s new plan.
Student B: You support this idea. Think of reasons to support your argument. (Your partner will start the conversation.)
Multiculturalism ESL Lesson Plan: Role-Play
In the past twenty years, many immigrants and refugees have arrived in your country from war-torn countries. These people have not adapted well. Most live in their own communities and do not speak the official national language or follow the local customs. This has made it hard for them to get jobs; many live off money from the state. Work together with your partner and think of ideas that could help these people integrate into society. When finished, present your ideas to the class.
Multiculturalism ESL Lesson Plan: Discussion Questions
(Write your answers in the Comments section below if you wish).
News lesson plan copyright Matthew Barton of Englishcurrent.com