Teachers’ Perceptions of Cultural Contents in English Language Textbooks Used in Multicultural Classrooms at a Thai Primary School
Keywords:Thai English Textbooks, English Language Teaching, Intercultural Awareness, Intercultural Communicative Competence, Multiculturalism
Textbooks have always played a significant role in the field of English language teaching (ELT). They are the main source that conveys cultural values and information in the language classroom. However, compared to the increasing number of migrants in Thailand, and particularly migrant children in Thai public schools, ELT textbooks have yet to properly take into consideration the reality of the multicultural Thai context. English is currently the most widely used lingua franca in the world, which means that it is shaped by a large number of non-native speakers in various multilingual and multicultural settings and local contexts. Thus, it is no longer sensible for ELT to be solely associated with Anglophone cultures. This study is based on observations in classrooms and semi-structured interviews with three Thai teachers of English at a government primary school in Samut Sakhon province in Thailand. Findings demonstrate that there is a strong need for more cultural content related to ASEAN countries in English textbooks, especially in multicultural schools. Furthermore, this study addresses implications for future ELT practices and materials for Thai primary schools in light of the continuously growing diversity within Thai society.
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