30 questions to fall in love with a culture
This activity can be organized as a part of a succession of zoom calls including artistic workshops for example. The participants can initially be presented with the 30 questions and be asked to prepare themselves on those. Then, during a zoom call, the participants can be divided into break-out rooms in couples – each couple including one representative from country A and one representative from country B.
Some of the questions can only be answered after the participants see each other. Allow the couples at least one hour to read and answer all the questions.
Ask the participants to take notes of exceptionally interesting (to them) answers, which can later on be used as grounds for further discussions and creation of cultural activities among the couples or in larger groups.
This method aims to improve the mutual intercultural understanding by getting information exchanged on a peer level, within small groups with participants from different countries (and if possible, continents). The questions included in the list are “culture disclosure” questions, but are also very personal, which bring this new culture even closer to those who are getting to know it, since they are making friends with someone from the said culture. As they say “you cannot hate someone, whose story you know”.
Up to 10 participants from each involved country. Two countries participating.
AGE OF PARTICIPANTS
180 min divided into 3 sessions.
Here you can download the list of 30 questions.
Computer or phone for accessing a zoom call, stable internet connection, questions on paper or in a file, possibility for notes taking.
Step 1 (60 min session) preparation – meeting with the national groups. Providing the 30 questions to the youth on both sides and allowing them time to organize and write down the answers to those questions, which can be answered or to prepare themselves for those questions, which require some simultaneous action during the live zoom call, which is to follow.
Step 2 (70 min session) - execution – organize the zoom call, start with a few opening words on the purpose of the gathering. Schedule the break-out rooms in advance and let the young people submerge in their conversations.
Step 3 (50 min session) – meeting with the national groups and debriefing before continuation with the next stages of whatever workshop scenario the peers are considering. The 30-question activity could be particularly useful if international couples would be expected to develop some product or production together, because it will create powerful teams. Proposals with ideas for common cultural activities with the other team, based on the QA sessions in couples, where strengths and shared interests/talents may appear.
This activity steps on the usage of the so called 36 questions to fall in love, which claims to bring people to a state of very close understanding and appreciation, which can set the conditions for infatuation and a rather informed relationship. A modified version of these questions is proposed for helping youth from very distant cultures (at least according to the stereotypical understanding) to get to know each other and understand how many similarities actually exist between people globally.
The set of questions could be further modified according to the needs of the facilitator and the specific workshops he/she is planning.
This activity can be used at stages (b) and (c).
(b) development of the relationship;
(c) learning about a topic.
Download the PDF version of the digital method