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Cultivating Global Citizenship in the EFL Classroom

Cultivating Global Citizenship in the EFL Classroom

In today’s reality, where everything is interconnected, the role of an English as a Second Language Teacher extends beyond language proficiency to guide the development of global citizens.  

English classes now extend our students’ understanding and knowledge of the world, bringing a wider perspective and expanding their possibilities of communicating their ideas. 

As educators in Mexico, where students typically do not have the English language input outside their classrooms, so we have a unique opportunity, and responsibility, to shape future leaders who are not only fluent in English but also culturally aware and socially responsible, becoming an active agent in the present and future society, this is what we call a “global citizen.”  

Cultivating Global Citizenship in the EFL Classroom

Having this in mind, we need to cater to our students’ needs and interests while accomplishing our class objectives. To achieve this, we need a toolbox filled with teacher resources and strategies, so let’s check some useful tips and tricks that you can implement in your classroom right away! 

  1. First things first: Embrace Cultural Diversity 

We can incorporate multicultural content to our lessons with materials that represent a diverse range of cultures. Include literature, videos, and discussions that explore customs, traditions, and perspectives from around the world. This not only broadens students' cultural awareness but also fosters respect for diversity. 

An amazing way of embracing diversity is “inviting” different speakers to the classroom. Technology is a great tool to connect your students with classrooms in other countries. Arrange virtual exchanges or invite guest speakers from different cultures to share their experiences. This provides students with firsthand insights into global issues and promotes cross-cultural understanding. 

  1. Important issues = important conversations: Integrate Global Issues into Lessons 

It is important to design assignments that encourage students to explore global challenges. This could involve researching and presenting on topics such as climate change, sustainable development, or social justice. It not only enhances language skills but also gives a sense of responsibility towards global issues. 


Dedicate time in class to discuss current events from around the world. This practice keeps students informed and encourages them to analyze and think critically about global issues. Encourage respectful and open-minded dialogue to develop their ability to consider multiple perspectives. In intermediate to advanced classes this can become part of the daily routine, where each day a different student tells the rest of the class about an important topic that´s happening somewhere in the world.  

  1. Engage in Collaborative Projects 

Another way to develop global citizenship is to organize collaborative projects with classrooms in different countries. This could involve joint assignments, shared research projects, or even collaborative presentations. Working with peers from diverse backgrounds enhances teamwork and communication skills while fostering a sense of global connection. 

Most importantly, be a role model for global citizenship in your own actions. Share your experiences with international collaborations, trips, or interactions with people from different backgrounds. Your personal stories can inspire students to see the value of global connections. 

Remember that fostering global citizenship in the EFL classroom is not just about language proficiency but about nurturing individuals who can thrive in an interconnected world. The time you dedicate in your classroom to creating these types of activities can impact a student's life and our world. 

Cultivating Global Citizenship in the EFL Classroom

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