Geoliteracies and Place-Based Language Learning

Noticing on the Go

“We are what we see. We are products of our surroundings.” Amber Vallette

Learning Objectives: First, let’s read the learning objectives for this activity: 1) Recognize and document your surroundings in order to interpret linguistic, cultural and social meanings of what is around you; 2) Explain the meanings behind cultural practices and products.

Learning Outcome: By the end of the activity, participants will be able to interpret practices associated with a language and culture. _________________________________________________________________________________

LESCANT is an acronym that represents seven areas in which cultural issues arise when dealing with international business communication. The acronym stands for Language, Environment, Social Organization, Context, Authority, Non-Verbal, and Time.

As you explore, your group will look for examples of each category of the LESCANT framework during your walk around the campus.  We ask that you post one picture  for each letter during the walk.


  • Download the siftr app on your mobile device (made by field day). Connect to Siftr here.
  • Your group will go outside and take a short walk around the campus and look for items that fit into each LESCANT category.
  • Although you will walk around as a group, you will take pictures individually. You will walk around until 2:30pm.
  • As you walk, observe your surroundings and take pictures of different things that you observe that fit into each LESCANT category.
  • Once you decide on the images you’d like to post, upload each to the siftr app (see link above), using the geolocation tool. Pro tip: click on the + in the siftr to add a post.
  • Add the location, image, caption, and choose the LESCANT category that goes with your image.
  • Add a justification to your image (why does it fit with this category?). Please make sure that your justifications are focused so that the questions are addressed.
  • Click Post when you are done.
  • Return to the workshop room.
  • Be prepared to present your findings (5 min max) to the group using the Siftr and designate a group presenter.
  • While your group is presenting, other participants will make comments to the posts and ask a couple of questions.


Language – linguistic elements 
Environment – physical characteristics 
Social Organization – family, nature, education, religion, class, gender, etc. 
Context – personal interaction from explicit (low) to implicit (high) 
Authority -role of authority figures and how power and decision making is accomplished
 Non-verbal – gestures, dress code, proximity, etc.
Time – organize schedules, calendars, monochronic, polychronic