The Local Scoop: Engaging Russian Tourists in Visits to Singapore by Amanda Lerner

created on Oct 15, 2017 modified on Jul 03, 2018 05:52


Pan Pacific Singapore

Singapore is increasingly a popular tourism destination for Russians and Russian-speakers, and yet few hotels cater specifically to Russian tourists. Hotel websites are largely available in English with no Russian version, and the guides available online for Russian tourists rely largely on the typical site-seeing descriptions and the same pictures as every other site. There is a need in Singapore for locally-written, culturally-targeted tourism materials for Russian visitors to Singapore. My students teamed up with the Pan-Pacific hotel to produce a tourism guide for Russian speakers, keeping in mind the cultural contexts of both Singapore and Russia. They utilized their own knowledge of Singapore and their experiences as non-natives navigating the city (none of the students are originally from Singapore) to create their materials.

This 10-week project was designed for Russian First Year, Second Semester learners with Intermediate Low proficiency. The learners are enrolled in a YIL1202R (Beginning Russian 2) in a 4-year program at a Yale-NUS College in a Urban Singapore setting, although our class meets via teledistance. The course meets 3 times per week for two sessions of ninety minutes, one section of sixty minutes, and a sixty-minute session with a local language tutor each week. The students designed tourism materials for Russian tourists staying at the Pan-Pacific Singapore hotel.

This project covers all three modes of communication. Students interact with one another in the TL to create the project. Additionally, by interviewing native TL speakers, students navigate the interpersonal mode of communication in an interview setting. Further, by assigning examples of Russian tourism sites to students and asking them to compare and contrast the resources, students engage in the interpretive mode of communication. Finally, at the end of the project, the students presented their own individual contribution to the larger project to both me and their peers in the TL, engaging in the presentational mode of communication.

My students were most interested in the Marketing Career Cluster, and so decided to design a tourist pamphlet. Using Adobe InDesign, the students formatted need-to-know information about 12 different tourism sites in Singapore. Additionally, by working with the Pan Pacific hotel, the students learned more and became engaged in the Hospitality and Tourism Career Cluster. They thoroughly researched what Russian tourism habits entail, asked professionals at the Pan Pacific about the perceived needs of their guests, and created content to meet those needs.

National Foreign Language Resource Center
Oct. 28, 2017

Language: Russian

Subject Area(s): economy, geography, national identity, restaurant, society, the environment, communities, values, travel, traditions, creativity, entertainment

Instructional Context

Product Description:
The students have decided that the best format for their tourist materials is a large map with pop-out text boxes describing the locations they have chosen. The map will be presented in the form of a tri-fold pamphlet.

Audience Location:
In and around the Pan-Pacific Singapore Hotel.

Product Target Culture:
The students will be targeting Russian culture by taking into consideration Russian cultural travel norms.

Audience Role:
The audience will use the materials to explore a more local-centric side to Singapore

Heritage Learners:

Target Audience Description:
The target audience for this project are Russian tourists staying at the Pan-Pacific Singapore hotel. With the help of the Senior Marketing Communication Manager at the hotel, the materials that the students create will be distributed to the guests of the hotel in their rooms. Students will visit the hotel to meet with the staff in November and gather information on the demographics of the Russian tourists who stay at the hotel.

Language Proficiency

ILR Scale Writing:

ACTFL Scale:
2 4 5 6

ILR Scale Reading:
1 2 3

ILR Scale Listening:
1 2 3

ILR Scale Speaking:
1 2 3 4

ILR Scale Writing:
1 3

World Readiness Standards


Cultural comparisons

Relating Cultural Products to Perspectives

Acquiring Information and Diverse Perspectives

Relating Cultural Practices to Perspectives

Making Connections

School and Global
Lifelong Learning


21st Century Skills

Information, Media, and Technology Skills

Life and Career Skills
Social and Cross Cultural Skills

Information, Media, and Technology Skills

Interdisciplinary Themes
Civic Literacy
Financial, Economic, Business and Entrepreneurial Literacy

Life and Career Skills
Initiative and Self-Direction

Information, Media, and Technology Skills
Creativity and Innovation
Media Literacy
Technology Literacy
Information Literacy

Life and Career Skills
Flexibility and adaptability

Interdisciplinary Themes
Global Awareness

Life and Career Skills
Leadership and responsibility
Productivity and Accountability

Project Sequence Overview

Preparing for the Project

1. What do you like about your city? - A short essay homework assigned before a week before the entry event. more detail

Launching the Project

1. Showing off Singapore! - Entry Event - This task was the real entry event into the project. more detail

Managing the Project

1. Get the Lay of the Land - Looking at available materials to understand what tourism materials are available. more detail

2. Field Trip to Pan-Pacific Preparation - Preparing students to take full advantage of a field trip to the Pan-Pacific Singapore Hotel. more detail

3. Interview a Russian speaker - Interviewing Russians to understand what they look for when they travel. more detail


1. Assessment - Self and Teacher - How students will assess their own project, and how I will assess it. more detail