It's hot here in Korea! The heat has me thinking about breaking the ice. Yes to remove some tension when you first meet someone, with maybe a little humour. My definition of breaking the ice is a little different. I think breaking the ice can also be about being prepared to ask great questions, when you first meet someone. Great questions can lead into great conversations.
What kind of questions should you start the conversation off with and what should questions to avoid?
For starters, you should avoid questions related to sex, religion and politics until you get to know your language partner very well.
What questions should you ask?
Ask them questions about living in Korea as well as their homeland. Native English speakers who live in Korea commonly have issues with going to the doctor, dentist, and bank, where to shop and eat, and their sometime challenging working conditions. Try to anticipate what issues they may have. If you were in a foreign land what issues or problems would you have?
If you are able to- offer to assist them with any problems that they may have living in Korea. This will further contribute to the start of a good friendship and valuable relationships with native English speakers, and the native speakers will be more inclined to you help you later with your English needs.
Here are 10 questions to ask foreigners that that can improve your chances of developing great conversations and possible lasting friendships. Be prepared that any of these questions you will have to answer back as well.
What did you do in your country?
What did you study? What is your passion? What motivates you?
Why did you move to Korea?
What do like and don’t like about Korea? * if you use this question-be prepared for any answer and don’t be upset for when they talk about things they don’t like. The reason you want to ask this question is because you can take their ( negative answers) and maybe, offer suggestions or solutions to their problems.
Do you have any siblings? How did your family respond when you said you were moving to Korea?
Tell me about your parents, and family?
What are your favorite travel destinations and places you want to see?
What do you know about Korea?
What is your plan in 5 years?
What are some great things about your home country that you miss?
These questions are focused on talking about subjects that native people will enjoy and will most likely lead into other interesting conversations. Good luck with the ice break and hopefully it will help you to be cooler!