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close this bookAnimation Skills (Peace Corps)
close this folderFishbowl
View the documentCommunication skills
View the documentFishbowl activity
View the documentVariations on the fishbowl
View the documentRole plays/drama
View the documentIn the neighborhood....

Fishbowl activity



1 Peace Corps Volunteer


1 Host country counterpart
3 Members of a village committee


The PCV and his or her counterpart are meeting with members of a village committee to discuss the possibility of launching a guinea worm education campaign in the village.


The PCV is a bit nervous and tends to dominate the conversation by talking too fast and speaking a lot of franglais with local language words mixed in. She or he interrupts the others as they try to ask questions or clarify information. She or he tends to speak in formal/text book language about guinea worm (e.g., Dracunculiasis, crustacean host cyclops. subcutaneous tissue.) She or he hands out a written article to committee members who do not read. She or he does not give her or his counterpart the opportunity to facilitate the meeting and in the end everyone is frustrated. The PCV complains that nobody understands her or him.


She or he is diplomatically patient with the dominating PCV but is keenly aware of the discomfort of committee members, who do not appreciate the manner in which the meeting is taking place. When she or he begins to speak or tries to clarify main points for the committee members in the local language, the PCV interrupts and finally the counterpart becomes frustrated with the PCV.


The members are mostly there to listen, but their facial expressions clearly indicate that they are not able to follow the conversation. They look to the counterpart for clarification but she or he doesn't find the opportunity to help them understand. They ask questions about guinea worm life cycle (e.g., Where does the guinea worm come from? How do we get rid of it? How can it be in my body for a year without me feeling it?) They are confused with responses given and become frustrated with the meeting.