Culturally Responsive Teaching “Too many students of color have not been achieving in school as well as they should for far too long”
Introduction of “Culturally Responsive Teaching” • Reverse the underachievement of students of color • The book suggests many ways of reversing this trend • Culturally responsive teaching cannot solve all the problems alone • Achieving in school is more than just academics
5 Major Assertions of “Culturally Responsive Teaching” • Culture Counts • Conventional Reform is Inadequate • Intention Without Action Is Insufficient • Strength and Vitality of Cultural Diversity • Test Grades Are Symptoms, Not Causes, Of Achievement Problems
5 Major Assertions of “Culturally Responsive Teaching” • Culture Counts • The Heart of what we do as educators Culture is defined as a dynamic system of social values, cognitive codes, behavioral standards, worldviews, and beliefs used to give order and meaning to our own lives as well as the lives of others
5 Major Assertions of “Culturally Responsive Teaching” • Conventional Reform Is Inadequate • Conventional standards for improving people of color are set up for failure • Biggest target for failure – At Risk Students “This is due largely to their being deeply enmeshed in a deficit orientation- that is, Concentrating on what ethnically, racially, and culturally different students don’t have and can’t do – and their claims of culturally neutrality”
5 Major Assertions of “Culturally Responsive Teaching” • Intention Without Action is Insufficient • Challenge The Status Quo • Having good intentions and being aware is not good enough
5 Major Assertions of “Culturally Responsive Teaching” • Strength and Vitality of Cultural Diversity • Cultural diversity is a strength • Teach to different cultures • Navajo Case Study Example
5 Major Assertions of “Culturally Responsive Teaching” • Test Scores and Grades are Symptoms, Not Causes, of Achievement Problems • Test scores do not tell why people of color are not performing at acceptable levels
Issues • Cultural Blindness is Acceptable • Culture has nothing to do with Education • Teachers do not have adequate knowledge about how their teaching practices hinder students of color learning
Benefits of Culturally Responsive Teaching • It acknowledges the legitimacy of different cultural heritages • Connects meaningfulness between home and school experiences • Different instructional strategies are used to different learning styles • Teaching to embrace their own culture and other cultures • CRT is comprehensive, multidimensional, empowering, transformative, and emancipatory
The Power of Culturally Responsive Caring “We are going to work hard; we are going to have fun doing it; and we are going to do it together.”
Four Key Topics Related to Caring • Characterizing caring • Predominant teacher attitudes and expectations toward ethnically and culturally different students • Effects of teacher expectations on instructional behaviors and students’ achievement • Becoming more culturally competent in classroom caring
Characterizing Caring • Aesthetic and authentic • Fostering warmth, unity, safety, and security • Responding to needs • Enable ethically and culturally diverse students to be open • Build confidence , courage, compassion • Being academically demanding • Preparing students to deal with social realities and transformation
Attributes of Caring in Detail • Person and Performance • Teachers didn’t limit interactions to just teaching but showed concern for the students • Action-Provoking • Emotion, intellect, faith, ethics, action and accountability (use actions) • Effort and Achievement • Be demanding but facilitative, supportive and accessible, both personal and professional • Multidimensional Responsiveness • Understanding cultural influences and using knowledge to guide actions
Trends and Effects • Influences on Expectations • Most important Racial Identity, gender, ethnicity, social class, and home language • Persistent Trends in Expectations • Significantly influence the quality of learning opportunities provided to students • Affected by factors that have no basis in fact • Assumptions about connections among the intellectual capability of students • Teachers’ expectations and sense of professional efficiency are interrelated
Culturally Responsive Caring • Acquiring a Knowledge Base • From learning styles, essentials of culture, etc • Personal and Professional Self-Awareness • Self-Analyses • Dialoguing About Cultural Diversity • Talk with other teachers and professionals to help
Conclusion • Caring teachers are “warm demanding” academic taskmasters • ALL students are held accountable for high academic efforts and performance • “there is no excuse for not trying to learn”
Communication and Culture “Language is at the very heart of teaching” making assignments, giving directions, explaining events, dispersing praise or criticism, etc. “Communication cannot exist without culture and culture cannot be known without communication” “Communication is the quintessential way in which humans make meaningful connections with one another, whether as caring, sharing, loving, teaching, or learning“ a communication barrier or deficit makes it difficult for students to share what they know, so students may know much more than they are able to communicate. “The languages used in different cultural systems strongly influence how people think, know, feel, and do”
Myths about Language Diversity • One form of “Standard English” exists and is always used in the formal/official functions of U.S. institutions • There are many different versions of applied English. • A particular version may be more appropriate for the given situation, purpose, and audience. • Mastery of one language or a single variant of it fails to equip students with the linguistic skills the real world demands. • Speaking a dialect or another language interferes with mastery of English • Research shows that those who are more proficient in their first language learn English faster and better. • Language learning and teaching are primarily about form and structure • Use is more important (understanding the social context and uses) • Oral English proficiency is a precursor to improved academic achievement for ELL adolescents • Need authentic opportunities to practice oral English skills • The prominence of English will be jeopardized
English Plus • English Plus- using and teaching other languages along with Academic English • It is a viable alternative to English Only. • English Only instructional practices are detrimental to achievement • Labeled as dual language learning, bilingualism, bidialectism, code-shifting, code-switching, and linguistic hybridity. • Results and recommendations of English Plus for bilingual students: • Most research has been done in elementary schools • The more instructional support given in their first language combined with balanced instruction in English, the greater the academic achievement • Students perform better when they read and learn in their dominant language • Well-developed literacy skills in first language facilitate second language literacy development • Students performed better and felt more accepted when teachers were committed to maintain their primary languages and cultures while teaching them English
English Plus: Ebonics • Instead of banning the use of Ebonics in the classroom, have respect for Ebonics and Academic English • Teach rule-governing patterns in both languages • Teach explicit contrasts of both languages and cultures • Understand the cultural frameworks in which linguistic choices are embedded • Establish reciprocal and trustful relationships between students and teachers • Compare grammatical patterns of Ebonics with Academic English
Different Discourse Styles • Problem Solving and Task Engagement • Conventional classroom • Single answer questions • Deductive approaches • Focus on details • Students of color tend to be more • Inductive • Communal • Interactive • African American and Latino • Normally create a “stage” or “setting” prior to performance tasks • This technique is used to get them focused and in the mood and mode to perform • Asian Americans • Learn within the context of a group • Use process known as collaborative and negotiated problem solving • Each member presents his/her solutions, ideas, or opinions • A solution is reached which is a compromise of several possibilities • Participation • Conventional classroom requires passive-receptive posture (listen quietly, sit still, eye-contact, take turns talking, etc) • participatory-interactive (Speakers expect listeners to engage them actively through motion, movement, and vocalized responses as they are speaking) • Demonstrated by African Americans, Latino Americans, and Native Hawaiians Another feature among African Americans: call-response – listeners giving encouragement, commentary, compliments, and even criticism to speaker as they are talking Native Hawaiians use co-narration or talk story – work collaboratively or talk together to tell a story, create an idea, or complete a task.
Different Discourse StylesOrganizing Ideas • Topic-associative • More than one issue is addressed at once • Thinking and speaking seem to be circular and seamless • Creativity in delivery is as important to them as content • Rely on intonation, rhythm, tempo, nonverbal gestures, vowel elongation, and repetition • Relationships among segments of the discourse are assumed or inferred rather than explained • May sound disjointed, unfocused, unprepared, or rambling to those who are unfamiliar with it • Prolific use of conjunctions • Used by Native Americans, African Americans, Latino Americans, and Native Hawaiians • Topic-centered • One issue at a time • Arrange facts in logical, linear order • Speech episodes tend to be short and precise • Remain focused on the issue • Absence of unnecessary elaboration • Clear, descriptive details • Purpose is to convey information (not a persuasion, critique, or commentary) • Attempt to separate facts from opinion and information from emotions • Used by European Americans mostly
Different Discourse StylesTaking Positions and Presenting Self • European Americans • Relate to issues and materials as reporters • Responsibility is to present the facts as accurately as possible • Consider the truth or merits of an idea to be intrinsic • Avoid or minimize opposition • Think emotions interfere with a person’s ability to reason • Asian Americans • Tend to take moderate positions • Seek out compromise positions • Look for ways to accommodate opposites • Hesitant to critique or analyze • Give factually rich descriptions of issues and events • Use phrases such as “I don’t know, but…” or “I may be wrong, but…” • Ritualistic laughter to diffuse confusion or being uncomfortable African Americans • Tend to take positions of advocacy • Tend to express personal points of view • More likely to challenge authority and expertise • Present their case using facts, opinions, emotions, and reason
Culturally Responsive Pedagogy Fundamental aim is to empower ethnically diverse students through academic success, cultural affiliation and personal efficacy. Knowledge in the form of curriculum content is central to this empowerment. Knowledge must be accessible and connected to students. Students should be considered co-designers of their education. Curriculum content should be chosen and delivered in ways that are meaningful to students.
Five Key Observations • Curriculum content is crucial to academic performance. • Quality of textbooks is an important factor in student achievement. • Meaningful content improves student learning. • Relevant content includes information about the histories, cultures and issues of students’ ethnic groups. • Content is derived from various sources, many of which exist outside formal boundaries of schooling.
Importance of Textbooks • Textbooks are the basis of 70% to 95% of all classroom instruction. • Most students consider their authority incontestable. • Most are controlled by the dominant group and confirm its culture. • Inadequacies of textbook coverage of cultural diversity can be avoided by including accurate, wide-ranging, and appropriately contextualized content about different ethnic groups’ histories, cultures and experiences on a regular basis.
Literary and Trade Books • Ethnic literature important because it can provide valuable insights into the social consciousness, cultural identity and historical experiences of ethnic groups. • Ethnic literature and trade books are conduits for achieving mastery of academic skills as well as other dimensions of learning, such as interest, motivation and time-on-task. • Also reduce fear and prejudices toward unfamiliar others.
Books • Historically have been biased and stereotypical but are improving. • Culturally validating books are valuable complements to textbooks. • Can profoundly enrich student learning about the culture, history and life experiences of ethnically diverse groups. • Multicultural Review is a useful resource. It regularly publishes lists of recommended books, films, videotapes and microfilm collections on a wide variety of ethnic groups.
Mass Media • Include television programming, films, newspapers, magazines and music videos. • Powerful sources of curriculum content about ethnic and cultural diversity. • Easily accessed and have a powerful influence. • Has gotten better but should be monitored and corrected if needed by classroom instruction. • Ideological Management are actions of mass media to deliberately exclude or add information to create certain images, shield consumers and to teach specific moral, political and social values.
Some media programs are genuine advancements in making society more ethnically inclusive and egalitarian. Increasing numbers of women and ethnic groups are involved in media programming– writing, producing, directing and performing. Still subtle racial stereotypes in films, television and other popular media can leave deep emotional and psychological scars on children of targeted groups. Debunking myths and ethnic biases in the mass media should be a central feature of culturally responsive teaching.
Culturally Diverse Curriculum Content Effects • Most multicultural curriculum effects on student achievement in reading and writing derive more from "experimental" and "special" projects than from regularly taught content, topics, skills, and courses. • They also tend to combine reading and writing with some kind of ethnic literature. • In general, mathematics and science programs targeted to students of color have improved achievement
Other Positive Effects. • More interest and enjoyment in reading multicultural books. • More positive attitudes toward reading and writing in general. • Increased knowledge about various forms, structures, functions, and uses of written language. • Expanded vocabularies, sentence patterns, and decoding abilities. • Better reading comprehension and writing performance. • Longer written stories that reflect more clarity and cohesiveness. • Enhanced reading rate and fluency. • Improved self-confidence and self-esteem. • Greater appreciation of their own and others' cultures
Improving Culturally Diverse Curriculum Content • Much more cultural content is needed in all school curricula about all ethnic groups. • Educators should be diligent in ensuring that curriculum content about ethnically diverse groups is accurate, authentic, and comprehensive. • This goal can be accomplished by working in collaboration with ethnic scholars, community leaders, and "cultural brokers," as well as combining information from many disciplines to generate culturally relevant curriculum content. • Students and teachers should become scholars of ethnic and cultural diversity, and generate their own curriculum content.
Chapter 6 • Cultural Congruity in Teaching and Learning Congruity: The act or state of agreeing or conforming. One might wish that scholars, researchers and educators eager to demonstrate their erudition and mastery of the language would use terminology which is in more universal usage and which is intended more to illuminate than obfuscate.
Introduction Webster Grove Writing Project • St. Louis inner-city • Focused on improving black students’ writing • (1) Did the writing of the Black and White students contain systematically different characteristics? • (2) Was nonstandard dialect a prevalent aspect of Black writers in the suburban school district? • (3) Were nonstandard dialect forms scored more negatively during assessment than other nonstandard forms?
Webster Groves, con’t • Improving students' writing • Stronger, more informal voice and greater personal involvement with the subject on the part of African American basic writers • Was the success they were witnessing due to changes in teaching methods? • Clash between white, female teachers and black, male students
Multidimensional Cultural Congruent Instruction • Teachers became aware of their own cultural and political biases • Rather than a linguistic clash, it was cultural estrangement • Black male versus typical white female classroom
Solutions? • Build on strengths • Shift processes to ways that are more relevant to young, black males • Encourage cooperative learning • “Play” with the language • Student choice
Active & Effective Engagement Kamehameha Early Education Program (KEEP) • Last King of Hawaii • Language arts program • Anthropological knowledge and the importance of cultural compatibility in learning • Peer teaching and learning • Take turns when speaking • Talk Story
Ethnic-Centered Classes & Schools Multicultural Literacy Program • US DoEd funded in Ypsilanti, MI • Holistic approach to reading/writing instruction • Integrate the cultural/social life of the community into teaching of reading and writing • Requires significant changes in teacher behavior and attitudes
Conclusion • Has proved to be effective • Requires accommodations by both students and teachers • Shift in thinking to ethnic-centered classrooms • Build bridges – Expand horizons
Chapter 7 A Personal Case of Culturally Responsive Teaching Praxis
This chapter includes the author’s personal stories relating to her teaching of Culturally Responsive Teaching to prospective teachers. • Much of the advice could help a somebody holding a workshop in a High School teaching teachers Culturally Responsive Teaching • A few examples of her teaching style include:
Being Supportive and Facilitative • Try to be a facilitator of learning, allow students to come to their own conclusions. • Assist when necessary. • Teach students to use what they have learned about different cultural and ethnic groups to apply it to the classroom.
Rituals and Routines • Ice-Breaking conversations • Ex. Break students up into pairs and have them describe the other’s physical features, without mentioning race/ethnicity. • Ex. Have students describe and explain their ethnic background (similar to our cultural collage). • The ice-breakers help prepare the students for the class. • Routines give order and cohesion to the class
Learning Cooperatively and Successfully • Allow each student to succeed to the best of their ability; don’t grade on a curve or make the class competitive. • Enable students to learn by doing, learn cooperatively, and exhibit modeling techniques.
Chapter 8 Epilogue: Looking Back and Projecting Forward.
CRT • Culturally Responsive teaching has been proven to increase test scores in multiple studies. • However, many teachers are hesitant to deviate from the norm in order to properly teach to different ethnic groups
Incremental Efforts • While the entire school system will not change overnight, an individual can. • It is important that this change should endure, but many teachers give up if the benefits are not immediate, or test scores do not rise appropriately.