Thursday, March 13, 2014

First Person: Final Questions in Multicultural Education Course.

As a education student, the main focus in my classes have been recognizing the diversity of our nation today. These are the final questions asked to me in the class. I found myself very passionate about question number four. These are just some responses to questions with the use of the knowledge I have gained in the class or by personal experience. These short answers are just my two grains of salt so thanks for reading!
1.What are some multicultural concepts that you would teach in your classroom. Why are these concepts a critical part of your classroom curriculum, and what strategies will you use to teach the concepts?

The main concept I would like to teach in my classroom is the fact that each and every student is different, even if there are similarities with children from the same ethnic or cultural group, everyone is still a unique individual. I would want my students know that I will try my best to accommodate all of the learning styles that they might benefit from the most. These 2 concepts are mostly critical to my classroom because I believe that open-mindedness and understanding of one's self and others will promote a healthy classroom environment. The students, in an environment they can be comfortable with will be able to have less social issues to worry about and be more focused on learning the material in my class. Also, identifying the learning styles of my students will help me develop plans for them in a manner that they can all learn the material in all of their unique ways. I will be sure to use the major types of learning which I categorize to be, competitive and cooperative, hands-on work, self-study work, and group assignments.

3.What if the school’s student population is not diverse? Should you still provide a multicultural education to an all-Black, all-Native American, all-Hispanic or all-white school? Explain.

Just because the classroom does not have diversity does not mean the whole world stops being diverse. I will still provide a multicultural experience for my students to inform them of other cultures that they will definitely encounter in the real world. The advantage of a classroom like this would be that, while all students are unique, I have a higher chance of not having to assemble a lesson plan that changes too often. Students will have a higher chance of having similar culture and therefore will possibly be slightly easier to develop lesson plans for. I will still provide them multicultural education because it is my duty to help them understand the many other different kinds of culture in the world. If I do not provide this, my students are at the risk of developing ethnocentric philosophies.

4. How would you respond to a colleague who, referring to students of diversity, said, “Don’t you think it’s about time they gave up their traditions and started to act like Americans?

My response to my colleague would be, “They are acting like Americans. The United States of America has received many immigrants and different cultured people across its entire history. The American way of the “melting pot” might have been the norm in the past but one has to accept that times are changing and that is just not true anymore. Melt enough of something into a mixture and it will change. You might think that America absorbs people and turns them into Americans but if you look at it historically, it is actually people who make America what it is. We have traditions even today that are from other cultures. They are shining ever so brightly in our country because of the vision of the founders of having a haven for all people. You can argue that the founding fathers of the country only had white males in mind but you can see the power of America itself. It can change itself to accommodate anyone who is not holding anyone else back. It provides opportunity to everyone and even if the old ways of inequality still linger, the story of America is still being written. Think a lot before you speak of giving up traditions. These traditions are the voices of the ancestors of a culture that still speak today. These are traditions and cultures build unto what we call America.”

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