Culture and Diversity in the Classroom

3 Things I Learned

  1. The 5 dimensions of multicultural education – a) content integration, b) the construction of knowledge, c) reduction of prejudice, d) and equity pedagogy, and e) an empowering school culture. These are all things that need to be taken into account with multicultural education practices.
  2. Stereotype threat – “ the idea that when stereotyped individuals are in situations where the stereotype applies, they bear and extra emotional burden.” (p 205). I never before realized that students who are even just aware and conscious that the stereotype exists feel burdened and anxious about it.
  • Gender Roles and Biases in Children’s literature – before this week’s lecture, I never really payed much attention to the gender roles and biases portrayed in children’s literature. Male characters are more widely represented than females are. However, when they are present, often times, they carry very strong biases and gender roles. I think that it is important for children to be able to ‘see themselves’ in or be able to relate themselves or their families to the characters of some books.

2 Connections I Made

  1. One connection I can make is taken from my experience throughout elementary and high school. I can remember many times where my male classmates got pulled out of class to help the principal/ teachers with assembly set up and take down and other chores around the school. I remember that especially in elementary school, all the students always wanted to help and, in more cases than not, the boys were chosen over the girls. I remember my friends and I being disappointed that we didn’t get picked to help, but then also didn’t think too much of it because we thought that was what the boys were “supposed” to do.
  2. A second connection I can make relates to the idea of stereotype threat. In elementary school, the idea that boys were better at phys ed than girls were was a big thing. Personally, I am not an overly athletic person, and I thinking back on it now, I definitely felt the emotional and cognitive affects of being subject to this belief.

1 Question I still have

  1. How can I incorporate multiculturalism into my future classroom, where all my students can learn about different cultures while also feeling that their own culture is acknowledged and accepted?

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