Factors Which May Influence Culturally Diverse Students Achievement

Factors Which May Influence Culturally Diverse Students Achievement

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world,” says Nelson Mandela. Thus, the role of teachers in catalyzing behavioral change through education entails a strong partnership with parents to develop environments for success. Together with various instructional strategies and the overall attitude of the teacher towards diversity, there are several concepts that are essential to this.

According to the Association for Childhood Education International, these include: “uniqueness of the child, appropriate learning, personalized classrooms, opportunity to experience diversity, identification and understanding of bias, positive social interaction, critical thinking, building self-esteem and use of effective guidance techniques.” Multicultural Education, Global Education, Inclusive Education, and the Anti-Bias approaches have the above concepts in common.

Families play a vital role in working with teachers to promote these concepts. In recognizing the uniqueness of the child, family conferences at school and home visits are important to determine the child’s preferences, strengths and weaknesses. Teachers will then be able to develop a program to fit the child’s individual learning style. To evaluate the child’s performance, conversations with family can be a good source of information.

Providing opportunities to experience diversity is also crucial. For example, a teacher observes the type of food served during a home visit to the student. She can assign a class project on the different cuisines of different cultures. Derman- Sparks & ABC Task Force (1989) found that,  “[f]amilies can help children become more comfortable with diversity by sharing their traditions, family photographs and items reflecting their cultural heritage (qtd. in Association for Childhood Education International).” It is important to build an atmosphere of trust and understanding between the teachers and parents as a joint responsibility in enabling the child to become an achiever.

References

(1993). The use of cooperative learning methods in multicultural surroundings improves multicultural relationships and contributes to cultural diversity inside the classroom. Heldref Publications.

(1994). Diversity: A Program for all Children. Association for Childhood Education International

admin