Strategies To Support Multicultural Instruction
Essential for developing multicultural/diverse
perspective learnings is a positive and trusting classroom environment
- one in which all students are made to feel welcome, comfortable,
and respected. Listed
below are several strategies that are particularly useful in promoting
multicultural/diverse perspective learnings in such a classroom.
Questioning techniques that personally involve
students will allow them to respond in a way that
reflects their cultural diversity and that will expose their fellow students
to those differences (Evans, 1991).
Role-playing is a versatile activity that allows students
to express their opinions in a realistic situation. Students can "trade places"
with a fellow student or a character from a literature selection (Tiedt & Tiedt, 1990).
Role-playing enables students to express and to examine their attitudes, beliefs,
and feelings about prejudice and discrimination. Poetry, biography, and powerful
fiction are excellent sources for both discussion and role-playing (Banks, 1989).
Many years of research and practice support the use of
cooperative groups to focus on students' different
strengths and styles. In addition, cooperative learning groups have been found to have
strong and consistent positive effects on social relationships between culturally
different students (Slavin, 1983). Group members become more accepting of classmates who
Exposure to Different Languages Cultures
It is important for students to recognize that English
is not the only language spoken in the United States.
Students should be exposed to speakers of various
and languages. In addition to broadening students' perspectives by introducing
them to different languages, such speakers can also share with students ideas and
values from other cultures (Tiedt & Tiedt, 1990).
Group discussions stimulate thinking. The notion that
thinking originates within individuals - and only after
that is it ready to be shared socially - has given way to the belief that some of the
best thinking results from a group's collective efforts (Sternberg, 1987). In discussions
in which students examine more than one point of view, there is ample opportunity to
enrich and refine their understanding by helping them to view their own interpretation
in the light of the interpretations of others (Alvermann, 1991).
Instructional techniques that allow for individual
differences and that add a spark of excitement to classroom activities should be used in
place of fill-in-the-blank activities. Students should be engaged in listening, speaking,
reading, writing, and thinking activities that provide opportunities for them to make
decisions and solve problems (Tiedt & Tiedt, 1990).
Go on to Values of Multicultural Instruction
Back to Role of Multicultural Literature
Reading/Language Arts Center |
Education Place |
Copyright © 1997 Houghton Mifflin Company. All Rights Reserved.
Terms and Conditions of Use.