One cool aspect of being a teacher is all the different kinds of people that I will meet when doing my job. Whether that is the students or the other teachers, there will be a mix of many cultures and beliefs that go through the halls. With this, it is important to understand the differences and be able to not have those be a problem. As a teacher, I think that having the students learn about different cultures, it will bridge the gap between them and develop a strong student body. This can be used for more than just cultural differences as well. One cultural difference that I might face in my future is a student might not be able to speak English all that well, and it is important to understand that the student is not less smart than the English-speaking students but it may seem that way because they might not be engaged in the material. For this student to succeed in the class, I will work together with the ELL teacher so that they can get the material translated as needed and complete the work.
According to Woolfolk, one aspect to develop culturally competent schools and teaching is being able to foster resilience. That the student should have a support system in place so that they can overcome their differences and succeed in the classroom. Along with this, the student should develop relationships to bridge the gap and work alongside other students (Woolfolk, 2014). I agree with this, because peer relationships are a good way to get more engaged and feel good about oneself and especially if there are cultural differences that normally get in the way of building good relationships.
An article in the Huffington Post talks about being culturally competent and how it is more crucial than ever before. The author Randy Miller explains that “Cultural competency for all teachers means recognizing and understanding the norms and tendencies of their student populations which are dictated mostly by societal, ethnic and socioeconomic influences” (Miller, 2010). This statement should be given to all future teachers because I think that it is essential to know this. That students are will learn differently depending on their culture as well and their beliefs is vital to get them to succeed. Miller also highlighted that it is important to develop relationships with students to get them engaged in the work and I can’t agree more.
Miller, Randy. (November 2010). “The importance of Culturally Competent Teachers” Huffington Post. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/randy-miller/the-importance-of-cultura_b_787876.html
Woolfolk, A.E. (2014). Education Psychology: Active Learning Edition (12th ed.). Boston. Pearson.