Differences in the Classroom

Differences are something everybody will have to deal with in their careers. So being a teacher, I personally will have a wide variety of differences in my classroom. According to the textbook, multicultural education promotes fairness in the schooling for all students (Woolfork, 2014). There are many differences that I am assuming that I will encounter such as differences in abilities, gender, race, ethnicity, religion and so on. These differences don’t just include students, but parents and colleagues I will work with.

I think a very important cultural difference is student’s races and that it is okay that somebody is of a different race. Stereotypes are used a lot and come into factors on first opinions unfortunately. I think since schools are becoming more diverse, it is very important to understand different backgrounds of individuals. As a future educator, I could help students become informed on others by making different races work together and get to know each other better. A key aspect is to learn as much as I can as an educator about differences among other races.

A few examples of what can be done in the classroom:

* Get to know each student individually. Learn their names and how to pronounce them correctly.

* Divide the class into smaller groups, each with the responsibility of reporting on the material from the viewpoint of a particular minority group.

* Ask students to locate cultural or even discriminatory content in textbooks or other materials.

* Ask for each student’s thoughts about the subject, acknowledging the statement of each as it is made. This lets students know from the very beginning that their thoughts have a place in the classroom, that there are differences, and that the differences will be tolerated.

* Make it safe for everyone to voice their views by accepting all views as worthy of consideration. Don’t permit scapegoat of any student or any view. Team up with a student who is alone out on a limb. (Salley, 2003)

These are a few key aspects to consider when there is diversity in the classroom. A teacher should not make anything obvious that a students is different in any way. Every student should be treated equally, no exceptions. As a future educator, I plan on taking these ideas into action so all kids feel the same as the next.

Salley, R. (2003). ENCOURAGING STUDENTS IN A RACIALLY DIVERSE CLASSROOM. Retrieved April 5, 2017, from http://www.odec.umd.edu/CD/FACILITI/RACETIPS.PDF

Woolfolk, A. (2014). Educational Psychology: Active Learning Edition.Pearson.


2 thoughts on “Differences in the Classroom”

  1. Austin I really enjoyed reading your post and thought you made some excellent points. As a future physical educator I think its great that you plan to have students from different cultures work with one another in small groups. However I think having students read about other cultures out of a textbook is not the best approach. I feel like it would be much more impactful if you were able to connect different cultures to your curriculum. One way you could do this is by assigning a project where a group of students have to present a sport or activity that is popular in a different culture. An example of this would be having a group present a dance such at tinikling or a Ghana dance. You could also incorporate sports like rugby, cricket, or bocce ball. All of these are great ways to keep students physically active while learning about other cultures,

  2. Austin,

    Great job on this post. It is very important as educators that we get to know our students. Holding these conversations will help us better understand what and how a student thinks, what a student may be going through, and, most importantly, allows us not to sound like incompetent morons. If we hold some of these conversations as a class, it may also help our students gain an understanding of just how diverse their school really is, and may change a perspective or two.


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