How Teachers Can Foster Culturally Responsive Virtues In A Classroom Setup
An educator is expected to appreciate and understand other people’s cultures apart from thoroughly examining his or her own culture in terms of values and beliefs. Cultures might be different but studies have shown that all of the cultures exhibit similar thought patterns and community behavioral similarities. In order to stay relevant and be able to be of help to learners in a culturally responsive classroom,an educator should read widely and observe extensively about the various cultures from which the students were brought up.
For an educator to fully understand and meet the needs of their learners in a culturally responsive environment they need to widen their knowledge and do extensive research about the diverse cultures from which they are brought up in. A teacher is expected to familiarize themselves with the traditions, cultural values, learning preferences, communication styles and relationship patterns of their learners as a good basis of being sensitive and helpful to their learners in a culturally sensitive classroom.
While it is possible to get a glimpse of some of the aspects of culture through reading,it is good to remember that it is only by interacting with the members of that society and observing their behaviors that a teacher can truly be said to have understood all the cultural aspects. However, you will find the cultural books to be of great value when you are preparing for class sessions, lesson plans, and learning materials. It is through a proper understanding of the learners background culture that the educator can be able to interpret the learners’ cognitive behaviors and attitudes from their standpoint of the culture in which the learners grew up. Culturally responsive classrooms demand that a teacher becomes fully aware of how the culture from which the students originates affects the learners’ cognitive and behavioral patterns.
It might appear as if it is difficult to use knowledge of various cultural patterns in a culturally responsive classroom without stereotyping and overgeneralization. In order to avoid stereotyping and over-generalization,it is important for the teacher to thoroughly examine the general cultural practices of the learners. It is through this evaluation and examination that the teacher can clearly understand how these cultural aspects are expressed in the culturally responsive classroom.
A teacher in a culturally responsive classroom should only view each learner’s cultural beliefs and attitudes as a dynamic and individualized conceptualization so that learning can be effective in a culturally responsive classroom. Each learner should be viewed as an individual first before they can be judged as a member of some homogenous group so that the risk of stereotyping is avoided because each person’s attitude and behavior is a combination of many other factors.