It is obvious that public schools have students from various backgrounds. This has influenced the manner in which they understand information. The presence of students from different races, tribes, communities, and social status has also made the teaching process to be challenging (Gay, 2010).
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A modern day teacher requires skills that will ensure that students with different languages, cultures, and abilities are included in the process of learning. The relationship between a teacher and a student in most cases is dialectical, culturally embedded, mediated by perceptions, and situational (Gay, 2002). For a learning process to be effective, appreciation of cultural diversity is an important aspect to be considered. The use of cultural responsive pedagogy proves to be an effective way of handling these diversities (Gay, 2002).
Cultural diversity is a serious problem in the learning process. The level of intermingling among students affects the learning process. In some cases, students feel discriminated due to the various ways in which information is communicated.
The need for proper communication techniques by teachers is necessary in ensuring that learning process takes place effectively (Gay, 2010). A system that handles diverse cultures offers a suitable way that ensures proper contact between the learner and the educator in a classroom environment.
The most common problem arises from the behavior of the learner in the class. For instance, students from different cultural backgrounds have unique behavioral patterns (Gay, 2010). This may equally lead to conflict between the code of ethics used in school and the student’s cultural background.
A typical example can be drawn from case whereby a student is required to maintain silence in class and yet his or her culture promotes socialization. This affects the learning process of the student because the latter confuse between calmness and retribution.
Students have diverse learning styles. Learners who are forced to use specific learning styles that they are not acquainted with might develop some level of dissatisfaction. Teaching a frustrated student has proved to be quite cumbersome (Gay, 2002). For example, the level of understanding lesson content is very low for a learner who is dissatisfied.
Students are also fond of forming groups based on common and shared interests. Hence, students with different interests might be abandoned by other peers. The most common interests that group students together include common language and race. In most cases, these types of isolation might lead to depression of the learner. The teaching and learning processes also become complex in such case scenarios.
Academic performance is varied among students. An open comparison between academically weak students and those who are bright may also lead to a sense of being dejected (Gay, 2002). The bright students may develop superiority complex and consequently affect the attentiveness of others in class.
Moreover, learners should be offered a learning atmosphere that makes them feel equal to each other. Some cases of attention-seeking students might arise especially if such learners feel that their teachers are discriminatory. A student who feels a form of discrimination based on gender, race, and social status might resolve to violence or complete withdrawal from the learning process (Guild, 2001).
These are some instances that can be attributed to cultural diversity. For such cases to be avoided, the teacher should develop a mechanism of cultural acceptance. This research paper analyzes the possibility of eliminating these problems using cultural responsive pedagogy in the teaching process (Gay, 2002). If some of these problems are eliminated using this method, then student achievement will be significantly improved.
This research study investigates the above challenge by offering proposals that can be put in place in order to improve ways of handling cultural diversities. It is similar to how an action research would be carried out ((McVicker, n.d).The analysis of the available information on the effectiveness of the above method of teaching is extremely important.
It will enable the acceptance of the method as a way of handling cultural diversities in the classroom, or offer advice on the implementation of other techniques (Gay, 2010). The second option will be adopted if the study notices that there is positive change in disparity of the overall performance of the students in a culturally diverse classroom.
This paper will also address factors affecting cultural differences in class. The analysis of different ethnicities and the learning atmosphere will offer detailed information on these dynamics (Guild, 2001). There are quite a number of action research studies on the cultural and classroom environment will definitely increase understanding on the composite nature of the modern learning environment (McVicker, n.d).
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This study plans to offer the positive and negative aspects of cultural diversity in the process of learning. This will help in developing ways of dealing with the negative aspects of cultural diversity in class (Gay, 2010). Moreover, exploration of the available methods that can be used to handle the problem of culture in a classroom environment will also be given key attention. Information on the available techniques of handling students from varied cultural backgrounds is essential towards the skill development of a teacher.
This study has identified the following three study questions to be essential in addressing the research questions.
- What are the critical cultural consequences of using culturally responsive pedagogy in the learning process?
- How does cultural responsive pedagogy enhance the learning process and the classroom atmosphere?
- Can cultural responsive pedagogy integrate the communities of learners into one unit that is more effective in the learning process?
Effective methods will be used with the aim of examining and providing the most appropriate answers to the questions posed above.
Gay, G. (2002). Preparing For Culturally Responsive Teaching. Journal of Teacher Education, 53(2), 106-116.
Gay, G. (2010). Culturally Responsive Teaching: Theory, Research, and Practice: Multicultural Education Series. New York, NY: Teachers College Press.
Guild, P. B. (2001). Diversity, Learning Style and Culture. Web.
McVicker, C. (n.d). Inquiring Illinois Teachers Want to Know: Action Research Questions from the Field! Illinois reading council journal 37(1), 22-26.