Diversity in the Classroom Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

student comes from a middle class family in Bangkok. Status is of primary importance in Thailand. The reason is that hierarchical relations are at the heart of Thai society . As a result, titles are of primary importance in Thailand (Kiss, Bow, or Shake Hands, p. 385). Public displays of affection between members of the opposite sex are not tolerated and it is considered to be extremely rude to point one's foot at anyone. Never should you cross your legs in front of an older person, and you should avoid to cross your legs with one leg resting on the other knee (Kiss, Bow, or Shake Hands, p. 386).

I think that the new Thai female student on her first day in class will find my behavior as an afro-american teacher in a highly diverse class as sending out messages to guide and facilitate the learning process of the children that members of different racial or ethnic groups are to be respected. She will find my teaching style very much in contrast to the stereotypes she sees in ordinary daily life in this regard. My verbal and non-verbal cues are directed to begin helping my students to become individuals able to form strong and self-positive images about themselves and to grow up without bias but with respect to people who are different from themselves. Her first impression of me will be that I respectfully listen to all students and answer their questions to my best. She will see that I try to make sure that the individual student does not have the feeling that it is bad to ask such a question. She will also see I immediately address the situation when I witness that a child says something disrespectful, embarrassing or hurtful about another child and then directly speak to the child saying that it is not ok to behave that way and asking it how it might feel himself would it be the target victim of such inappropriate comments. I consider this to be crucial to raise the child's sensitivity to racial or ethnic differences in class (see Oesterreich, 1995, p. 1). She will feel that I am strongly engaged in encouraging my students to talk about their differences sending out messages to think critically about what they see on TV and in books, movies, greeting cards, and comics. I do so verbally by using accurate and fair images in contrast to stereotypes, and encouraging the children to talk about their differences. But I also make use of non-verbal cues such as including books, toys, and materials in my teaching program that have ethnic or racial issues at their center. I have to admit that I myself constantly must make me aware that I have to face my own biased attitudes in order to help foster all the student's growth (see Precious Young Children, 1999, p. 1).

As an afro-american female I do not represent the dominant group…

Sources Used in Document:


Hendry, J. Addressing cultural diversity in the classroom. (Created on: April 01, 2008). Retrieved 11 August 2011 from www.helium.com > ... > Secondary School > School Bullying & Violence.

Morrison, T., & Conaway, W.A, & Borden, G.A. (1994). Kiss, Bow, or Shake Hands. Avon, Massachusetts: Adams Media Corporation.

Oesterreich, L. (1995). Insensitivity to Physical, Racial, or Ethnic Differences. Retrieved 11 August 2011 from www.pbs.org/kcts/preciouschildren/diversity/read_insensitivity.html.

Precious Young Children: Teaching Young Children To Resist Bias. (1999). Retrieved 11 August 2011 from www.pbs.org/kcts/preciouschildren/diversity/read_teaching.html.

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