Impaling the Monocultural Windshield: Multicultural Education in All Things Curricular

By Heaggans, Raphael | Afro-Americans in New York Life and History, January 2014 | Go to article overview

Impaling the Monocultural Windshield: Multicultural Education in All Things Curricular


Heaggans, Raphael, Afro-Americans in New York Life and History


A popular applause line among some teachers in academic circles is "I an in favor of diversity." Of course, this line sounds plausible, but being in favor of diversity does not make anyone embrace diversity just as being for music does not make one sing. Accepting, embracing, and respecting diversity is a process; the end result makes diversity an endemic part of the schools' core. To begin the process, one of the first steps is for teachers to engage in an exploration of their prejudices, values, beliefs, attitudes, and stereotypical notions they have about their students. It may be a discomforting process, but this discomfort may be a necessary factor to dismantle the negative beliefs some teachers have about diverse students.

If teachers have completed a teacher education program without exposure to multicultural education, they can begin to take strides in empowering all students via

Afro-Americans in New York Life and History

multicultural education by considering the following:

1. Exploring what institutional practices exist within the classroom and within the school (e.g. curriculum, textbooks, omission of persons from underrepresented groups) and how to dismantle it;

2. Researching and reflecting on information related to multicultural education to familiarize self with the scholarship; and

3. Deciding how to apply the i lation to subject matter. (1)

These suggestions are in order since one cannot be moved to become a multicultural teacher without first researching ways to empower multicultural students. (2) If a teacher attempted to teach multicultural education without assessing self-biases, institutional practices within schools, and knowledge about different cultures across a variety of diversities, then s/he is not providing students with their multicultural truth of their legacies in North America. One of the tenets of multicultural education is transformation; that is, teachers are transforming themselves as they transform students and curriculum (3). The transformation process is ongoing.

Connie, an eighth grade social studies teacher, understands this transformation process all too well. She aims to include multicultural education in each of her lessons and evaluates her efforts based on the three suggestions previously provided. (4)

A Snapshot of Connie's Classroom

Connie is a "no-nonsense", quick-spoken European-American woman in her forties. She has a commanding presence that is impressive. She has a calm welcoming voice. She uses humor to get her students laughing and excited about the lessons she teaches. She has an assertive demeanor that communicates to students that while she showers them with understanding, she will not stand for disruptive behavior or indolence.

Connie's first period social studies class consists of 28 students. The breakdown is 1 African-American male, 1 African-American female, 3 Asian-American males, 1 Asian-American female, 10 White males, and 12 White females. Connie's classroom is decorated with posters of people and geographical themes. For example, there are postings of Gandhi, Miles Davis, Hank Aaron, and the Sphinx.

Exploring Institutional Practices Within the Classroom

Connie finds her eighth grade social studies curriculum to focus namely on the contributions by Europeans. To make the curriculum multicultural, Connie uses the cultural background of her students to enhance her geography/social studies curriculum. In teaching about different ethnic backgrounds and cultural perspectives, Connie has some of her students from different cultural backgrounds assist in teaching lessons. Connie has no qualms about asking different students questions related to their culture and background. Connie also solicits for parents to assist her in teaching about different countries.

Reflecting on Multicultural Education Scholarship

To learn how to make the eighth grade social studies curriculum inclusive of diverse cultures, Connie first learned that culturally relevant teaching is "a pedagogy that empowers students intellectually, socially, emotionally, and politically by using cultural referents to impart knowledge, skills, and attitudes" (5) The cultural backgrounds of the learner are the center of culturally relevant teaching; students' cultural backgrounds should serve as part of the standardized curriculum. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Impaling the Monocultural Windshield: Multicultural Education in All Things Curricular
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.