Knowledge of student culture is critical to effective teaching and interaction with students (Gollnick and Chinn, 2003). Assessment of classroom diversity helps to bring a greater awareness of the diversity in our world as it unfolds in today’s classrooms.
Diversity and cultural awareness provide the necessary context for beginning to understanding our students and the real life issues they confront and for developing effective instructional strategies to address them.
The CIRLI method requires each teacher to analyze the diversity of his/her class and be ready to provide a positive and safe learning environment for all students. Some of the main diversity issues that we need to be sensitive to are the following:
As teachers, understanding diversity includes learning how historic and continuing social injustices and violence impact diverse populations by virtue of their identities. For example:
Free 5 CPDU online workshop through Northeastern Illinois University’s College of Education
Integrate pressing life issues into classes across the curriculum to effectively engage students in learning and support social emotional growth
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