Cultural Diversity in Schools

1967 words 8 pages
Cultural Diversity in Schools

EDCI 401 Name Here JANUARY 31,1997

Since early American history, schools, like society, have addressed cultural diversity in different ways. In the colonial days, some attempts to adjust to cultural differences were made in the New York colony, but the dominant American culture was the norm in the general public, as well as most of the schools. As America approached the nineteenth century, the need for a common culture was the basis for the educational forum. Formal public school instruction in cultural diversity was rare, and appreciation or celebration of minority or ethnic culture essentially was nonexistent in most schools. In the
1930's, the educators were in the progressive
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When using multicultural curriculum, teachers must provide opportunities for taking perspectives as a way of helping all students appreciate other points of view, which will help them to identify, through contrast and comparison, their own personal characteristics as individuals.
With this in mind, one is then able to establish an identity, along with a sense of control over it. Not all students learn the same. Teachers need to develop an awareness for individual characteristics as a prerequisite to developing instructional strategies that will meet the learning style of each student.
Teaching to a variety of learning styles will increase the probability of student achievement, thereby leading to a greater internal locus of control and improved self-esteem (Ryan, 27-28). Some think that Cortes has the right idea by introducing five fundamental concepts that all elementary schools should introduce to help their students develop greater insight into human diversity. His first idea is individuality and group identity. He believes that students need to understand the significance of groups- racial, ethnic, gender, cultural, religious, and others. In addition, they need to understand that each individual can belong to many different groups. These groups may be based on birth others the result of choice and experience. Belonging to this group may influence the ways an individual thinks, acts believes, perceives, and may be perceived by others.


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