The Multicultural Classroom

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One of the greatest challenges a teacher faces today is a multicultural classroom. All aspects of each culture must be addressed and kept in mind when a teacher is designing their curriculum. Today’s classroom is more diverse in every sense, and a teacher must be prepared for any scenario he or she is faced with. In order for a multicultural education to be effective, there needs to be a combination of challenges that takes into consideration the assets and disabilities each student may or may not bring into the classroom. According to James A. Banks from the Center for Multicultural Education, “Multicultural education is an idea, an educational reform movement, and a process (Banks, 1997). Banks identified multicultural education in five dimensions: “content integration, the knowledge construction process, prejudice reduction, an equity pedagogy, and an empowering school culture and social structure” (Banks, 1995a). “The knowledge construction process describes how teachers help students to understand, investigate, and determine how the biases, frames of reference, and perspectives within a discipline influence the ways in which knowledge is constructed within it” (Banks, 1996). “An empowering school culture and social structure is created when the culture and organization of the school are transformed in ways that enable students from diverse racial, ethnic, and gender groups to experience equality and equal status. The implementation of this dimension requires that the total environment of the school be reformed, including the attitudes, beliefs, and action of teachers and administrators, the curriculum and course of study, assessment and testing procedures, and the styles and strategies used by teachers.”(Banks, 1996) In my opinion, some steps required to make a multicultural classroom effective are the following: 1. Each student must have the opportunity to be treated equally in order to achieve his or her goals in a classroom. 2. No...
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