“Cultural and Linguistic Diversity and School Failure” Barbara T. Bowman
The article called “Cultural and Linguistic Diversity and School Failure” brings attention of readers to the issue of conflicts in modern schools. The text can be divided into two parts. While in the first part Ms. Bowman brings into focus teacher-student conflicts, the second part is dedicated to class, culture and language related issues. The information given is supported by data and examples and is of interest to specialists in cultural and linguistic studies.
To begin with, Ms. Bowman gives an insight into teacher-student conflicts. She highlights that teachers have to possess great empathy to be able to understand children because those have trouble expressing themselves due to their young age. Thus, it is essential that teachers remember how they felt when they were young, so that they could comprehend children. However, in this respect a problem is bound to arise. One can easily become a victim of their own past experience. Teachers are often accused of not being able to embrace new ideas or theories if they contradict their own beliefs. This often leads to misunderstanding culturally encoded messages, especially if teachers and students come from different backgrounds. All in all, lack of empathy and understanding might force students to show their creativity and diligence outside the class and consider school to be something alien to them, which means a failure from schools’ standpoint.
In the second part of the article, the attention is drawn to class, culture and language related issues that are likely to arise in the school environment. Ms. Bowman explains that if schools represent an Anglocentric and middle-class viewpoint, it may be immensely difficult for poor and minority children to get accepted. School often decreases their self-esteem and self-confidence. In this case, children are bound to identify with their family and friends and reject school-proposed...
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