Topics in Early Childhood Education

Monday, January 30, 2012

Diversity Begins with Us

In my Introduction to Teaching course, we were talking about diversity. The term 'diversity' has a much fuller and expanded meaning than it did when I started teaching 33 years ago. We thought the diversity in educational settings was the exception in our area of the country. Now we know it is always the rule. It should have been the rule 33 years ago, but it took a while for many people to incorporate it into their thinking. Some are still working at it.
One of the things about diversity in an educational setting is how we look at ourselves. Do our actions show what we think we believe about acceptance? I worked with a teacher once who would bragged about how accepting she was of every child. It was confusing to me to watch her exhibit a very short temper to any non-white student she had in her class. The children of color in her room were the ones always in time-out and being punished in some way. She also had very low expectations for these children. The sad issue is that I think she truly believed she was accepting of diversity and differences. Her actions did not mirror what she thought she believed.
Diversity includes:
* culture
* language
* gender
* ability differences
* exceptionalities
I'm glad we have realized that accepting others includes more than just ethnicity or culture. As educators, we need to continually look within and make sure that our actions reflect the belief that ALL children are welcome at the table and are equally special.



At 6:49 AM, Anonymous Malisa Rader said...

Thanks for the great post! We in early childhood do need to diversify our definition of diversity. :) I would add one more to your list - socio-economic status. What a fabulous opportunity we have in early childhood to bring kids together from a variety of backgrounds and cultures while we dream about the future possibilities of our ever shrinking world!

At 5:30 PM, Anonymous scfinder said...

I agree on what you are pointing to. It is really the definition of diversity, great post.

At 2:04 AM, Anonymous Make Me Genius said...

Very well written post. Could get lot of cues, children need more exposure- to different culture, different way of looking at same things.....unless & untill we fail to provide the same, we would be producing photocopies or mirror images of ours, originality would be lost.Thanks for bringing up an important aspect of child development.

At 8:43 PM, Anonymous scfinder said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 7:26 AM, Blogger Jamie said...

A great post, Canada is going to be a diversified society.Myriads of culture, religion and languages come together and form a society. Educational acceptance of diversity is a great boon for Canadian education and tutoring such as tutoring in brampton and technical training.

At 10:58 PM, Anonymous My First Skool said...

I truly enjoy your blog and fond of the way you think. It's no alien matter to us anymore that diversity what cause so many bullying to happen in school. If children understands diversity, accept, signify harmorny within the group, if taught from the early stage probably bullying cases might even reduce.

At 9:18 AM, Blogger Janet said...

In today's classroom there is so much diversity that teachers must accept everyone as an individual and set out what their main goal was when they wanted to teach. I have known some parents that have commented on teacher playing favorites to children because of their race and other child who were children that would be put on hold. As teachers we must accept what our goals are that include accepting all children for who they are no matter what race , ethnic, religion sex or special needs that a child portrays and teach with the dedication , compassion that we are committed to.

At 10:34 PM, Anonymous Tanveer said...

Its such a unique way to understanding about education. This kind of blogs should be so the reader might get benefits. I have written a blog on Child Education, which is very interesting. Hope you will like it too :).

At 8:47 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

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