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Culturally-Responsive Classroom Management Strategies Video

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  • 0:03 Definition of…
  • 0:54 Getting to Know Students
  • 2:34 Creating a Culture of Learning
  • 3:46 Communicating in…
  • 5:16 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Sharon Linde
A student's culture can play a large part in how they learn. When it comes to classroom management, knowing how to respond to and incorporate students' cultures can enhance student learning. Read on to learn more about culturally-responsive classroom management strategies.

Definition of Classroom Management

Carla works in a school district with a culturally diverse population of students. In her classroom, several different cultures are represented, each with a unique approach to the way they learn. Carla is a seasoned teacher who understands that all students bring their own set of qualities to the classroom, and she's especially careful to consider these needs when planning.

Carla knows effective teachers have strong skills in classroom management, which are organizational strategies teachers employ to keep a class on track with goals and student behavior. Classroom management involves things like organizing the environment, setting clear expectations, and determining student learning. Classroom management also consists of the things Carla does to help her students succeed, like staying organized and getting along with peers. How does she create a culturally responsive classroom? Let's take a look.

Getting to Know Students

The first step Carla took towards creating a culturally responsive classroom, one that respects all students and families, their backgrounds and beliefs, was to learn her students' backgrounds and try to understand their culture. She did this by researching independently and having many conversations with parents and caregivers. The information she learned helped her see how different families approach education and discipline.

For example, Juan's family is very strict and doesn't want to allow him to 'goof off' in class; this explains why Juan is so quiet and reserved. Carla respects the families feelings about behavior and explains that she will maintain positive discipline in her classroom. She lets them know that Juan can be both focused and relaxed in a classroom environment without impacting grades or learning. Carla has learned many different cultural rules dictating behavior, social choices, etiquette, learning approaches, and communication and is sensitive to each.

At the beginning of the year, Carla does a few things to connect with parents and caregivers to help get to know them and their student. She visits the family in their homes, establishes an open line of communication, and asks how she can help be a partner in the child's academic success. She also has students and families complete a family questionnaire, answering questions concerning learning styles and cultural boundaries.

For example, she asks when and where students prefer to complete homework, and if there have been any educational issues in the past she should be aware of. Finally, she hosts a night where parents can share their cultural history with other families in the classroom, during which they share food, conversation, and information that helps Carla teach all students.

Creating a Culture of Learning

Carla takes the information she learns about her students and their cultures and uses it to create a plan for classroom management. Like all effective teachers, Carla considers her students' needs when designing her classroom space, keeping social and academic outcomes in mind. When creating her classroom, she thinks about how she can use the environment to reflect diversity. She wants to create a community of learners that includes and celebrates all students, making sure not to leave anyone out.

Some things Carla considers are:

  • Displays that reflect a diverse community - posters, banners, and other things to decorate the classroom to show different cultures
  • Materials that support her learners - tools such as maps and globes that show and celebrate student background
  • Diverse materials - classroom libraries and other materials that have content with a wide range of cultures
  • Wide curriculum arc - both the teaching content and teaching process take student cultures into account
  • Collaboration - having students work in group projects or smaller class work, promoting conversations and interaction among students. This allows them to get to know one another better and begin overcoming possible cultural stereotypes.

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