This week in ECS 200, the class was asked to read the sixth chapter in our textbook, “Culture and Diversity”. Canadian classrooms are becoming more and more diverse, so this chapter will be very useful when I begin teaching.
One of the first things that caught my eye while reading through this chapter was the illustration of an iceberg. The text used an iceberg as a way to describe culture. When many people, including myself, think about culture they are thinking about the food, the language and the holidays which only account for one-third of the culture. Below the surface, like an iceberg, are all the unseen aspects of a culture, such as gender roles, facial expressions and communication. A person’s culture is more than what is visible.
While reading, I found myself realizing that when I was younger I felt a stereotype threat when I was in school. I was a high achiever and did not like to be “bad” at math or sciences. I never wanted to be the ‘airhead girl’ that could not answer basic math problems and I felt (and still feel) pressured to correctly answer math questions. I did not realize that stereotypes were fueling my anxiety that was associated with poor math marks on quizzes or tests. I only knew that I did not want to be like the airhead girls on television.
I have seen a few commercials motivating girls to participate in science and math classes and break out of the gender norm roles. These commercials are attempting to break the stereotype of girls that they have to work in more ‘feminine’ jobs. Without having the stereotype that all girls are bad at maths and sciences, hopefully young girls will feel less stereotype threats.
The text discussed some ways that schooling is not fitting the way that boys learn. It discussed that smaller class and men in the schools will benefit boys (Woolfolk, Winne & Perry, 2013, p. 212). In elementary school, I noticed that the boys responded better to male teachers and respected them more. In the school that I am in for my ECS 100 placement, there are more female teachers. I am wondering what the schools are doing in Regina to have more male elementary teachers?
The final thing that really stood out to me that I learnt and will take into my future classroom is how to teach a diverse classroom; know, respect and teach my students. Respect is very important and I hope that I will not unintentionally offend parents or students during my career.
Thanks for reading my post!
Woolfolk, A. & Winne, P. & Perry, N. (2013). In O’Donnell C. (Ed.), Educational psychology (Sixth ed.). Upper Saddle River, New Jersey, USA: Pearson Education Inc.