By Teachers’ Team at Learn to Change
At a glance
Culturally Responsive Teaching is a pedagogy that recognizes the importance of including students’ cultural references in all aspects of learning.
Gloria Ladson-Billings, pedagogical theorist and teacher trainer, introduced the concept of culturally responsive teaching.
She saw it as a way to maximize students’ academic achievement by integrating their cultural references in the classroom. Since then, a deep field of research has developed around CRT.
Positive Perspectives on parents and families
Learning within the context of culture
Culturally mediated instruction
Reshaping the curriculum
More teachers are using CRT to best teach diverse student populations.
They’re also finding it’s a powerful way to reach all students. Here’s why:
1. It raises expectations for all students.
With this approach, teachers focus on identify students’ assets and use them to create rigorous, student-centered instruction.
2. It helps schools better meet students’ needs.
Underserved students may face implicit bias because of their race, culture, or language. As a result, these students are often overrepresented in special education. Other times, their needs go undetected. They’re also often underrepresented in gifted education. By using an assets mindset, schools are more likely to better identify and serve all students.
3. It builds cultural competence.
An inclusive curriculum helps teachers and students understand different perspectives, appreciate others’ strengths, and build empathy.
4. It helps students feel valued and empowered.
When students see themselves represented in the curriculum, they feel like they belong.
In a culturally responsive classroom, learners’ varied identities and experiences are identified, honored, and used to bridge rigorous new learning. This type of individualized instruction benefits all students.
However, culturally responsive teaching focuses on students who do not receive a type of culturally relevant instruction.
At the same time, Ladson-Billings’ framework can be expanded to learners with varying and interesting identities (including based on social class, English proficiency, disability status, LGBTQ status) whose identities and experiences are likewise excluded from mainstream settings.
It is clear that these students can also benefit from “mirrors” that allow them to see themselves, their experiences, and their communities in school. For these and other students culturally responsive teaching also provides critical “windows” into the cultural heritage and experiences of others.
In an increasingly diverse society, all students benefit from learning to honor their own, and one another’s cultural heritage and lived realities.
In this article we answer some questions regarding the decision to transform Learn to Change from an association to a collective.
In this article, we talk about what we mean by Collective – the new form chosen by L2C – and how you can join it.
Learn to Change’s members held a General Assembly in fall 2022, in which the decision was taken to transform the association into a less formal, and more agile entity. Therefore, we will change status, going from an ‘organization’ to a less formal entity that we name “The collective”
If you feel you are committed to the vision and mission of the association, then your place is here.
We are sure that becoming a member will benefit you in many ways. Read the product description for more details or click sign up now.