Culturally Responsive Teaching

published by April Berthiaume

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Culturally Responsive Teaching
The what, why and how for Chippewa Middle School
Culturally responsive teaching recognizes the importance of including students' cultural references in all aspects of learning, enriching classroom experiences and keeping students engaged.
What is Culturally Responsive Teaching?
Nice Definition but what does that really mean...why should we use CRT?
The link between culture and classroom instruction is derived from evidence that cultural practices shape thinking processes, which serve as tools for learning within and outside of school.  Thus, culturally responsive education recognizes, respects, and uses students' identities and backgrounds as meaningful sources  for creating optimal learning environments. From Brown University, Culturally Responsive Teaching
Why use CRT continued...
Teachers should consider the cultural values embedded in the lesson which might not be understood or shared by students of other cultures, and whether these cultural references might be meaningless or confusing for them. Though the gaps in language skills and background of students from other cultures may be overwhelming at times, teachers should find ways to teach and reach those students by building upon what they CAN do. Bogger, P. (n.d.). What is Culturally Responsive Instruction? [Web log post].
How to do CRT in your classroom...
Communication of High Expectations: There are consistent messages, from both the teacher and the whole school, that students will succeed, based upon genuine respect for students and belief in student capability.  Think GROWTH MIDSET!
Active Teaching Methods: Instruction is designed to promote student engagement by requiring that students play an active role in crafting curriculum and developing learning activities.
Teacher as Facilitator: Within an active teaching environment, the teacher's role is one of guide, mediator, and knowledgeable consultant, as well as instructor.
Cultural Sensitivity: To maximize learning opportunities, teachers gain knowledge of the cultures represented in their classrooms and translate this knowledge into instructional practice.
Small Group Instruction and Academically Related Discourse: Instruction is organized around low−pressure, student−controlled learning groups that can assist in the development of academic language.
The Knowledge Loom - Culturally Responsive Teaching. (n.d.). Retrieved November 07, 2016, from
Ideas for putting CRT in action!
*Autobiographical writing assignments *Discussion of Current Events from several different points of view *Utilize EL students at tutors for students studying their home language *Use accessible vocabulary both spoken and written
*Hang pictures and artwork in your classroom that represents a wide variety of cultures *Choose to use activities and stories that represent a wide variety of cultures. *Respect the cultures and experiences of various different groups and use them as resources for teaching and learning.
+The validation that CRT provides to students is psychologically and intellectually freeing! +CRT empowers and transforms students by helping them develop the knowledge, skills and values needed to become social critics who can make reflective decisions and implement their decisions into effective social, political, economic and personal action!
Last Thoughts....