second- and third-grade students at reach academy in oakland, california, are huddled quietly together on a rug to hear their teacher, natalya gibbs, read princess grace. grace, the central character, wistfully hopes she’s chosen to be a princess in her town’s annual parade, but with the help of her friends and her nana, she realizes that not all princesses have to wear a crown and frilly dress or “have a daddy of [their] own.” after hearing the stories of princesses from all over the world—warriors, artists, and scientists—grace decides she wants to be a gambian princess and goes to the parade sporting traditional kente robes. “i wanted to see myself reflected in stories because i started to become more aware of my own identity—i am mixed [race] and where do i fit in?” she says.
in her class of 22, gibbs tries to ensure that her classroom library provides a mirror for her students—a world in which they can see characters and themes that reflect their identities and experiences, such as skin color or hair style, family and home life structures, spoken languages, or abilities. bishop held that “when children cannot find themselves reflected in the books they read…they learn a powerful lesson about how they are devalued in the society of which they are a part.” but she also emphasized that diverse literature is equally valuable in more homogeneous schools where certain demographic groups dominate: “books may be one of the few places where children who are socially isolated and insulated from the larger world may meet people unlike themselves,” said bishop. the teaching tolerance website, for example, features a lesson plan for teachers that helps students identify windows and mirrors in their own reading. she emphasizes that materials also matter, and makes a point of including posters, wall hangings, and even skin-toned crayons so that children “can see themselves in all aspects of their classroom.” “it’s about ‘who is this class?
all aps elementary, middle, and k-8 schools received culturally responsive classroom libraries in fall of 2019. in order to help children feel welcomed and engaged in school, we must show our students that we see and value all aspects of them, including their language and culture. these culturally responsive texts are a start to an initiative that we will continue to expand yearly.
in 2017, lce and lsim began collaborating on the multicultural library, a resource for teachers, librarians, and other aps employees to check out high-quality, engaging, and culturally responsive books. we’re hoping these books are a start, and that teachers, parents, principals, and members of the community will continue to share thoughts and feedback with us to help inform any future purchases.
what is culturally and linguistically responsive teaching? it involves leveraging students’ cultural and linguistic experiences, utilizing their culturally responsive classroom libraries. all aps elementary, middle, and k-8 schools received culturally responsive classroom libraries in fall of 2019. rethink your definition of diversity. the best definition of a culturally responsive classroom library i’ve seen so far comes from the 2018 ila expert panel “, culturally diverse classroom library, culturally diverse classroom library, books for a diverse classroom library, culturally responsive library, best books for elementary classroom library.
programs, books & libraries. classroom libraries english learners collections paperbacks independent reading teaching collections let’s note that having a multicultural classroom library does not in and of itself produce a fully supportive learning environment for students. when you create a culturally diverse classroom library, you provide students with the opportunity for these kinds of experiences., culturally responsive teaching, classroom library questionnaire, importance of diverse books in the classroom, importance of classroom library, effective classroom libraries, assessing and selecting culturally diverse literature for the classroom, how to incorporate multicultural literature in the classroom, importance of diversity in libraries, scholastic, what are the characteristics of the literature you will include in your classroom collection. what is a culturally responsive library? how do you create a culturally responsive classroom library? why is having a diverse classroom library important? how do you diversify a classroom library?
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