Most 21st century classrooms have transformed into places where Racially, Ethnically, and Linguistically Different (RELD) students come together (Merryfield, 2000) to develop citizenship and career skills. Furthermore, many of today’s learning environments take advantage of technologies that allow teachers to connect with cultures and resources outside traditional classroom, thus globalizing instruction. As such, it is essential for teachers to be culturally responsive and teach young people to demonstrate critical thought, reflective judgment, and creative imagination while simultaneously exhibiting cross-cultural competence. Culturally responsive teachers “use cultural knowledge, prior experiences, and learning styles of culturally different students to make learning more appropriate and effective” (Ford, 2010, p. 52).
Before the course begins, define what it means to be a culturally responsive teacher and explain what you need to do in order to create a culturally responsive classroom.