Friday, October 2, 2009

Multi-cultural Learning with the WWW

Multi-cultural Learning with the World Wide Web.
Multicultural education is of value to teaching and learning as it addresses multiple perspectives, learning styles and equity in classrooms, teaching and learning.
Technology is a of value in education as a tool to leaqnr new subject matter in various ways but also to develop technological skills needed for the workforce. Christine Sleeter, professor and author of many multi-cultural education texts, cites Wood (2002), in her article, Technology as a tool in multi-cultural teaching (2002) "The fact remains:
In order to compete in the workforce, all
cient (85%) of all jobs will require at least
some technical skills." and Sleter and Tettegah state " They will also require multicultural knowledge to apply those skills in their work environment in our rapidly changing demography."

Technology and multicultural teaching can be integrated to engage students in meaningful ways.
Web-based technologies are not the single answer to address all multicultural education learning, however greatly support various types of learning and knowing which supports multi-cultural education.
Christine Sleeter examines how multi-cultural education could potentially change or rather is changing by the introduction of web-based technologies into classrooms and other learning/ teaching venues, in her article, Technology as a tool in multi-cultural teaching (2002). Sleeter and colleague Tettegah, offer examples of how teachers increasing their technological skills began using technology to teach in a variety of creative ways. One point I found particularly valuable was using technology as a tool in multi-cultural teaching with Hawaiians who traditionally use oral stories and dance to pass down knowledge from one generation to the next, and that the technological options matched the learning and teaching styles of the Hawaiian people. I believe this observation to valid and useful for many cultures using oral narratives and dance, such as American Indians and other cultures. Sleeter and Tettegah state that “Web-based resources and online education has the potential to serve students not traditionally associated with schools and colleges in a manner unlike traditional education, as well as on ground classrooms.” The example of serving the Hawaiian culture illustrates this point well. I agree that using web-based resources has great potential to reach a great many people who may not normally have such educational opportunities and reach people in way more meaningful to them.

1 comment:

  1. There is a definite need for the increased use of technology in the classroom, but they type of instruction that we need requires professional development. It is difficult to accomplish when schools are focused primarily on standardized test scores, and repeatedly we are put through trainings to increase API and AYP. Maybe I should pass on Sleeter and Gorski's writings to our administrators!