Ece 405 children and families in a diverse society entire course

ECE 405 Children and Families in a Diverse Society Entire Course



Commonly Held Beliefs and Bias.

Review the questions, links and accompanying videos for the Commonly Held Beliefs that Influence Teachers’ Work with Diverse Students at Which of the 13 misconceptions stand out for you as being particularly important for you to recognize and avoid as an early childhood educator? How can we become more aware of our own hidden biases and cultural assumptions when it comes to educating children of different backgrounds? Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.


Children and Prejudice.

In Vivian Gussin Paley’s book, “You Can’t Say, You Can’t Play”, a hierarchy of “bosses” and “outcasts” emerges year after year in her classroom. What, in your experience with children, determines this hierarchy and how much of it is due to the development of pre-prejudicial behavior in children? Provide examples and then consider why it is important to address this behavior earlier rather than later. Would Vivian Gussin’s Paley’s rule have worked in the example you provide? Why or why not? Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.


Race: Illusion vs. Reality.

Review the seven “propositions” including the accompanying videos on “Understanding the Influence of Race” ( From these links and videos, you will learn that much of what we hold to be true about race is a social construction, which has little connection to human biology. Unfortunately this means children of different races may face stereotypes based on the way they look or speak. As an early childhood educator, you will be in a unique position to make an impact on children of all racial backgrounds. Refer to the information provided in the links as you consider the scenario below:

§ How would you address a child who seems to exhibit prejudice against children of other races?

Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.


Cultural Differences.

On page 64, your text offers a list of 13 childrearing patterns that differ between cultures. These can create challenges for educators when family structures and norms conflict with the assumed norms of the school. In the US, these are most often based on white, middle-class cultural assumptions. Provide an example from your own life or one in the media where these values have led to conflict or misunderstandings between the school and family. How might the educator or school have responded in a more culturally sensitive manner? Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.


Exposure to Stereotypes.

Children are bombarded by racial, cultural and gender stereotypes both within and outside the classroom. Consider the movies, television series and products (including toys and videogames), which are marketed to young children. Submit a 2-3 page paper (not including title and reference page) arguing why you believe the movie, television series or product chosen taints children’s understanding of race, culture, gender, and the message being conveyed. Include the following in your argument:

a. Critique one example from these categories, which you find to particularly problematic in perpetuating stereotypes.

b. Assess the potential impacts of these messages on children of diverse backgrounds in the early childhood classroom (think especially about the hierarchy described in Vivian Gussin Paley’s book? Are they, in any way to blame for who is seen to be among the “bosses” and the “rejected”?)

c. Describe how the problem of stereotypes extends to commercial teaching material.

d. Recommend strategies to counteract the stereotypes children are exposed to outside the classroom as an early childhood educator? (Hint: You may want to skim through the culturally relevant and unbiased activities in Chapter 9 for inspiration).

At a minimum, use one external source, in addition to the course text. Remember to cite all references using APA style.


Second Language Learners.

Imagine that you teach in a school where the majority of the student population is English speaking, and there is a growing a number of English language learners. You are assigned to a first-grade classroom where 60% of children speak English only and the other 40% speak mostly Spanish with varying levels of English. How will you approach and organize this classroom? What challenges do English language learners face? What challenges will you face? How will foster a positive, collaborative classroom community despite a language barrier? Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.


The Role of Families and Communities in Culturally Relevant Anti-Bias Education.

Often school attempts to connect with families fail. One reason is that schools assume the role of “educator” and expect families to go out of their way to learn how they can help modify family patterns to best suit the school environment. However, a more effective way to connect to families is for teachers to go out into the communities they serve and “learn” more about those communities. Based on this idea, describe two-to-three specific ways you can become more educated and knowledgeable of the families you will be serving locally and identify resources you might like to explore. Then, explain what you believe the role family and community should play in helping teachers deliver culturally relevant anti-bias curriculum. Is it that of learner, educator or both? Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.


The IRIS Center Module.

The IRIS Center is a national center that aims to provide high quality resources and training for educators. Go to Begin by selecting the Challenge balloon. Listen to the Case study. Then select the Initial Thoughts balloon. Focus on the question regarding the level of involvement of Maria’s parents. Continue on to the Perspectives and Resources balloon (focusing on Page 3) and finally go to the Assessment balloon. After completing the module, submit a 2-3 page paper (not including the title and reference page) which addresses the cultural differences that exist between Maria, Mr. Bennett and the school. Using at least one external resource to help you better understand Maria’s culture:

§ Analyze how Maria’s bilingualism is being addressed by the school and Mr. Bennett and any cultural or linguistic considerations which seem to have been largely ignored.

§ Suggest possible reasons for Maria’s behavior in the classroom, tardiness for school and Maria’s parents’ perceived lack of involvement in her education.

§ Assess what this scenario tells us about the concept of multicultural education and how race and gender come into play.

§ Recommend strategies which you, as her teacher, would use to better equip Maria for academic success.

At a minimum, use one external source, in addition to the course text. Remember to cite all references using APA style.


Classroom Environments and Learning.

Both your reading in Roots and Wings and the lessons from Vivian Gussin Paley’s book demonstrate that classroom environments give children and parents strong messages in the way they are set up and decorated. Identify and describe at least two ways you can structure and design the classroom environment to enhance anti-bias education and culturally relevant learning. Provide specific examples and respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.


Multicultural Literature.

There are many different kinds of multicultural children’s books. Choose one book from the titles presented in your text. Read the book and provide a brief summary of the story. Describe how the book fosters one of the curriculum goals listed on page 162 in your text. Be specific and give examples related to the text to support your thinking. Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.


PowerPoint Presentation.

You will create an 8-10 slide (not including the title and reference slide) presentation in Microsoft PowerPoint. The presentation should provide an overview of the arguments, ideas, facts, and information students will be applying to their final paper. The information should be presented in a visually compelling manner and discuss how the information provided can be applied to the design and development of multicultural, anti-bias curriculum as future early childhood educators. Please be aware that this presentation should not simply be cut and paste from the actual paper and should be tailored to share what you learned about the group you are studying. The presentation should:

a. Describe the background and history on the culture chosen.

b. Recommend how to best provide a multicultural and anti-bias curriculum for that background throughout the curriculum.

c. Explain the activities you have recommended to educate other children about this background in your Summative Assessment and your suggestions for providing a more culturally inclusive and sensitive environment.

d. Provide specific recommendations for ESL learners and give an application of any lessons which can be drawn from Vivian Gussin Paley’s book.

Font should generally be 24-point and in an easy to read style. Points should be written in clear, concise, and contain complete sentences. Please note that the presentation should not simply be cut and paste from your paper. Instead, it should be a visually interesting overview of the main ideas covered in the paper. Support claims and recommended activities and curriculum suggestions with facts and research throughout. Provide sources for any information, graphs, or pictures that are not your own. Graphics and sound can be effective, but strive to include only those which help you make your point without allowing them to become overly distracting. Submit your completed presentation to Waypoint.

At a minimum, use one external source, in addition to the course text. Remember to cite all references using APA style.


Evaluative Multiculturalism in the Classroom.

Teachers can be genuine in their efforts to deliver a culturally-relevant and anti-bias curriculum, but still fail to produce a classroom where children are fully inclusive of others and prejudice-free. What criteria will be most important to you as you evaluate your literature selections and activities in the classroom for multicultural and anti-bias? What behaviors will you be looking for in your students that indicate your program has been successful? How will your activities and application of multicultural methods help to teach children to be more inclusive? Discuss specific criteria and appropriate strategies and techniques that you will use in your own classroom. Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.


Focus of the Final Paper:

This paper should be a combination of philosophies, theories, and concepts learned and how they apply to the early childhood classroom. The primary focus will be on the comprehensiveness of understanding the many components that are necessary for the preschool classroom.

In a 4-6 page paper (not including the title and reference page) respond to the following situation:

You have just been hired to teach pre-school children at an international school. You will be teaching a diverse class of 3-5 year olds. Some will stem from white backgrounds, but more than half the class will come from diverse backgrounds which includes Middle Eastern, Asian, African, Hispanic, Native American, and European descent. Some families will be recent immigrants who do not yet speak English, while others will come from backgrounds who have been in the U.S. for generations.

The Director has asked teachers to become experts on one diverse background or “culture” which they know the least about. Choose one of these diverse backgrounds listed above, research the history and culture of that group, and in your paper:

1. Assess the usefulness of the term you’ve chosen, such as “Hispanic” or “Middle Eastern” as a category and how race or gender issues factor into the description and consider how this “group” might be misrepresented, misunderstood, or ignored in U.S. early childhood programs.

2. Propose ways that staff can engage with the children and their families and demonstrate an appreciation of their background while also respecting each student as a unique individual.

3. Design at least 2 activities, which will educate other children about students from this background and then tie this to lessons garnered from Vivian Gussin Paley’s book.

4. Identify 3 or more ways that this culture should be addressed throughout the standard curriculum including specific recommendations for ESL learners. Be sure to provide a list of at least 3 recommended resources, which you believe the school should utilize.

At a minimum, use two external sources, in addition to the course text. Remember to cite all references using APA style.

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