Whenever two or more people come together with a
shared purpose, they form a culture with its own
written and unwritten rules of behavior.
Changes in culture that are initiated by a group
need cultural support of the members of the group, or
else they will not last long.
What is Multiculturalism?
According to HARRISON (1984),
MULTICULTURALISM is a theory about the
foundations of a culture rather than a practice which
subsumes cultural ideas.
MULTICULTURALISM is a systematic and
comprehensive response to cultural and ethnic
diversity, with educational, linguistic, economic, and
social components and specific institutions
3 INTERRELATED REFERENTS OF
DEMOGRAPHIC-DESCRIPTIVE – usage occurs when the
word multicultural refers to the existence of linguistically,
culturally, and ethnically diverse segments in the
population of a society or state.
IDEOLOGICALLY-NORMATIVE – usage of
multiculturalism generates the greatest level of debate
since it constitutes a slogan and basis for political action.
PROGRAMMATIC-POLITICAL – usage of
multiculturalism refers to the specific policies developed to
respond and manage ethnic diversity.
What is Multicultural Education?
BANKS AND BANKS (1995) – define multicultural
education as a field of study and an emerging
discipline whose major aim is to create equal
educational opportunities from diverse racial, ethnic,
social class, and culture.
JAMES BANKS (2001) – the primary goal of
multicultural education is to transform the school so
that male and female students, exceptional students,
and students from diverse cultural, social-class, racial
and ethnic groups experience an equal opportunity to
4 APPROACHES IN ACCOMPLISHING MULTICULTURAL
CONTRIBUTIONS APPROACH – The ethnic heroes and holidays are
included in the curriculum.
ADDITIVE APPROACH – A unit or course is incorporated (for example, a
unit on women in history), but no substantial change is made to the
curriculum as a whole.
TRANSFORMATION APPROACH – The entire Eurocentric nature of the
curriculum is changed. Students are taught to view events and issues from
diverse ethnic and cultural perspectives.
SOCIAL ACTION APPROACH – It goes beyond the transformation
approach. Students not only view issues from multiple perspectives but also
become directly involved in solving related problems. Rather than political
passivity, the typical by-product of many curricular programs, this approach
promotes decision-making and social action in order to achieve multicultural
goals and a more vibrant democracy.
MULTICULTURAL EDUCATION is a
progressive approach for transforming
education that holistically critiques and
addresses current shortcomings, failings and
discriminatory practices in education. It is
grounded in the ideals of social justice,
educations equity and a dedication to
facilitating educational experiences in which
all students reach their full potential as
learners and as a socially aware and active
beings, locally, nationally, and globally.
SCOPES OF MULTICULTURAL EDUCATION
Every student must have an equal opportunity to achieve her or his full
Every student must be prepared to completely participate in an
increasingly intercultural society.
Teachers must be prepared to effectively facilitate learning for every
individual student, no matter how culturally similar or different from
Schools must be active participants in ending oppression of all types,
first by ending oppression within their own walls, then by producing
socially and critically active and aware students.
Education must become more fully student-centered and inclusive of
the voices and experiences of the students.
Educators, activists and others must take a more active role in
reexamining all educational practices and how they affect the learning of
all students: testing methods, teaching approaches, evaluation and
assessment, school psychology and counseling.
DIMENSIONS OF MULTICULTURAL
There are 5 dimensions of multicultural education according
to Banks (1997).
•CONTENT INTEGRATION – it deals with the extent to which
teachers use examples and content from a variety of cultures and
groups to illustrate key concepts, generalizations, and issues within
their subject area or disciplines.
•KNOWLEDGE CONSTRUCTION PROCESS – it describes
how teachers help students to understand, investigate, and
determine how the biases, frames of reference, and perspectives
within a discipline influence the ways in which knowledge is
constructed within it. Students also learn how to build knowledge
themselves in this dimension.
•PERJUDICE REDUCTION – it describes lessons and
activities used by teachers to help students to develop positive
attitudes toward different racial, ethnic, and cultural groups.
•EQUITY PEDAGOGY – it exists when teachers modify
their teaching in ways that will facilitate the academic
achievement of students from diverse racial, cultural, and
social class groups.
•EMPOWERING SCHOOL CULTURE AND SOCIAL
STRUCTURE – this dimension is created when the culture
and organization of the school are transformed in ways that
enable students from diverse racial, ethnic, and gender groups
to experience equality and equal status.
THE GROWTH OF STUDENT
Sociologists define subculture as cultural
patterns that set apart some segment of a
society’s population. Subcultures can be
based on age, ethnicity, residence, sexual
preference, occupation, and many factors.
Sometimes , the special cultural traits of
a particular group are too numerous and too
interwoven to be called specialties.
FUNCTIONS OF SUBCULTURES
Subcultures perform specific functions such as:
PERMITTING SPECIALIZED ACTIVITY - because subcultures
(particularly occupational subcultures) carry the knowledge
necessary to perform specialized tasks, they are essential to the
division of labor which is essential in any society which is
becoming larger and more complex.
IDENTITY IN MASS SOCIETY – subcultures also provide a
source of identity in mass society, thus preventing feelings of
isolation and anomie.
CULTURAL ADAPTATION AND CHANGE – another important
function of subcultures is to serve as a source of adaptation to
society. Often a subculture is the mechanism through which
cultural diffusion occurs.
WHAT IS A CULTURALLY-RESPONSIVE
Culturally Responsive Instruction covers areas related to:
Inclusive content in the curriculum that reflects the
diversity of society.
Students’ prior knowledge, including their culture and
The idea that culture is central to student learning
because there is strong evidence that cultural practices
Culturally Responsive Teaching encompasses elements
•Communication of high expectations
•Active teaching methods that promote student engagement
•Teacher as facilitator
•Positive perspectives on parents and families of culturally and
linguistically diverse students.
•Reshaping the curriculum so that it is culturally responsive to
the background of students.
•Culturally mediated instruction that is characterized by the
use of culturally mediated cognition, culturally appropriate
social situations for learning, and culturally valued knowledge
in curriculum content.
•Small group instruction and academically-related discourse.
Culturally responsive teaching acknowledges cultural diversity
in classrooms and accommodates this diversity in instruction.
It does this in 3 important ways.
1. By recognizing and accepting student diversity, it
communicates that all students are welcome and
valued as human beings.
2. By building on students’ cultural backgrounds,
culturally responsive teaching communicates positive
images about the students’ home cultures.
3. By being responsive to different student learning
styles, culturally responsive teaching builds on
students’ strengths and uses these to help students
Effective teachers accept and value their students as human
beings. This is true for all students, but it is particularly
important for cultural and ethnic minorities who may feel some
form of alienation from school. This is amplified when teachers
communicate that all students can learn and are expected to do
There are cultural changes that influence the behavior and
ways of life of people in the different countries throughout the
world such as; MULTICULTURALISM and STUDENT
Teachers are in the best position to understand and recognize
that students have diverse cultural backgrounds and can adapt
their instruction to meet these diverse learning needs.
Hazel A. Tapaoan
Occidental Mindoro State College
Sablayan, Occidental Mindoro