Saturday, May 3, 2008

“Culturally” (ir)Relevant Instruction

Our district (in trying to address the achievement gap) is currently discussing what culturally relevant instruction looks like. I'm not part of the cadre getting trained on these strategies, but from what I gather, it involves trying to embed concepts & activities that are culturally familiar to students from differing ethnic backgrounds.

We are totally missing the boat by not focusing on technology, which should be the great equalizer when looking at equity.

I don't know how many cultures are represented in our district. I do know that there is no way that we can address every culture that we have represented, though. What we can address is what is familiar to all of our students: technology & web-based tools.

If we really want to impact the achievement gap for all of our students, we should focus on things (like technology) that impact engagement for all learners, regardless of ethnic background. Until our leadership recognizes that, we will be implementing culturally irrelevant instruction.

For more ideas on this, see the "Did You Know" video from Carl Fisch's blog.