Chapter one. You are just beginning your first teaching position stud in a nearby urban area. Like many new teachers in an not urban area, you were offered the job only a few weeks jus before school started. You had never been to that part the of the city but were sure you could make a difference in tal the lives of students there. You quickly learn that many ab students have single parents, many of whom work two we jobs to make ends meet. Almost all of the students are he eligible for free lunch. The families of some students do not speak English at home, but the principal says the stu- dents speak English. You are disappointed in the condi- tion of the school, and your classroom in particular, but have been assured it will be repainted during one of the vacation periods. When students arrive on the first day, you are not sur- prised that a large proportion of them are from families who emigrated from Central America during the past two decades. The population includes some African American students and a few European American students. You did n an not realize that the class would include a student who had eeks just moved from Bulgaria and spoke no English and that part the native language of two students was Farsi. You have ce in taken a few Spanish courses but know little or nothing any about the languages or cultures of Bulgaria and Iran. You two wonder about the boy with the black eye but guess that are he has been in a fight recently. Questions
1. what assumptions about these students and their academic potential did you make as you read this the brief description?
2. What kinds of challenges are you likely to confront during the year?
3. What do you wish you had learned in college to help wo you be a better teacher in this school? Chapter Two
Denise Williams had become increasingly aware of the racial tension in the high school in which she teaches, but he did not expect the hostility that erupted between some black and white students that Friday. In the week that fol- lowed, the faculty decided they had to do more to develop positive interethnic and interracial relations among stu dents. They established a committee to identify consul tants and other resources to guide them in this effort. Ms. Williams, however, thought that neither she nor her students could wait for months to receive a report and recommendations from the committee. She was ready to introduce the civil rights movement in her social studies class. It seemed a perfect time to promote better cross- cultural communications. She decided that she would let students talk about their feelings She soon learned that this topic was not an easy one to handle. African American students expressed their anger at the discriminatory practices in the school and the com munity. Most of the white students did not believe that there was any discrimination. They believed there were no valid reasons for the anger of the African American and Latino students, and that if they just followed the rules and worked harder, they would not have their perceived problems. She thought the class was getting nowhere. In fact, at times the anger on both sides was so intense that she worried a physical fight would erupt. She was frus- trated because the class discussions and activities were not helping students understand their stereotypes and prejudices. She was concerned that students were becom ing more polarized in their beliefs. She wondered whether she could do anything in her class to improve understand- ing, empathy, and communications across groups. Questions
1. What racial groups are most likely to see themselves represented in the school curriculum?
2. How can a classroom reflect the diversity of its stu dents so that they all feel valued and respected?
3. What were the positive and negative outcomes of the steps taken by Ms. Williams?
Answer each question in at least 100 words