Teachers’ Practical Knowledge about Classroom Management in Multicultural Classrooms

Apr. 01, 2009

Source: Teaching and Teacher Education, Volume 25, Issue 3, April 2009, Pages 453-460

Creating a positive working atmosphere in the classroom is the first concern of many student and beginning teachers in secondary education. Teaching in multicultural classrooms provides additional challenges for these teachers. This study identified shared practical knowledge about classroom management strategies of teachers who were successful in creating a positive working atmosphere in their multicultural classrooms. The 12 selected teachers were regarded as successful classroom managers in Dutch multicultural classes by their principals and students. Video-stimulated interviews were used to elicit data about the practical knowledge of these teachers. The teachers were aware of the importance of providing clear rules and correcting student behavior whenever necessary. However, they also wanted to reduce potential negative influences of corrections on the classroom atmosphere. They aimed at developing positive teacher–student relationships and adjusted their teaching methods anticipating students' responses. Most teachers seemed reluctant to refer to the cultural and ethnic background of their students.

Updated: Apr. 01, 2009