Building Cultural Responsiveness in Rural, Preservice Teachers Using a Multicultural Children's Literature Project

Apr. 26, 2009

Source: Journal of Early Childhood Teacher Education, Volume 30, Issue 2, pages 123 - 137 (April 2009).

The purpose of this study was to describe the qualities of preservice early childhood teacher response to a multicultural children's literature project. Furthermore, the study aimed to evaluate the project as a means for developing culturally responsive teaching practices in preservice early childhood teachers. Surveys and reflection papers on the project from two reading methods education courses were analyzed, utilizing Irvine's (2003) description of culturally responsive teachers.
Student written responses fell into six categories: awareness of teaching materials and culturally specific learning differences, an increase in their own personal cultural knowledge, and a commitment to foster cultural competence in children, build a classroom community and teach for social justice.
The responses indicated that the reading of multicultural children's books enabled the future early childhood teachers to identify more closely with people of a culture other than their own and to develop knowledge, empathy, and commitment to improving the well-being of their future students.

Updated: Jun. 11, 2009