Inclusive Pedagogy – A Need of Modern Times

by Ella Wilson
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Famous stand-up comedian Dave Chappelle once said, “Modern problems require modern solution”. This rather simple catchword took the internet by storm. Although the golden words of Chappelle were taken as a light joke by the teens, they are quite meaningful. The modern problems that come along with the changing nature of the educational world are alarming.

The educational world has transformed a lot over the past few years due to several social, economic, and technical factors, resulting in its renewed and modern version. The modernized version of the educational sector has had a huge impact on learning and even on student enrollment and dropout rates. A recent report by IAO showed that more students are dropping out without completing their education. Experts believe that outdated methods of teaching and management in schools might to be blamed for the staggering dropout rates.

One of the major changes that have been observed in class is demographics. Classrooms have become more diverse due to globalization. It has become easier for people to travel abroad and study in their desired educational institutes. Although, the quality of education in these institutes is rather disconcerting for those who belong from different cultures. The management and teachers are not well equipped to accommodate diverse students. Not only that, but teachers find it hard to deal with students from skill levels, talents, and interests as well which results in dropouts.

Inclusive pedagogy is a student-centered approach that is really an on-going process.  It aims for the increased participation of all the students in a class. It fosters an open-ended view that every child should have an equal place in the classroom. The approach of inclusive pedagogy opposes marginalization in the classroom, whether it is regarding the culture or abilities of students.

How Inclusive Education can be achieved

Inclusive education can only be achieved when traditional pedagogical approaches are altered to suit modern needs. Teachers have a significant impact on student learning inside, as well as outside the class. To reject marginalization, teachers must take the initial step to modify their approaches to meet the needs of diverse students.

  • Understanding Achievement Gap

Many teachers fail to understand that inclusive pedagogy is not only about race, color, and culture. It is a wide concept that is about making education accessible and understandable for all. If a teacher is successful in educating only the bright students, while the other students struggle, the teacher is not practicing inclusive pedagogy at all.

A bright student will score whether the teacher’s instructions are easily comprehensible or not. This forms a uniformity in classroom where attention of teacher is centered on a particular group. To ensure that a classroom is inclusive of all, teachers should evenly pay attention to all pupils and try to enhance overall learning. In a diverse classroom, achievement gap is an evident thing. Every student learns differently and has a different set of abilities. To apply such strategies that enhance the distinct qualities of every student becomes the responsibility of teachers.

  • Opt for Universal teaching Designs

If you are a teacher who is teaching a class full of students that belong to different countries, you may find it challenging to deal with them. The cultural differences between teachers and students have a profound impact on overall bonding. Teachers in such classes may want to ditch their traditional methods and choose pedagogical approaches that are designed for international students. They may want to opt for universal teaching designs so that their instructions are easy to understand for all the students.

Universal design will suit the needs of students that travel from all over the world for the purpose of learning, which would directly have a positive impact on the overall learning of class.

  • A Diverse Course Material

To teach a miscellaneous class, refrain from choosing authors that belong to one particular country. There are many talented authors from different countries that the teacher can introduce in their classrooms. To engage diverse students in classrooms, opt for diverse authors and literature so that students feel involved and comfortable. This is one of the best strategies to gain trust and interest of students. You can also ask the students to do their own reading and share it with the classroom so that an engaging environment can be formed in the class.

  • Use Appropriate Language

Modern education and Edtech have been associated with English language which has made it challenging for many students and even traditional teachers to progress in their fields. If you are teaching a class of diverse students, you may want to be mindful of the language you use. Take their concerns into notice and try to familiarize them with the language you speak in your class. A teacher in a diverse classroom should also learn a few languages to make students feel welcomed and warm. Many teachers find it hard to engage with students who speak a different language. These teachers end up getting annoyed or not paying the same attention to those students. Under such a situation, teachers may want to be extra patient and take measures to shut down the language barrier.

  • Personalized Feedback

To reduce the achievement gap and pay enough attention to struggling students, teachers are recommended to introduce personalized feedback in class. This would allow the teachers to engage personally with every student, understand their weak areas, and take steps to help them do better in class.

The changing culture of classrooms is certainly a modern problem that arises from globalization. Teachers have been trying hard to reduce these problems by using the same old traditional tactics. However, these modern problems require the utmost attention of modern teachers and their expertise.

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