What you learn in school, stays with you forever. Schools and other educational institutes are not only responsible for academic learning, but moral learning as well. So many schools focus strictly on a student’s academic growth that they end up overlooking other areas that require teacher’s attention. Racism has become a major issue recently on a bigger level. It is important to understand that such significant problems are rooted in small misconceptions and biases towards people of color. For a futuristic society where people are judged based on their virtue and not color, it is important to eliminate racism from the very root.
It is the ultimate responsibility of teachers to do their best to promote diversity in their classrooms. Creating an environment where all students are comfortable studying and participating should be the utmost priority of every teacher. Here’s what teachers can do to form a wholesome inclusive classroom for all students.
1- Re-evaluate your Teaching Material
Take some time out of the busy schedule and examine the course material of your class. You will be surprised to find out that most of the stories, text, and material revolves around the people of a certain country, color, or race. Students should be able to learn about different heroes, countries, and cultures. It is important to have a diverse course material that highlights struggles, information, and general knowledge of various cultures. This is extremely important if you are teaching a miscellaneous classroom where students belong from varied backgrounds.
2-Make Students Comfortable
Class participation plays a key role in student performance. Many times teachers are so focused on good grades that they don’t pay attention to class engagement. Engagement from the same frontbenchers is enough for these teachers, which is wrong. Teachers should pay attention to those students who are not participating and engaging in-class activities. This lack of participation is usually because students are scared or ashamed of raising their hands when asked a question. These students are scared because they feel left out, different, or are scared of being a laughing material. It is the responsibility of teachers to create such a classroom environment where students from all backgrounds are comfortable. This will create a wholesome environment where students can learn from each other.
3- Address Inequality
A teacher should be confident and comfortable enough to address uncomfortable topics such as inequality and racism. Staying quiet is not going to make things better for class minorities. Teachers should be able to address such topics in an informative way. Usually, students are highly uninformed about such sensitive topics which results in an intolerable racist society.
Shutting down racist comments, names, and discrimination within your class with no hesitation is also important and part of addressing inequality. Be vocal about such issues so that students can follow suit and do the same at their own homes and outside school.
4- Learn Different Languages
There’s no doubt that English is a language that is understood by many, after all, it is the world’s second-largest and most spoken language. Although, teaching is a profession in which learning never stops. Ensuring that your students are comfortable and at ease in the classroom is extremely important. To do that, teachers may want to learn a few languages. Communicating with students in their mother tongues will boost their confidence and they will find it easier to communicate and bond with you. Not only that, but it will also encourage other students to be more tolerant, warm-hearted, and open-minded towards new students who belong from varied backgrounds.
6- Join Diverse Communities
If you are a teacher who has some extra time on hands and wants to create an ideal classroom for all, then you may want to join a community of diverse people. No matter how much you want to form a wholesome inclusive class, there are a few things you can only learn when you spend time with people who belong to a different culture. Joining a diverse community, internship program, or volunteering program will help you be informed about different cultures, their norms, and language. This practice will help you know and understand your diverse students in a better way and on a deeper level.
There are many other ways to achieve a pleasant and inclusive classroom environment. Everyone has their own way to promote diversity. Evaluate your classroom and form your own approach to form a pleasant and patient environment in your classroom.