A. Benet, A. Sanahuja, L. Moliner

Universitat Jaume I (SPAIN)
The classroom is a place which enables the exchange of experiences and cultures, participation, self-knowledge, autonomy, communication and socialization, an open space which has room for the diversity of the students. Teaching for Diversity can’t be developed from homogenizing classroom dynamics as they are far from reality and they deteriorate the interrelationship among students and teachers, excluding everyone who doesn’t adjust to the established rules. In this article we show an experience based on “rincones”. This classroom organization is a proposal that, from the constructivist theories of Piaget, Vygotsky and Ausubel perfectly answer the organizational and academic needs of Teaching for Diversity. This practice in a primary classroom is analyzed from the teachers’ perspective as a research-action process for its improvement. Results show how, by means of a content analysis of the interview and the observation carried out by the researchers, a series of key elements which facilitate students’ empowering. Teachers try to encourage autonomy as the students are the ones who decide how to manage their time to attend each of the “rincones”, apart from deciding what they want to learn. On the other hand, an individualized learning is empowered, respecting each students learning speed to reach the planned objectives. Besides, the teacher uses different evaluation methods which goal is to assess the learning-teaching process and not so much the evaluation of a final product. Therefore, “rincones” assume the principles of inclusive classrooms under which every child belongs and can learn in an ordinary classroom as diversity is valued; diversity strengthens students and offers everyone greater learning opportunities.