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CULTURALLY RESPONSIVE PEDAGOGY IN REMOTE LEARNING

M. Myers

Queen's University (CANADA)
New language as well as adaptations are generated through on-line teaching. The word “techquity” was suggested to refer to equity in on-line teaching but how can this be applied and yield the expected outcomes when one does not necessarily see the students and social justice education is also added to the mix.
As a follow-up to reader’s response pedagogy, new trends have developed around diversity and motivation with the valuing of different interpretations in society today.

After a review of the literature, on culturally responsive pedagogy and Ministry of Education guidelines, on responsive pedagogy in the “Capacity Building Series” the model was applied in an on-line course, with all the challenges it posed around motivation (Bruner, 1996), self-efficacy (Bandura, 1997), dimensions of multicultural education (Banks, 2012) and culturally responsive teaching (Gay, 2018; Gay & Kirkland, 2003; Ladson-Billings, 2014; Pirbhai-Illich, Peter & Martin, 2018). The idea was for the students to build relationships and self-esteem while at the same time learning about teaching.

The methodology used in this research is case study (Yin, 2013). The courses involved are part of a French teacher preparation program in a Faculty of Education. This development on culturally responsive teaching is all the more important as the new Curriculum guidelines (Ministry of Education, 2014) require the inclusion of Francophone cultures throughout the world in teaching school children with a stress on intercultural understanding and conventions. Procedures were implemented around first, raising awareness of cultural identities through theoretical and practical applications and second, by having student groups set-up stations or activity centers to involve all their peers. For awareness-raising students were initially paired to get to know another person, which was followed by introducing that person to the class. The next step consisted of grouping people of similar background in order for them to share common elements and look at differences; this involved a number of activities in an action-oriented perspective (listing 10 perceptions of important cultural aspects; filling out individual observations on a culture graph). Then, students were tasked to set-up activity stations around a number of different topics with the objective of resulting into a product.

An analysis of the observations of the on-line teaching and of resulting products in three on-line courses was carried out.

Results about stories of the cultural lists of impressions and the graphs could be reported as according to Bruner (1996, 132) as style and content give form to one another, “ just as though [they become] inextricable from the language that eventually express [them] and eventually shape [them]”. As regards the various activity stations, within the diverse groupings, it appeared that doors were open to new experiences and surprising possibilities as for instance, in one case, instructions were given on how to cut out a snow flake, and then write-up the story of the snow flake within the diverse personal cultural contexts. In this case it was observed that the abstract was made more concrete and then followed by creativity.