COURSE TITLE:

RACE, CULTURE & BIAS IN EDUCATION:  Culturally Proficient Teaching

NO. OF CREDITS:

3 QUARTER CREDITS
[semester equivalent = 2.00 credits]

WA CLOCK HRS:  
OREGON PDUs:
30
30

INSTRUCTOR:

Wendi Fein
wendifein1@gmail.com

 

COURSE DESCRIPTION:

Take a personal journey toward improving your cultural competence.  This class will enable you to better understand the concept of White Privilege and its impact on education.  You will also explore current issues of race and culture in American schools by selecting and reading a book from the bibliography.  Possibilities include books like How to Teach Students who Don’t Look Like You, Courageous Conversations About Race, and Every Day Anti-Racism

Coursework will offer teachers a better understanding of White Privilege, reveal common misconceptions about cultures, and explain ways for teachers to connect to students of diverse cultural backgrounds.  Classroom application will involve a personal examination of how race and culture are impacting your school and classroom environment.

 

 

LEARNING OUTCOMES: Upon completion of this course, participants will have:

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  1. Use terminology such as cultural competence, cultural proficiency, and culturally relevant teaching and be able to describe why these skills are necessary in today’s classrooms.
  2. Explain how students’ and teachers’ cultural backgrounds affect teaching and learning.
  3. Identify how students develop ideas about race and culture because of their family upbringing.
  4. Describe how White Privilege in America has shaped interactions between cultures and influenced our educational system.
  5. Detect possible cultural or racial bias within themselves and/or within their school/district organization.
  6. Design instructional strategies and learning environments where individual cultural differences are respected and valued.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS:
Completion of all specified assignments is required for issuance of hours or credit. The Heritage Institute does not award partial credit.


HOURS EARNED:
Completing the basic assignments (Section A. Information Acquisition) for this course automatically earns participant’s their choice of CEUs (Continuing Education Units), or Washington State Clock Hours or Oregon PDUs. The Heritage Institute offers CEUs and is an approved provider of Washington State Clock Hours and Oregon PDUs.




 

UNIVERSITY QUARTER CREDIT INFORMATION

REQUIREMENTS FOR UNIVERSITY QUARTER CREDIT
Continuing Education Quarter credits are awarded by Antioch University Seattle (AUS). AUS requires 75% or better for credit at the 400 level and 85% or better to issue credit at the 500 level. These criteria refer both to the amount and quality of work submitted.

  1. Completion of Information Acquisition assignments 30%
  2. Completion of Learning Application assignments 40%
  3. Completion of Integration Paper assignment 30%



 

CREDIT/NO CREDIT (No Letter Grades or Numeric Equivalents on Transcripts)
Antioch University Seattle (AUS) Continuing Education Quarter credit is offered on a Credit/No Credit basis; neither letter grades nor numeric equivalents are on a transcript. 400 level credit is equal to a "C" or better, 500 level credit is equal to a "B" or better. This information is on the back of the transcript.

AUS Continuing Education quarter credits may or may not be accepted into degree programs. Prior to registering determine with your district personnel, department head or state education office the acceptability of these credits for your purpose.

ADDITIONAL COURSE INFORMATION

REQUIRED TEXT

Choose one book from the bibliography to complete assignment #3.  Price will vary depending on choice of text.  Books are available from a public library, or new or used online at Amazon.com, etc.

None. All reading is online.

MATERIALS FEE

Choose one book from the bibliography to complete assignment #3. Text price will vary but will be under $20.00.

ASSIGNMENTS REQUIRED FOR HOURS OR UNIVERSITY QUARTER CREDIT

A. INFORMATION ACQUISITION

Assignments done in a course forum will show responses from all educators active in the course. Feel free to read and respond to others comments. 

Assignment #1: Introduction

As an introduction to the course, complete the following assignments and submit as one paper :

  • Read each statement on the"Teacher Voices" worksheet and complete the "First Thoughts" section after each statement. Try not to "over-think" the items, answering instead with your "gut response."
  • Next, read the entries for each statement on the Discussion Prompts. As you read each discussion prompt, reflect on your initial response in "First Thoughts," and write down additional thoughts, along with possible action steps that might help you better serve students.
  • Look over the website below and pick ONE article to reflect upon
  • https://www.multiculturaldimensions.org
  • Post your 2-3 paragraph reflection in the online response box.  Share what you learned from the Teacher Voices worksheet,discussion prompts and selected aricle.How does one’s understanding about race influence their thinking?  What understanding about race do we need to move forward in our efforts to embrace culturally relevant teaching?  What common beliefs do you hold which may challenge your thinking about CRT?
  • Read the excerpt from this link:http://www.jstor.org/stable/665280   about The Body Ritual Among the Nacirema by Horace Miner or google the title if the link doesn't work. .  You may skim over it to get a general idea of what the anthropologist is describing.  Then, spell “Nacirema” backwards.  Post a 1-2 paragraph response in the online response box. What culture is this author referring to?  Is this an accurate description?  How does this article show ways that bias and perspective influence how we view other cultures?  What do you feel the author’s main purpose was in writing the article?

Assignment #2: Examination of White Privilege

1) Google at least 4-5 articles or videos/Ted Talks of interest to you about White Privilege. You can also look at some of the suggestions below.

Write a 300-500 word reflection on how you came to understand your own culture. 

How and when were you introduced to the idea of different cultures? 

How were your perceptions of race shaped by your family and community experiences? 

In what ways have you either experienced or observed White Privilege in your own life, community or school? 

How do you think your upbringing and experiences have influenced your current level of cultural competence in the classroom? 

How did the viewing of these videos/articles affect you and your perceptions of white privilege?

Post your reflection paper in the online response box.

Here are some examples.

Borrego, Susan E.  “Understanding My Privilege.”  YouTube, TEDx Talks, 9 December 2016, www.youtube.com/watch?v=XlRxqC0Sze4.

Chalabi, Mona. “What Is White Culture, Exactly? Here's What the Stats Say.” The Guardian, Guardian News and Media, 26 February 2018, www.theguardian.com/world/2018/feb/26/white-culture-statistics-vegetables-alcohol.

Cheng, Eugenia. “An Unexpected Tool for Understanding Inequality.”

https://www.ted.com/talks/eugenia_cheng_an_unexpected_tool_for_understanding_inequality_abstract_math#t-667235

DiAngelo, Robin Dr.  “Deconstructing White Privilege.”  YouTube, General Commission on Religion andRace of The UMC, 21 February 2018, www.youtube.com/watch?v=DwIx3KQer54.

“Diversity Wheel”.  Johns Hopkins University, web.jhu.edu/dlc/resources/diversity_wheel/.

Kleinrock, Liz. “How to Teach Kids to Talk about Taboo Topics.”

https://www.ted.com/talks/liz_kleinrock_how_to_teach_kids_to_talk_about_taboo_topics

León, Felice.  “How White Privilege Works: Unpack That.”  YouTube, The Root, 15 August 2018,www.youtube.com/watch?v=4I84jxCNsmo.

Moses, Yolanda. “Is the Term People of Color Acceptable in This Day and Age?”

https://www.multiculturaldimensions.org/is-the-term-people-of-color-acceptable-in-this-day-and-age/

Pearson, Luke and Sophie Verass. “10 Things You Should Know about White Privilege.”

https://www.multiculturaldimensions.org/10-things-you-should-know-about-white-privilege/

Rothman, Joshua. “The Origins of ‘Privilege.’” The New Yorker, The New Yorker, 20 June 2017,www.newyorker.com/books/page-turner/the-origins-of-privilege.

Stevenson, Howard C. “How to Resolve Racially Stressful Situations.”

https://www.ted.com/talks/howard_c_stevenson_how_to_resolve_racially_stressful_situations

Vulchi, Priya and Winona Guo. “What It Takes to Be Racially Literate.”

https://www.ted.com/talks/priya_vulchi_and_winona_guo_what_it_takes_to_be_racially_literate#t-730037

Assignment #3: Writing A Critical Book Review

This assignment requires you to choose and read a book from the bibliography at the end of the syllabus.  Please complete a 2-4 page book review which includes the following:

  • An introduction with the author and title, including any background information about the author and the purpose for writing the book.What is the overall thesis?If reading a book with multiple authors and essays, draw out three themes that you will discuss in the next paragraphs.
  • 1-2 paragraphs:Provide a description of the main points covered in the book, including samples of quotes and stories that stood out to you.If you read a book with multiple essays, pull out three themes to discuss and include examples from various essays that match those themes.
  • 1-2 paragraphs:Critically examine the book.Is the author’s argument convincing?Are there any weak points or chapters that need reconsideration?If reading multiple essays, were there some articles that were excellent and others which were less convincing?
  • Overall evaluation: State 3 ways in which this book would be useful to teachers; 2 ways in which it would not be.  What were the major impacts this book had on you?
  • BIBLIOGRAPHY

     If there is a particular book that you would like to review that is not on this list, please contact me first.
  • Anderson, Carol  White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide                                                    Born out of a Washington Post op-ed, this book addresses the way that African American social progress has been stymied by white opposition throughout history, from the Jim Crow laws to the War on Drugs and even the response to Barack Obama's election. It offers a fresh perspective that history books didn't teach us. Davis, B. (2005) How To Teach Students Who Donʼt Look Like You: Culturally Relevant TeachingStrategies. Corwin Press.This book offers a common-sense approach to teaching diverse learners and includes various teachingstrategies to close the achievement gap.
  • Bandele, Asha and Khan-Collors, Patrisse  When They Call You a Terrorist                                                 This memoir from one of the founders of the Black Lives Matter movement is a poetic exploration of what it feels like to be a Black woman in America and how Patrisse Khan-Cullors turned her pain into political power. It's an empowering call-to-action that will make the reader want to stand up and do something.
  • Coates, Ta-Nehisi Between the World and Me                                                                                                      Ranging from the broad social issues of our time to an intimate conversation between a father and son, this powerful book reckons with our shared history in a way that will both touch and challenge readers. It's part memoir, part reported history, and totally essential.
  • Cooper, Brittney Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower                                            With searing wit and razor-sharp insight, Cooper's book on how Black women's rage can be a source of strength is a must-read. It points out that righteous anger lights the fire behind icons like Michelle Obama, Serena Williams, and Beyoncé, and that Black women can use that same fuel to drive them, too.
  • Diangelo, Robin White Fragility: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk about Racism Beacon Press
    White people, in particular, have a hard time talking about race. And there are many reasons for that. Break open the history and sociology behind that discomfort with this book that not only exposes what white fragility is and why it exists, but how to confront it and work toward change. 
  • Gordon, EdConversations in Black: On Power, Politics, and Leadership
    Journalist Ed Gordon gathered some of the most prominent voices in Black America for an honest, thought-provoking collection. With many names you'll recognize and more you should add to your list of to-reads, this book feels like eavesdropping on important conversations we all need to hear. 
  • Kendi, Ibram X  How to Be an Antiracist
    The title says it all. This book breaks down the author's own journey toward active anti-racism, while serving as a guide for people who want to go beyond not being racist, into working to create a more just society. It's essential reading for anyone asking, "What more can I do?" 
  • Ladson-Billings, G. (2009) The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African-American Children.Jossey-Bass, 2nd Ed.This inspirational book shares eight stories of successful teachers who have developed successful teaching strategies in their classrooms..
  • Laymon, Kiese Heavy: An American Memoir                                                                                                With a story that lives up to its name, this memoir explores the many complex forces at play in Laymon's life growing up as a Black man in Mississippi. Through it all, the author confronts multiple traumas with openness and love, in a book that won't leave your mind anytime soon.
  • Lee, S. (2009). Unraveling the ''Model Minority'' Stereotype: Listening to Asian American Youth.         Teachers College Press.The updated second edition offers the latest in social science research on Asian-American high school students. The author argues against assuming that all Asian-Americans have the same experience inAmerican schools. She successfully presents an insider perspective to help teachers correctmisunderstandings about this group of students.
  • Lorde, Audre    Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches                                                                                      If you haven't read Black lesbian icon Audre Lorde, start here. In a series of 15 searing essays and speeches, Lorde takes aim at sexism, racism, ageism, homophobia, and class in language that will have you highlighting every other line. Originally published over 30 years ago, it's never been more timely. 
  • Morrison, Toni   Home    Everything Toni Morrison writes is worth reading, but this story of a veteran returning to a racist America after fighting in the Korean War will stick with you. Read this one, then work your way through Morrison's entire catalogue. She's a reading list unto herself. 
  • Oluo, Ijeoma. So You Want to Talk About Race.In this breakout book, Ijeoma Oluo explores the complex reality of today’s racial landscape—from white privilege and police brutality to systemic discrimination and the Black Lives Matter movement—offering straightforward clarity that readers need to contribute to the dismantling of the racial divide.

  • Saad, Layla  Supremacy: Combat Racism, Change the World, and Become a Good Ancestor
    Sourcebooks Use this workbook to help dismantle your own biases, with personal anecdotes and examples, digestible explanations and definitions, and further reading to continue your journey. Wherever you are on your quest to combat racism, this book can help.

  • Singleton, G. (2005). Courageous Conversations About Race: A Field Guide for Achieving Equity in Schools. Corwin Press.This book is part of a larger program by the same name. The book can stand alone without the programto help schools talk about difficult issues and confront the challenges of creating an inclusive school environment.

  • Tatum, B. (2007) Can we talk about race? And other conversations in an era of school resegregation.       New York: Beacon Press Books.This is a follow-up book ten years after her first book (see below) became a best seller with widespreadaudiences. A psychologist and a teacher, Tatum focuses on the broader questions which still make racea thorny issue in our society.

  • Tatum, B.  Why Are All The Black Kids Sitting Together In The Cafeteria? Basic Books. RevisedEdition.Tatum's best selling book explains African-American identity formation, White privilege, and how the twointeract in our current school settings. This book is still a best-seller for its ability to discuss the issues ofrace in a clear and engaging manner.

  • Thompson, G.  Up Where We Belong: Helping African and Latino Students Rise in School and in Life. Jossey-Bass. 2nd ed.This book is unique on the list in that it mixes in student voices with adult voices. Using current research,Thompson offers teachers practical teaching strategies while making a clear case for instructionalimprovement among our African and Latino population.

  • Ward, Jesmyn  The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks about Race                                                 The National Book Award-winning author of Salvage the Bones edited this anthology of essays and poems that engage with James Baldwin's 1963 examination of race in America, The Fire Next Time. Organized into three sections, it looks at our legacy, the state of things today, and how we can work toward a better future
  • Young, Damon What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Blacker: A Memoir in Essays
    A memoir in essays by the co-founder of the news and culture website VerySmartBrothas.com, this one breaks down the stereotypes of what a Black man is supposed to be, and how society forces these boxes on people who don't fit inside them. It might make you confront deep-seated misconceptions you didn't even know you had. 

ADDITIONAL ASSIGNMENTS REQUIRED FOR UNIVERSITY QUARTER CREDIT

B. LEARNING APPLICATION

In this section you will apply your learning to your professional situation. This course assumes that most participants are classroom teachers who have access to students. If you do not have a classroom available to you, please contact the instructor for course modifications. Assignments done in a course forum will show responses from all educators active in the course. Feel free to read and respond to others comments. 

 



Assignment #4: My School

My school:   Answer the following self-assessment questions of your current school setting.  

Part 1: School Assessment

Take a walk around your school, noticing art, messages and other cultural relevant displays.

Reflect on what you see or don't see that represents culturally relevance and inclusiveness..

What, if any, stereotypes are you seeing around the school?

What current professional development is being done to address cultural proficiency?

How is the community, parents and students involved in promoting cultural proficiency?

Part 2:

Write an action plan for your current school, citing 3-4 ways to become more culturally proficient. Consider professional development, student/parent feedback and involvement, community connections.  Be specific in timelines, budget, contact personnel that can help support the plan and activities that could promote culturally proficiency.

Assignment #5: My Classroom

My classroom

1) Using ideas gained from this course, and from the book you read for assignment #3, do a self-evaluation of your current classroom.  In which ways do you exhibit culturally relevant teaching?  In which ways do your lessons display anti-racism, cultural understanding, and an open-mindedness to learn from students of diverse backgrounds?  In which ways do your current classroom environment and lessons fall short of your hopes and beliefs about respecting cultural diversity?  Post your response, approximately 500 words, in the online response box.

In addition, choose ONE of the following learning application activities:

  • 2a) If it is during the school year, keep a journal for at least one month with a few entries each week.Please keep this in a Word document form, so that you can submit it later. One of the best ways to move forward is to observe our own behavior and to notice our own classroom environment.Observe any aspects of your classroom environment that tie in with ideas learned so far.This can include interactions between students, interactions between yourself and one or more students, lessons which do or do not show culturally relevant teaching, etc. It can also include conversations with other staff members. Comment in 1-2 pages about what you think you do well and what you would like to do differently.Please post a copy of your journal in the online response box (or upload using the “Share A File” feature) with a final reflection of about two paragraphs.

OR

  • 2b)Develop two lessons that exhibit culturally relevant teaching or focus on anti-racism curriculum.Teach these lessons to your class and reflect on how the lesson went. If it is summer, write about why you developed these lessons and how they will fit into your current curriculum.The lesson content can be on any subject, but the delivery, methods, or assessment should reflect what you have learned from this course with regards to cultural competence.(Example:Have students define and write about what “family” means to them.Discuss the importance of extended families in some cultures and affirm the concepts of blended families and families where more than one culture is brought together. Emphasize how all type of families are important, there isn’t just one type of family.Older students can write about family memories.)Post your lesson plans for followed by a reflection in the on line response box.

Assignment #6: Six Learning Outcomes

Review the six learning outcomes described in this syllabus.   In 300-500 words, do a self-evaluation on where you feel you are at on your personal journey to gain cultural competence and post this in the online response box.  Understanding race and culture is a complicated matter, and a personal matter, which requires a lot of soul searching coupled with knowledge of various cultures.  How has this course helped you on your journey?  In 300-500 words, write a self-evaluation on where you feel you are on your personal journey to gain cultural competence and post this in the online response box.

Assignment #7: (500 Level ONLY)

In addition to the 400 level assignments, complete one of the following:

 

Option A) Peruse the website Teachingtolerance.org.  Explore at least three different sections.  I would suggest you go back to the www.tolerance.org/tdsi section and look under learning resources.  There you will find a plethora of articles and videos to help you on this subject.  Write down five ideas for classroom lessons, materials, or resources and connect them to specific curriculum topics or standards that you currently teach.  What curriculum materials stand out to you that would be valuable in your school, team, or classroom?  Then, write a one-paragraph review of the website.  Explain the major content of the site and evaluate its contribution to teaching about racism and cultural diversity.  Post your response in the online response box.

OR

Option B) Another assignment of your own choice with the instructor’s prior approval.

C. INTEGRATION PAPER

Assignment #8: (Required for 400 and 500 Level)

SELF REFLECTION & INTEGRATION PAPER
(Please do not write this paper until you've completed all of your other assignments)

Write a 350-500 word Integration Paper answering these 5 questions:

  1. What did you learn vs. what you expected to learn from this course?
  2. What aspects of the course were most helpful and why?
  3. What further knowledge and skills in this general area do you feel you need?
  4. How, when and where will you use what you have learned?
  5. How and with what other school or community members might you share what you learned?


INSTRUCTOR COMMENTS ON YOUR WORK:

Please indicate by email to the instructor if you would like to receive comments on your assignments.

QUALIFICATIONS FOR TEACHING THIS COURSE:

Wendi Fein, M.A., enthusiastically brings her years of teaching experiences since 1980 to the development and implementation of her courses. Presently, she is teaching Adult Education, Developmental Math and English as a Second Language at Tacoma Community College in Tacoma Washington.  

She spent 25 years teaching in K-12 public schools with a focus on special education, math, dance, PE, study skills and English/World Cultures. In addition, Wendi has traveled and volunteered extensively, bringing her stories and passion for human rights and equity into the classroom. Wendi holds a B.A. from the University of California, Santa Barbara and an M.A. in Special Education.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

RACE, CULTURE & BIAS IN EDUCATION:  Culturally Proficient Teaching

In selecting possible choices for your book review, I took into consideration the following criteria: critical reviews by authorities in the field, publication date (within 10 years), a variety of topics that you may be interested in, and cost.   If there is a particular book that you would like to review that is not on this list, please contact me first.

Chi, M. and Park, C. editors.  (1999) Asian-American Education: Prospects and Challenges.  Praeger.
This book includes essays from various authors about seven major Asian-American groups, emphasizing that teachers can not lump all Asian students together, and their are unique differences within various Asian ethnic and linguistic groups.

Davis, B.  (2005) How To Teach Students Who Don’t Look Like You: Culturally Relevant Teaching Strategies. Corwin Press.
This book offers a common-sense approach to teaching diverse learners and includes various teaching strategies to close the achievement gap.

Gay, G. editor.  (2003).  Becoming Multicultural Educators: Personal Journey Toward Professional Agency.  Jossey-Bass.
This book includes 14 stories of personal journeys to help teachers along a path of personal growth.  Becoming a multicultural educator is a lengthy and unique process for each of us, and teachers will be able to relate to the personal journeys shared here.

Howard, G. and Nieto, S. (2006). We Can't Teach What We Don't Know: White Teachers, Multiracial Schools.  Teachers College Press.
Howard discusses what good teachers know and do in the classroom and shares real stories of how schools are successfully closing the achievement gap.

Kunjufu, J. (2002)  Black Students, Middle Class Teachers.  African-American Images.
A successful author of many non-fiction books about African-Americans, the author proposes reasons why our education system is failing to serve minority students.  He also offers ways that schools can change to meet the needs of our minority students who live below the poverty line.

Ladson-Billings, G.  (2009) The Dreamkeepers:  Successful Teachers of African-American Children. Jossey-Bass, 2nd Ed.
This inspirational book shares eight stories of successful teachers who have developed successful teaching strategies in their classrooms.

Landsman, J. (2006)  White Teachers / Diverse Classrooms: A Guide to Building Inclusive Schools, Promoting High Expectations, and Eliminating Racism.  Stylus press.
This book is a straight-forward guide to tackling the issues of institutional racism and closing the achievement gap.  It serves as a model for school-wide transformation at all levels.

Lee, S.  (2009).  Unraveling the ''Model Minority'' Stereotype: Listening to Asian American Youth.  Teachers College Press.
The updated second edition offers the latest in social science research on Asian-American high school students.  The author argues against assuming that all Asian-Americans have the same experience in American schools.  She successfully presents an insider perspective to help teachers correct misunderstandings about this group of students.

Marshall, P.  (2002)  Cultural Diversity in our Schools.  Wadsworth publishing.
This is a basic text which offers chapters on five different ethnic groups.  It is meant as an introduction to those who are being introduced to ideas about how to teach students of diverse ethnic backgrounds.

Pollock, M.  (2008)  Everyday Anti-Racism.  New Press.
This book includes essays from various authors on tackling every-day issues that come up with students.  It will help teachers analyze classroom interactions and tackle challenging questions that may come up with students in middle and high school.

Robins, K., Lindsey, R., Lindsey, D. Terrell R., (Editors). (2005)  Culturally Proficient Instruction: A Guide for People Who Teach. Corwin Press.
In order to move forward with the premise that all children can learn, teachers must do a self-examination of their own beliefs, and the school needs to do an assessment of their collective beliefs.  This guide is a useful way to move through this process and change the status quo.

Singleton, G.  (2005). Courageous Conversations About Race: A Field Guide for Achieving Equity in Schools.  Corwin Press.
This book is part of a larger program by the same name.  The book can stand alone without the program to help schools talk about difficult issues and confront the challenges of creating an inclusive school environment.

Tatum, B. (2007) Can we talk about race? And other conversations in an era of school resegregation. New York: Beacon Press Books.
This is a follow-up book ten years after her first book (see below) became a best seller with widespread audiences.  A psychologist and a teacher, Tatum focuses on the broader questions which still make race a thorny issue in our society.

Tatum, B. (2003) Why Are All The Black Kids Sitting Together In The Cafeteria?  Basic Books. Revised Edition.
Tatum's best selling book explains African-American identity formation, White privilege, and how the two interact in our current school settings.  This book is still a best-seller for its ability to discuss the issues of race in a clear and engaging manner.

Thompson, G.  (2009) Up Where We Belong:  Helping African and Latino Students Rise in School and in Life.  Jossey-Bass.  2nd ed.
This book is unique on the list in that it mixes in student voices with adult voices.  Using current research, Thompson offers teachers practical teaching strategies while making a clear case for instructional improvement among our African and Latino population.