• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

“Developing Critical Cultural Competence provides educators with the inspiration, knowledge, and tools to move from theory to action in seeking to eliminate the achievement gap.”

—Bess Scott, Director of Elementary Education Lincoln Public Schools, NE

“As I read this book, it became clear that my long-held belief about the meaning of cultural competence needed a makeover. I am now convinced that my personal definition of diversity should embrace a much deeper appreciation of differences and transformative action.”

—Denise Carlson, Curriculum Consultant Heartland Area Education Agency, Johnston, IA

Cultural competence is key to improved student achievement

The increasingly diverse nature of today's schools and the need to increase the achievement of all students, no matter their background, requires 21st-century teachers to develop critical cultural competence. Looking at data is not enough. We have to know who our students are! This book shows you how to provide professional development that deepens teachers' cultural understanding. Developing Critical Cultural Competence helps educators translate new knowledge into action with activities that focus on the three inseparable insights required for developing teachers' critical cultural competency:

Understanding themselves; Understanding their students; Understanding their students' families and communities.

In addition to the activities are reflection questions, group discussion questions, online extensions for facilitators, and a sample professional development plan. A companion website provides reproducible resource lists and handouts as well as examples that can serve as models for some of the activities.

Bringing it All Together: How do We Maximize Teaching and Learning Opportunities?
Bringing it all together: How do we maximize teaching and learning opportunities?

This final chapter includes a sample lesson, a suggested plan for professional development for building critical cultural competence in professional learning communities (PLCs), and a longer-term plan to show how various activities from this book can be used toward leading transformation of school cultures so that they are more culturally responsive for diverse learners. Measures and indicators for success are also shared for ongoing evaluation of the effectiveness of professional development efforts. We also discuss how culturally responsive teaching (Gay, 2002; Nieto & Bode, 2008; Villegas & Lucas, 2002) relates to critical cultural competence. In the process, we emphasize the importance of ...

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