Whenever two or more people come together with a shared purpose, they form a culture with its own written and unwritten rules for behavior. Our families, workplaces, and communities all have cultures. These cultures have a tremendous, though rarely recognized, impact upon or behavior as individuals.
Multiculturalism is a policy that emphasizes the unique characteristics of different cultures, especially as they relate to one another in receiving nations.
Is a progressive approach for transforming education that holistically critiques and addresses current short comings, failings and discriminatory practices in education.
DIMENSIONS OF MULTICULTURAL EDUCATION
There are five dimensions of multicultural education according to Banks (1997). They are:
1. Content integration. It deals to the extent to which the teachers use examples and content from a variety of cultures and groups to illustrate key concepts, generalizations, organizations, and issues within their subject area or disciplines.
2. Knowledge construction process. It describes how teachers help students to understand, investigate, and determine how the biases, frames of references, and perspectives constructed within it. Students also learn how to build knowledge themselves within this dimension.
3. Prejudice reduction. It describes lessons and activities used by teachers to help students to develop positive attitudes toward different racial, ethnical and cultural groups.
4. Equity Pedagogy. It exist when teacher modify their teaching in ways that will facilitate the academic achievement of students from divers, racial, cultural and social class groups.
5. Empowering school culture and social structure. This dimension is created when the culture and organization of the school are transformed in ways that enabled students from diverse racial, ethnic, and gender groups to experience equality and equal status.
Subculture refers to cultural patterns that set apart some segment of a society’s population. It can be based on age, ethnicity residence, sexual preference, occupation, and many other factors.
Functions of Subcultures
· Permit specialized activity
· Identity in mass society
· Cultural adaption and change
Cultural differences imply the transmission of ideas from generation to generation by significant members of older generation (parents, teachers, religious leaders, etc).
To work effectively with students from different cultures, teachers must understand those cultures.