• Commitment to Diversity

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    In teaching students who represent an array of cultural and linguistic backgrounds, I am committed to supporting the acquisition of the English language and integration into the majority culture of the United States as I know it is the "passport" which my students need in order to be successful, productive citizens, able to fulfill their dreams.

     

    However, I am also a strong advocate for multicultural education and believe that it is to the benefit of the whole community to validate, preserve, and celebrate ALL students’ home languages and cultures, even when quite different from that of the majority. 

     

    Through our studies together, I strive to help students appreciate both the similarities we share across cultures as well as acknowledge the differences among us that make us unique. 

     

    The following poem, written by Rudyard Kipling, puts into prose the perspective on multicultural education that I try to bring to the classroom and school community.

     

     

    We and They

    By Rudyard Kipling

     

    Father, Mother, and Me,

                Sister and Auntie say

    All the people like us are We,

                And everyone else is They.

    And They live over the sea

                While We live over the way,

    But—would you believe it? –They look upon We

                As only a sort of They!

     

    We eat pork and beef

                With cow-horn-handled knives,

    They who gobble Their rice off a leaf

                Are horrified out of Their lives;

    While They who live up a tree,

                Feast on grubs and clay,

    (Isn’t it scandalous?) look upon We

                As a simply disgusting They!

     

    We eat kitcheny food,

                We have doors that latch.

    They drink milk and blood

                Under an open thatch.

    We have doctors to fee,

                They have wizards to pay.

    And (imprudent heathen!) They look upon We

                As a quite impossible They!

     

    All good people agree,

                And all good people say,

    All nice people, like us, are We

                And everyone else is They:

    But if you cross over the sea,

                Instead of over the way,

    You may end by (think of it!) looking on We

                As only a sort of They!

Last Modified on September 1, 2006