Teaching in a Multicultural Society Topic of Talk at KSC
KEENE, N.H. 10/26/04 - The number of students who are members of minority groups are on the rise, said Gloria Ladson-Billings, professor of education at the University of Wisconsin, yet few teachers are prepared to adequately address the needs of students from different cultural backgrounds. What can we do, Ladson-Billings asks, to better prepare the two million new teachers who are expected to enter classrooms over the next decade?
Ladson-Billings will be this semester’s Diverse Voices from the Field speaker at Keene State College. Her talk, which is free and open to the public, will be held on Monday, Nov. 8, at 7 p.m. in the Mabel Brown Room of the Student Center. The Diverse Voices lecture series is dedicated to bringing speakers who represent diversity in education to the college.
In her talk “Keeping the Dream: The Work of Teaching in a Democratic, Multicultural Society,” Ladson-Billings, one of the foremost researchers on teacher education in country, will draw from her experiences as a teacher and scholar to provide inspiration and practical hints to help teachers as they work to support excellence among all students.
Throughout her career as an educator, which began in 1968 as a teacher in the Philadelphia Public Schools, Ladson-Billings has explored the relationship between culture and schooling, particularly successful teaching and learning for African-American students. In particular, she draws on the real-life experiences of teachers to illustrate how good teachers can meet the challenges of teaching students from diverse backgrounds.
In her book Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children, Ladson-Billings provides portraits of eight exemplary teachers with approaches to teaching that affirm and strengthen cultural identity, not just for African-American students but for all children. In Crossing over to Canaan: The Journey of New teachers in Diverse Classroom, which examines the challenges facing eight novice teachers, she offers a model of teaching that focuses on academic achievement, cultural competence, and socio-political consciousness.
Ladson-Billings has won numerous awards for her scholarship, including the 1989-90 National Academy of Education Spencer Post-Doctoral Fellowship, the Outstanding Multicultural Research Award (1995) from the National Association of Multicultural Education, and the Mary Ann Raywid Award (1997) for distinguished scholarship in education from the Society of Professors of Education. She has published more than 50 articles and book chapters on teacher education. She currently serves as president of the American Education Research Association.
For more information, contact Dottie Bauer, associate professor of education, at 603-358-2864.