“Perhaps more than any other segment of schooling, middle school must exemplify appropriate attention to student differences • Gender Differences • Multiple Intelligences Theory • Learning Styles • Cultural Differences • Socioeconomic Differences • Family Differences • Academic Differences • Students with Special Needs
Gender Differences • Media Impact ( magazines, newspapers, etc) portray gender differences in exaggerated ways • Gay and Lesbian Students- often spend middle school questioning their sexual orientation • Avoiding Differential treatment- calling on boys more than girls • Equalizing Expectations- Science and Math
Multiple Intelligence Theory • Howard Gardner, 1983 Frames of Mind • Old View and New View pg. 58 • Eight Intelligences pg.60
Learning Styles • Four learning styles: • Imaginative-interaction, integration, sharing • Analytic- sit and get • Common Sense- real life application/hands on • Dynamic Learners- risks, challenges, order not necessary, most non-traditional learner
Learning Modalities • 4 Basic learning modalities: • Visual • Auditory • Kinesthetic • Tactile • Fig. 3.4 pg. 62
Cognitive Type Theory • Eight psychological type preferences (pg. 64) • Extroversion • Sensing • Thinking • Judging • Introversion • Intuition • Feeling • Perceiving
Self Awareness of how we learn • Students must know how they learn. Self awareness is vital component of increasing learning capacities. • We must help students identify their… • Learning styles • Modalities • Learning preferences
Cultural Differences • Culture: specific shared values, beliefs and attitudes (Rasool & Curtis, 2000) • Ethnicity: depends on a “sense of group identification, a common set of values, political and economic interests, behavioral patterns, and the cultural elements that differ from those of other groups within a society” (Banks, 1991, • p. 13)
Race: catagorizes individuals into groups (White, Black, Asian) based on certain outward physical characteristics (Rasool & Curtis, 2000) • Linguistics: There is a wide gap between what they (ELL) can understand in English and what they can say in English (Teemant, Bernhardt, Rodriquez-Munoz, & Aiello, 2000, p. 30)
Desegreation • 1954 Brown v. Board of Education- to dismantle racial segregation in public schools
Generalizations of learning characteristics • African American learners • More global, focus more on whole picture, rather than parts • Use approximations , like time numbers, rather than being precise accuracy • Prefer inferential reasoning • Rely on non-verbal, as well as verbal communication patterns • Sometimes distrust mainstream people and institutions • Prefer visual and aural cues
Hispanic/Latino learners • More group oriented and inductive thinkers • Peer-oriented and more likely to perform better in small groups • More external locus of control • Prefer more personal and informal relationships with authority figures
Native American learners • Not competitive- prefer cooperative learning and sharing environments • Have different concept of time than mainstream perspective • Frequently exhibit behaviors that seem to indicate a lack of interest in learning • Are more reflective than impulsive • More visually and imagery oriented than verbally • More often have an internal locus of control and are self-directed • View teachers as facilitators of learning
Asian American learners • Prefer formal relationships with teachers/authority figures • Are autonomous and conforming • Are obedient to authority • Usually conservative and reserved • Are more introverted
Socioeconomic Differences • More than 35 million Americans are officially poor • More than 10 million Americans live in high poverty neighborhoods • 30% African Americans and 30% Hispanics were classified as poor in 1995
Family Differences • Two biological parents • One biological parent • One biological parent and a stepparent • One step parent • grandparents • aunts and uncles • Adult siblings • Foster families • Other students in a group home
Academic Differences • Academic success is dependent on both ability and effort. • How students perceive ability and effort is critical in academic self-esteem (Strahan, 1997) • Underachievement: a discrepancy between a child’s school performance and some index of the child’s ability.
Students with Special Needs • Until 1975, students with disabilities were accorded no federal rights to an education. • The 1975 Education for All Handicapped Act mandated that all children with handicaps be given the right to a free and appropriate public education in the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) guided by an Individual Education Plan (IEP).
Special Needs-con’t • Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) replaced 1975 Act in 1990 to include autism, deafness, deaf-blindness, hearing impaired, mental retardation, multiple disabilities, orthopedic impairments, other health impairments, visual impairments, traumatic brain injuries • Was revised again in 1997 to include assessment, academic accountability piece
Inclusion • The assignment of students to a general education classroom. This is the LRE. • Often controversial between teachers
Learning Disabled and ADD • LD does not imply low intelligence • May be strong in some areas and weak in others • Inclusion can usually work with a resource teacher (intervention specialist) • Attention deficit disorder with or with out hyperactivity: age-inappropriate actions, trouble focusing, impulsivity
Message of Chapter 3 Diversity Among Middle level Students • ONE SIZE DOES NOT FIT ALL and educators must be aware and sensitive to this!