[EDEQUITY Male Dialogue] multiple dimensions

From: David Sadker (Dsadker@aol.com)
Date: Wed Dec 13 2000 - 12:58:43 EST

 Marty asks how teachers can learn about their classroom behaviors may
students on multiple dimensions - race, class, gender and the like. Because

teachers find themselves overwhelmed with classroom responsibilities,
sorting out how best to tease out race, gender, class, etc in the midst of
busy classroom interaction is indeed a challenge.
                In workshops that I do with school districts, I teach
teachers how to code - how teachers can objectively observe and code each
others classrooms to get an objective tally of who they interact with, the
level of their questions, their feedback patterns. The results are often
stunning. From which gender receives more attention, to the level of
questions being directed at the different racial groups, to the precision
the teacher's response, teachers learn so much when they can reflect upon
objective data. In fact, even classroom geography becomes a predictor of
classroom participation - students sitting in the Terrific 'T' get about
2/3rds of the interaction (The terrific 'T' are the seats along the front
middle row in the classroom) Analyzing the data to detect the different
treatment of African American males, versus Caucasian males, for example,
be a real eye opener. Comparing each of the male interactions with females
interactions by race or class or ethnicity is yet another learning
opportunity. Once teachers see these different patterns, they become
motivated to correct the inequities. In short, they become better teachers
for all their students.
David Sadker

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