A teacher who effectively supports diverse learners and promotes social justice is a teacher who considers all forms of diversity. This teacher would have to educate themselves on the uniqueness of their students to form lessons around their interests and needs. It is the duty of these teachers to inform their students on the wide range of topics that relate to social justice, and how it relates to them. Some ideas on what this could look like would be,
- giving a variety of assessments
- exposing students to authors of different backgrounds
- promoting mutual respect among students by making it a class rule and being reiterated by the teacher verbally
- engage in the students’ lives to gain knowledge on how they learn best
- use a variety of resources (video, images, text formats, etc.)
- decorate the room with educational images or text formats about social justice
As a teacher who would do the following, it would be my mission to create an environment that promotes inclusion on all fronts. One way to empower the students to do the same could be asking them for suggestions on the format of their tests and assignments. I could also allow them to choose the next topic we discuss from a pool of options I provide. I could take their suggestions of possible topics into consideration as well. It would be important to make the students feel like they have a voice. This would ensure the success of diverse learners while also sending a message towards the theme of social justice.
In the English classroom, the opportunities to include many forms of social justice is endless. If a teacher considers what topics would interest their students or what topics are circulating in the current news, the relevancy of the lesson can help connect it to the lives of the students. Therefore, the lesson will be more effective at resonating in the students’ minds.