Afrocentric Approaches for Culturally Responsive Education

Afrocentric Approaches for Culturally Responsive Education

Education for a shared humanity: Exploring diverse approaches to culturally responsive curricula and pedagogy Wendy Rago Victoria Vaccari Jimmy Aycart Damien Mulinga Mbikyo Afrocentric Approaches for Culturally-Responsive Education in the U.S.

Wendy C. Rago M.S. International and Intercultural Education Florida International University Pembroke Pines Charter High School; Pembroke Pines, FL Research Question How can Afrocentric approaches to schooling promote cultural responsiveness in diverse educational environments?

Culturally responsive pedagogy Theoretical framework for culturally responsive pedagogy in public education is based on 3 realities (Greenwood, 2011) 1. Institutional needs to address increase diverse student populations 2. Children of color face severe achievement gaps compared to White students 3. Current curriculum and instruction is predominantly Eurocentric Culturally responsive pedagogy is a student-centered approach to teaching in which the students' unique cultural strengths are

identified and nurtured to promote student achievement and a sense of well-being about the student's cultural place in the world. (Lynch, 2011). Holzman, M. (2010). Yes We Can: The Schott 50 State Report on Public Education and Black Males. Schott Foundation for Public Education. Cambridge, MA. Retrieved from http://www.schottfoundation.org Molefi K. Asantes Framework for Afrocentrism: Educational project to increase agency within

the African American community Interdisciplinary; African at center of subject of study African phenomena, events, and persons with a particular cultural voice, which is absent of hierarchy and hegemony (Asante, 2000). Afrocentric curriculum approaches Ideas of Afrocentric curricula are widely varied in their conceptualizations and

implementations Case Studies African-American Baseline essays (Portland, OR; 1987) Africentric Alternative School (Toronto, Canada) Use of Nguzo Saba Principles of Unity, Selfdetermination, Cooperative Economics, Purpose, Creativity, Faith Betty Shabazz International Charter School (Chicago, IL)

Internal Education Debates around Afrocentric Curriculum Advocates Critics Marable (2000) interdisciplinary; integrative Karenga (2000)- self-discovery approach, mutually challenging, and productive dialogue; utilization of

ethics; relevant to real life African American experiences. Mullings (2000) - ever changing, challenging a static, historical African cultural context Baker (2000)- vehicle for many African Americans to nurture their collective identity; allows for African Americans to personally invest in the betterment of the larger population Kilson (2000)- sees Afrocentric

studies as an emotive appeal for ethnic-group-solidarity-affirming character (p. 175); cannot be translated to an institution forging systemic outcomes. Ravitch (1991)- Afrocentric curriculum is a rejection of multiculturalism and should be described as ethnocentric, racial fundamentalism (p. 272, italics original). Ransby (2000) - creates a distorted

and one-dimensional view of our history (p. 237), refers strongly to gender bias within both Afro- and Eurocentric theories. Conclusion How can Afrocentric approaches to schooling promote cultural responsiveness in diverse educational environments? Creating a sense of belonging for all students in order for them to succeed Call for radical reforms to educational curriculum, then

pedagogies follow. REVISING WHAT KNOWLEDGE is IMPORTANT at all levels (primary, secondary, and post-secondary) Points for Reflection Curriculum that C.A.R.E.S. Consistent Action-based for their own communities Relevant to the needs of the demographic Engaging with other disciplines Student-centered Not focused on test scores, but focused on the

development of humans. This can naturally enhance students sense of belonging and roots in their community and build skills needed for the 21st century. References: Asante, M. K. (1991). The Afrocentric idea in education. Journal of Negro Education, pp. 170-180. Asante, M. K. (1992). Afrocentric Curriculum. Educational Leadership, 49(4), pp. 28-31. Asante, M. K. (2000). Afrocentricity, Race and Reason. In M. Marable (Ed.), Dispatches from the Ebony Tower: Intellectuals Confront the African-American Experience (pp. 195- 203) New York: Columbia University Press. Asante, M.K. and Ravitch, D. (1991, Spring). Multiculturalism: An Exchange. The American Scholar.

60(2). pp. 267-276. Betty Shabazz International Charter Schools. (n.d.). About Us: African Centered Education. Retrieved from http://www.bsics.org/apps/pages/index.jsp?uREC_ID=179005&type=d Binder, A. J. (2000). Why do some curricular challenges work while others do not? The case of three Afrocentric challenges. Sociology of Education. pp. 69-91 Holzman, M. (2010). Yes We Can: The Schott 50 State Report on Public Education and Black Males. Schott Foundation for Public Education. Cambridge, MA. Retrieved from http:// www.schottfoundation.org Greenwood, S.J. (2011). Culturally Responsive Pedagogy: A Study of Implementation. Scholar Works: California State University East Bay. Retrieved from http:// csueastbaydspace.calstate.edu/handle/10211.5/23 Lynch, M. (2011, Dec. 14). What is culturally responsive pedagogy? The Huffington Post. Retrieved from

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/matthew-lynch-edd/culturallyresponsivepedagogy_b_1147364.html Merryfield, M.M. (2009). Chapter 10: Moving the Center of Global Education: From Imperial Worldviews that Divide the World to Double Consciousness, Contrapuntal Pedagogy, Hybridity, and Cross- Cultural Competence. In T.Kirkwood-Tucker (Ed.), Visions in education (pp. 215-239). New York: Peter Lang. Thank you! Wendy Rago www.msrago.com Tab CIES for comments/feedback/questions/presentation/links

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