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Running Head: LITERATURE REVIEW 1 Literature Review DaShonda Eddins University of Houston
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LITERATURE REVIEW 2 Introduction Exploring the plight of Black males in education resonated with me when my son entered kindergarten in 2012. He did not have the exciting and affirmative experience that every kindergartner deserves. This caused me to self-reflect and reflect on educational practices in general. Additionally, in the summer of 2012 I was introduced to the concept of culturally responsive pedagogy and was astonished. Feelings I had discussed with select colleagues and family members for years had a name. The disconnect between many teachers and students had led to the pitfalls many Black male students faced each day in schools across the country. This was the beginning of the journey that has brought me to this point. Theoretical Framework African American boys bring unique characteristics and experiences into American classrooms. Recognizing the inherent strengths and qualities of these characteristics has eluded educators for decades, leading to misguided special education referrals, increased discipline challenges and dropout rates (Davis, 2003; Delpit, 2012; Kunjufu, 2005a; Kunjufu, 2005b; Kunjufu, 2011; Langhout & Mitchell, 2008). Limited research examines the perceptions of African American boys to inform and transform teaching practices. This qualitative case study investigates eighth grade African American boys’ perceptions on how successful they feel in school, their experiences of being in gender-based classrooms, and the influence of teaching practices on their success in school. Data from student interviews and focus groups, student journals, classroom observations, and teacher questionnaires, suggests (1) boys perceive their success in school is dependent on classroom environment, teaching styles, and family support primarily of their mothers; (2) benefits of an all-boy classroom are increased attentiveness, comfortability, and teacher’s use of relevant and differentiated teaching practices (3) challenges