many millennial teachers simply begin their careers with the same narrow

Many millennial teachers simply begin their careers

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many millennial teachers simply begin their careers with the same narrow understanding of cultural diversity as their predecessors regardless of efforts to educate them on cultural differences (Ballantyne & Mills, 2008). 9 DIVERSITY IN RURAL INDIANA SCHOOLS
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There is, however, a bright spot that is starting to emerge in the literature. Garmon (2004) identified three dispositional factors that are integral to the receptiveness of teaching students to cultural diversity and inequality programs; openness or the ability of an individual to be open minded to another’s position, self-awareness or being aware of one’s own personal biases and being agreeable to critically analyze them and commitment to social justice or the commitment to strive towards equity and equality for each and every individual. Without these three dispositional factors, Garmon (2004) suggests that the student is less likely to take anything away from cultural instruction will be “ineffective in developing appropriate multicultural awareness and sensitivity”. Research performed through an educational experience study has shown that while not all individuals inherently possess these factors, it is possible for them to attain them through specific coursework. In 2005, Mills and Ballantyne offered pre-service teachers an educational experience as part of a study on the ability to develop the three key dispositions. The premise was that by offering students experiences that allowed them to examine and understand their own beliefs and feelings about diversity, it would give them a basis for learning to understand and gain insight into their beliefs “about themselves and ‘others’ (Mills & Ballantyne, 2005). What they found was that each student claimed an “awakening” of sorts about their inner feelings that allowed them to be open to new ideas regarding cultural diversity. Researchers did point out, however, that in order to be completely successful, teacher education programs should cultivate a curriculum that address issues associated with diversity over the course of several semesters so as to gradually educate pre-service teachers towards 10 DIVERSITY IN RURAL INDIANA SCHOOLS
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becoming culturally competent teachers (Mills & Ballantyne, 2005). Accommodations of Learning Styles Research has shown that students of different cultures display a tendency to learn through different types of learning styles Cuthbert (2007). For instance, African American students tend to learn better from teaching methods that utilize visual aids and movement (Allen & Butler, 1996). Unfortunately, while there is strong evidence supporting this, most teachers continue to use a “one-size-fits-all” teaching style where it is assumed that all students can be treated equally and many times the culturally diverse students are deprived of a quality education (Suprayogi, Valcke & Godwin, 2017). To prove this point, the article Culturally responsive teaching in special education for ethnically diverse students: Setting the stage (Gay, 2002) divulges that
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