Diversity Tool Kit
Toward Full Inclusion - Gaining the Diversity Advantage
12 Top Tips for an Inclusive Classroom
1. The "climate" within the classroom is welcoming and inspirational for all, e.g. teacher demonstrates an accepting attitude; physical set-up of room is "open"; classroom materials show different cultural groups/genders/ages performing in different roles, etc.
2. Diverse and/or multicultural viewpoints are incorporated into curricula throughout the school term/year, not as "add-ons" later in the course/school year.
3. Examples used in class reflect a balance of male and female and different cultural groups.
4. Language is respectful and inclusive of everyone in the classroom, e.g. sensitive to those of different sexual orientations, cultures, dis/abilities, etc.
5. Accommodations are made for students of diverse needs, e.g. textbooks in alternate formats for students with disabilities; class notes are provided before class to students in need, etc.
6. Students are treated equitably, e.g. aim for balance in males and females answering questions; students are not asked to be spokespeople for their apparent cultural group.
7. When issues of racism/discrimination arise, they are discussed in a straightforward and sensitive manner. Students want to talk about these issues!
8. If a discriminatory remark is made by a student or yourself, it is acknowledged and dealt with appropriately. When needed, policies and resources are sought out.
9. When possible, students or other relevant players are included, or consulted, in the curriculum development process and the creation of course/class materials.
10. When possible, "special days" throughout the year are acknowledged and/or celebrated, e.g. Black History month.
11. Classroom resources with a multicultural and pluralistic perspective are sought out, e.g. textbooks, guest speakers, elders, websites, films, etc.
12. Co-operative, experiential learning tools are used to get the point across about diversity, inclusion and acceptance of differences, e.g. role plays, games.
10 Top Tips for Inclusive Texts and Classroom Resources
1. Balanced, respectful and positive portrayals of diverse people/groups of people are presented in text and illustrations, e.g. those with differing sexual orientations, ages, disabilities, genders, income levels, cultures, belief systems, etc.
2.Text/material is culturally sensitive to the context of learners, e.g. resources created in, or about, Prince George, the North, Canada.
3. Text/illustrations do not perpetuate stereotypes of individuals/ or groups. If stereotypical and/or biased text is evident, explain based on historical/contextual factors of time.
4. When discriminatory episodes/situations in past or recent histroy come up, they are discussed in a holistic manner, including diverse points of view and covering controversial aspects.
5. Contributions of various people, groups in various contexts and/or various issues, are included in a balanced and objective manner. "Expert" opinions from unaffected groups are avoided.
6. Language/illustrations reflect inclusive and balanced portrayals of males and females. Sex typing, e.g. in select occupations categories or roles, is avoided.
7. When required, alternative forms of textbooks and class materials are accessible and available to individuals with disabilities.
8. Respectful, accurate and positive images/language is used to describe First Nations people/perspectives.
9. "Facts" and "opinions" are differentiated. Sources of information are provided and identifiable when factual statements made. Diverse sources/points of view are presented.
10. Illustrations/text, in general, reflect the wide variety of individual differences and similarities in our diverse world. Tolerance, acceptance and celebration of differences and similarities is promoted.
Excerpts from the: PATHWAYS to inclusion in the classroom project - Findings and Resource Guide - 2004