The paper "Identifying Race and Transforming Whiteness in the Classroom" is a wonderful example of a book review on education. The conflict of whites and blacks as teachers and students has been the common thread that runs across the three books – Other people’ s children by Lisa Delpit, Critical Pedagogy: Notes from the real world by Joan Wink, and Identifying race and transforming whiteness in the classroom by Virginia Lea and Judy Helfand. In spite of being similar, they have touched upon different angles of this issue. We would examine the three books and the ideas discussed in them in this essay. Other People's Children: Cultural Conflict in the Classroom In her book, Lisa Delpit has dealt with minority teachers and minority students in the world of education.
There are certain differences between the white community and the colored community of teachers and students that she finds. The examples and quotations that she uses to prove her point makes it much more effective. Her aim is to get the same opportunity of learning to both white and colored children. Teachers, who are working in an urban area or teaching minority children, can learn a lot from her work.
There are two chapters that are dedicated to diversity in the classroom and one chapter is fully focused on teacher effectiveness. It arouses the sense of responsibility in teachers by reminding them of the focused attention they get from the children. It becomes their duty to get love and respect from the children by devoting time and attention. She reminds the teachers about the growing diversity in the classroom and asks them to give equal opportunity to all the children and see to it that they all feel comfortable as a part of the class. One of her major discussion points has been ‘ skills’ versus ‘ fluency’ .
She feels that there has been a lot of debate on how to improve the fluency of black children. According to her, it is not the fluency that is their problem. She draws attention to the rap songs that most of the black children are apt at. She says it is a misleading assumption that these children's lack of fluency and teaching methods should be oriented towards improving that.
Even the lack of writing skills is also not their problem, she feels. As most of the black children write their own rap songs they are busy writing but of a different kind.
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