Is your curriculum inclusive for ALL pupils?

We live in a diverse world and equipping children to not just cope, but to thrive in diversity is a skill they will be thankful for later on. Motivated learners are engaged in their learning and what better way to engage learners than to ask them to share a part of themselves - a story in their home language, a key phrase they've learnt, a maths game or a special artefact. This doesn't have to be an 'extra' added on activity but the curriculum allows room for creatively entwining literature, mathematics, science accomplishments, skills, vocabulary and sayings into the formal day to day teaching where it has the status of 'real learning'. Consider the followign ieas to make the curriculuk inclusive for all children:

Artefacts

Pictures, photos, real objects can bring a lesson to life. Keeping rack of the visual resources you use can help you to se if you have any gaps. Asking children to brig things in to share can be a way of widening your resources and acknowledging the children's experiences as well. Consider your displays - are your maths, literacy and other dispays refelctive of the cultures of the children? Do they show non-sterotypical images?

Languages

Are the children's languages valued? Are they visible in the classroom through displays or dual language books? Are they heard? Are children allowed to speak in their home language, for specific tasks or at appropriate times? Providing space and time for children to maintain their language skills pays dividends in self-esteem and learning. Switching back and forth from their home language to English can help to reinforce concepts and vocabulary as attaching new information to waht we know already supports the learning process.

Literature

An inclusive curriculum permeates everything. The key texts you use should reflect a wide variety or authors and subject matter. Doing an audit now and then of the texts used over a year can show any gaps or over-reliance on particular groups. Consider all the other books and multimedia resources you use - do the mats text books show a variety of images in non-steroetypical ways? Are there ways to add to your current resources to include groups that may have been missed out?

Inclusive Curriculum resources and strategies

Black History Month websites

www.blackhistorymonth.org.uk

www.black-history-month.co.uk

www.blackhistorymonthuk.co.uk

Multicultural books for children

Multicultural book list

Mantralingua

Somali resources

Somali folk tales (online resource)

Somali stories for children (books to purchase)

Cultural and religious celebrations

Interfaith calendar

A calendar of notable holidays and special days in Britain

Multicultural dates - World culture celebrations

How to develop an inclusive curriculum

Here are some ideas to get you started if you are not on the 'culturally inclusive' road already. Firstly take stock of where you are - here are some questions to stimulate thinking:

  • What objectives lend themselves to widening the cultural sphere? Start with the more obvious opportunities first.
  • What texts do you currently use from authors from a range of cultures? How can you extend this?
  • Are their specific groups of children you would like to engage with more - can you find out about their cultural or linguistic heritage and integrate aspects into the curriculum?
  • Can parents be key players in sharing information?
  • Can you elaborate on classroom displays to include captions in different languages?
  • Can children find links to current learning in other languages or cultures?
  • Can you encourage children to share vocabulary in other languages on a day to day basis as they see links in what is being taught?
  • Can you set up systems in your school to share resources you find?

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