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An RTI Guide to Improving Performance of African-American Students: What Every Teacher Should Know About Culture and Academic Engagement

An RTI Guide to Improving Performance of African-American Students: What Every Teacher Should Know About Culture and Academic Engagement

ISBN: 9780984715718
Publisher: Tier 1 Educational Consulting
Publication Date: 2012-08-10
Number of pages: 131
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This book is all about increasing academic performance of African-American students. Education is experiencing a paradigm shift in that most initiatives require educators to incorporate culturally relevant activities in the classroom. In addition, prior to identifying a student as needing specialized services or an IEP, educators are required to ensure that cultural factors are not the primary cause of a student s academic underachievement. Although educational initiatives speak clearly of the need to integrate instruction and cultural activities, most educators do not know where to start with such practice. The reason is clear: Many educators are unfamiliar with the cultural needs of students of color, primarily African-American students. This book examines response-to-intervention (RtI) in the context of culturally relevant instruction and sheds light on how educators can successfully incorporate an RtI model that meets the cultural needs of African-American students. This book details the relationship between culture and academic engagement, a relationship that every teacher must understand to work effectively with children of color. This book will help educators gain an understanding of how to effectively create a culturally relevant RtI model in their schools, a model that focuses on increasing the engagement of students of color. The author of this book provides concrete examples from his graduate school experiences to show how Afrocentric cultural responses are often misinterpreted and considered pathological in predominantly White institutions. He illustrates the principles in the book by revealing why he was described by his professors as deceitful, and manipulative, solely because he presented Afrocentric cultural characteristics in a graduate program that was dominated by Eurocentric values. The author explains that his experiences in White institutions are not unique, in that the behaviors of many students including students in primary and secondary schools who come from Afrocentric backgrounds are often perceived negatively by educators who are unfamiliar with characteristics that reflect Afrocentric culture. Important questions to consider: What effect does culture have on academic engagement? What does academic engagement look like for many African-American students? What steps must I take to begin incorporating cultural characteristics in my classroom? Why is it vital that educators incorporate Afrocentric characteristics at the tier- I level? This book provides vignettes and examples to assist educators with these important questions.

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