Diversity is very important in today’s society especially within a primary school setting. The world we live in today is significantly diverse and people have to try and have an understanding of it.
On the first week of this module we had a talk on WOSDEC who’s aim is to promote social justice through education. Their learning is focused on encouraging and demonstrating to people what a global citizen is and also helping people to gain an understanding of social justice and equity. I feel that being able to understand social justice and equity is a skill necessary for me to develop throughout my journey of becoming a primary school teacher. After today’s workshop I felt that I had gained more knowledge upon this topic as I realised that there were a lot more components involved. For example, looking at a diagram on learning for sustainability showed me that there are so many parts that link together and contribute to children’s learning around this topic.
I learned the skills that surround this topic I feel I possess some of these skills already and the ones I do not I can develop to ensure I have a strong skill set around this topic. For example, empathy is a skill that is very useful within this topic as it helps you to understand how the world works and feel empathetic towards things that could be harming the planet for example. This then means that I could make small changes like reducing my use of plastic to contribute to helping the improvement of sustainable development. This links to how I can carry the skill of empathy and use it positively within the classroom.
In the science workshop we looked at outdoor learning. We went outside and took rubbings of leaves and trees. Using outdoor learning within the school is useful as it allows the pupils freedom of being able to walk about and explore the environment around them. When we came back inside we were looking at how snails reacted being placed upon different surfaces. I quite enjoyed this as I felt as if I had a personal responsibility to look after the snail and make sure it moved once it was placed carefully upon a new surface with a different texture. This type of lesson could be used in a classroom as the pupils in the class can see what is in the environment around them and also take care of the snail when handling the snail which could then lead onto them being interested in looking into different components of the environment and how diverse it is when it comes down to the animals that live within it. Another skill that can be shown through this is problem solving as you would need to try the snails out on different surfaces to see what one it likes best and this links back to the diagram on learning for sustainability as problem solving is included within this.
We also had a workshop on cultural diversity, social equity and controversy. Diversity is so prominent in everyday life. Everyone is unique in their own way and it is okay to be different to others as if everyone looked the same and had the exact same skill set then nothing in society would be achieved. It is important that people are able to respect other peoples views even if their opinion on the topic is different on the topic at hand. The TEDx video about why cultural diversity matters was very informative. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=48RoRi0ddRU. He discussed the importance that history, language and tradition have in the preservation of culture. This could be looked at within the classroom as pupils will most likely have family from different countries or speak a different language and this could show them how they are involved in diversity biologically. Cultural diversity shows many ways of seeing the world and our place within it and that we all have unique sets of knowledge about various topics that we are able to build upon. Before today’s workshop I had never really properly thought about how largely stereotypes influence diversity from religion, to people’s living arrangements and people’s sexuality. I now feel I have deepened my understanding of this which will help me when discussing diversity in the classroom as I will have the knowledge I need to address the topic. I also found a pupil friendly video which looks at diversity and explains it for pupils. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XpSLtVXF0Mc. I could purchase this book and read it to my class when discussing the diversity topic.
Reference – learning for sustainability picture from; https://www.gtcs.org.uk/professional-standards/learning-for-sustainability.aspx