Candidates must complete a plan to introduce a specific classroom management strategy to their students beginning on the first day of class. Incorporate information from the text into your plan. 

View the PowerPoint below which introduces material from Harry Wong. Create a “First Day of School Plan” that includes the following components:

What do I expect from my students to reflect that I am implementing effective classroom management strategies?

What will my classroom look like on the first day of class? What best practices will I put in place to begin my management plan immediately?

How will I introduce myself to my students and their families? (Include a copy of a letter, postcard, presentation, etc.)

How will I introduce my classroom procedures and expectations to my students? How will these be explained, rehearsed and reinforced? (Include a copy of a song, strategy, poster template, etc.)

Research Guidelines

Student`s name


Assignment 1: Research Guidelines

(A) My Purpose (research question) ( /5 pts)

My research question is: Is there a correlation between stress and job satisfaction?

I chose this topic because it represents one of the most important factors that influence a person’s beliefs and attitudes. Both variables have cognitive and behavioral aspects.

(B) All About GSS 2016 data ( /5 pts)

1. Who are the participants? They are a population of people who are 18 years and above living in a household in the United States. They are English and Spanish speakers and they have not moved out of the United States.

2. What population does the sample represent? It represents 50,000 households.

3. Who is funding the research? National science foundation

4. When was the data collected? It was collected in 2016

5. How was the data collected? It was obtained in face to face interviews and through computer-assisted personal interviewing (CAPI)

(C) Variables (You are expected to have only one dependent variable (DV) and one or two independent variables (IV). ( /10 pts)

IV Variable name in SPSS: Stress

IV Question (as asked to the respondent verbatim): how often do you find work stressful?

IV Answer categories: “Always =1 “,” Often =2 “,Sometimes =-3”, “ Hardly ever = 4 “, and “Never = 5”.

IV Level of Measurement (nominal, ordinal, interval/ratio): Ordinal

DV variable name in SPSS: jobs the

DV Question (as asked to the respondent verbatim) Is there a correlation between stress and job satisfaction?”

DV Answer categories: “Very satisfied = 1”, “Moderately satisfied = 2” , “ A little dissatisfied= “, and “very dissatisfied = 5“.

DV Level of Measurement (nominal, ordinal, interval/ratio): Ordinal

(D) Frequency Tables ( /10 pts)


FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
HARDLY EVER13013.913.996.6

According to the analysis from the frequency table above, it is clear that 50.1% of the respondents express the idea that they sometimes find work stressful. However, those who never find work stressful constitute the smallest percentage with only 3.4 %, while those who express the idea that they always find work stressful hold 10.3 %. This implies that there are many people who find work stressful than those who are always happy at work.

Job description

Job satisfaction
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
ValidVery satisfied11840.140.140.1
Moderately satisfied13445.645.685.7
A little dissatisfied3210.910.996.6
Very dissatisfied103.43.4100.0

Out of 294 respondents, 134 (45%) are moderately satisfied with their job. Those who express high job satisfaction constitute 40.1% of the total respondents, while those who indicated high jog dissatisfaction constitute only 3.4%. This suggests that majority of the respondents are relatively satisfied with their work

(E) Graphs and Charts ( /6 pts)

Stress ( Independent variable)

The above bar chart illustrates that 50.1% of the respondents express the idea that they sometimes find work stressful. It is also clear from the chart that a small percentage of the respondents convey the idea that they never find work stressful.

Job description

The bar chart clearly illustrates that the majority of the respondents are moderately satisfied with their job. However, 3.4% of the respondents express high job dissatisfaction. Furthermore, the chart demonstrates that many respondents convey relative satisfaction than those who generally feel dissatisfied.

(F) Measures of Central Tendency and Dispersion ( /10 pts)

The appropriate measure for nominal is mode (McKelvey, & Zavoina,1975). The mode is the most frequent score in a dataset, and it is normally used to identify the most common category in a particular dataset. While The appropriate measures scale for ordinal is mode and median. For interval /ratio, the appropriate measures scale are mean, standard deviation, and variance.


How often Does R find work stressful
Std. Deviation.929

Since the measuring scale for stress variable is ordinal, both variance and standard deviation are out of scope(Daniel, & Cross, 2018). The median value of 3 means that 50% or half of the respondents sometimes find their work stressful. Whereas the mode value of 3 implies that the most common category is “sometimes”, in other words, it means that majority of the respondents express their idea that they sometimes feel stressful at work.

Job description

Job satisfaction
Std. Deviation.773

The measuring scale for job satisfaction is ordinal; therefore both variance and standard deviation are out of scope. The median value of 2 means that more than 50% of the respondents indicate that they are satisfied. Whereas the mode value of 2 implies that many people are moderately satisfied.

(G) Recoding ( /10 pts)

Choose one of your variables to recode. If you have an interval/ratio variable, you may recode it into an ordinal variable. If you have two nominal/ordinal variables, recode the one with the most categories into fewer categories.

Stress variable

SPSS Syntax







RECODE STRESS (Lowest thru 2=1) (4 thru Highest=3) (2.1 thru 3.9=2) INTO Rstree.

VARIABLE LABELS Rstree ‘rstress’.





Frequency table for original variable

How often do you find work stressful
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
HARDLY EVER13013.913.996.6

Frequency table for the recoded variable

recorded stress
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent


McKelvey, R. D., & Zavoina, W. 2015). A statistical model for the analysis of ordinal level dependent variables. Journal of mathematical sociology4(1), 103-120.

Daniel, W. W., & Cross, C. L. (2018). Biostatistics: a foundation for analysis in the health sciences. Wiley.


EDSP 726


Content 70% Advanced Proficient Developing Not present Chapter 14 Concepts

32 to 35 points Each prompt was clearly answered, fully developed, and explained in detail. Evidence from the textbook reading and a scholarly journal article are evident.

29 to 31 points Each prompt was mostly answered, fully developed, and explained in detail. Some evidence from the textbook reading and a scholarly journal article are evident.

1 to 28 points Few prompts were clearly answered, fully developed, or explained in detail. Evidence from the textbook reading and a scholarly journal article are vague.

0 points Largely incomplete.

Structure 30% Advanced Proficient Developing Not present Grammar and Spelling

8 points Correct spelling and grammar are used throughout the assignment. There are 0–1 errors in grammar or spelling that distract the reader from the content.

7 points There are occasional errors in grammar or spelling. There are 1–2 errors in grammar or spelling that distract the reader from the content.

1 to 6 points There are 3–4 errors per page in grammar or spelling that distract the reader from the content.

0 points There are more than 5 errors per page in the

grammar or spelling that distract the reader from the

content. Current APA Format Compliance

7 points There are 0–1 minor errors in current APA format in the required items. 6 or more citations are included.

6 points There are 2–3 minor errors in current APA format in the required items. 5 citations are included.

1 to 5 points There are more than 3 errors in current APA format in the required items. Less that 5 citations are included.

0 points There are more than 4

errors in APA format in the required items.


EARLY CHILDHOOD DISABILITIES PAPER INSTRUCTIONS After reading Chapter 14 of the O’Brien and Beattie textbook, you will research the concepts covered in the chapter utilizing scholarly journal articles. After reading the assigned chapter and scholarly journal articles, you will write a 2-3-page summary (excluding the title page, abstract, and reference page), in current APA format, addressing the prompts below. The paper should incorporate at least 6 citations utilizing at least 2 references (the textbook and a scholarly journal article) to support your assertions. Include a correctly formatted title page, abstract, and reference page. Organize the paper utilizing appropriate headings.


• What do in-service teachers need to know about the concept of early childhood special education development of the preschool child who had not previously received infant- toddler early interventions services.

• Why is a family centered approach to providing early intervention in the natural environment important?

• Describe the concept of embedded intervention that is used to provide early intervention/each childhood special education?

• What role does research and evidence-based practice play in early childhood interventions?

• What do pre-service teachers need to know about providing early intervention to students with special needs?


Stuart W. Volkow Alex C. Howland, PhD

The world of work is rapidly changing. Now, more than ever, the need for continuous workforce training

is needed. While there are many benefits to social and experiential offerings of face-to-face training,

distance learning is typically more practical in today’s society. Unfortunately, current distance-learning

technologies lack the immersion necessary for learning 21st-century skills. Virtual reality and

augmented reality (i.e., mixed realities) can be more effective for training and learning than traditional

flat-screen media.

THE FUTURE OF WORK AND THE OPPORTUNITY OF MIXED REALITIES TO IMPROVE PERFORMANCE Robots, automation, and artificial intelligence are rapidly changing the face of the American workforce. As more and more jobs are filled by machines, experts agree that the education marketplace will need to change to keep up with the growing and widespread need for worker retrain- ing (Pew Research Center Internet & Technology, 2017). While there are benefits to the social and experiential learning experiences that can be offered in a face-to-face setting, distance learning is often an affordable and flexible way to provide that training.

Unfortunately, most eLearning and webinar platforms only offer participants a passive experience (e.g., watch- ing videos, listening to a lecture). With corporate edu- cation, including employee orientation, onboarding, and skill building, passive learning is the norm, consisting largely of sitting down and consuming pre-packaged con- tent in bulk that’s presented formally by an educator (Hinchcliffe, 2017). Such offerings do not help develop the vital skills needed in today’s increasingly global and dis- tributed economy, such as teaming, communication, lead- ership, and cultural intelligence. They also do not immerse learners into the context of the learning and provide the ability for learners to practice in a safe environment. As a result, many learners develop feelings of isolation, dis-

connectedness, and frustration, often associated with poor retention rates and low return on investment (Willging & Johnson, 2009).

Mixed-reality technologies (i.e., virtual reality and aug- mented reality) provide solutions to these problems by allowing people to come together in an active simulated environment that allows them to see and interact with fel- low participants and the simulated environment, regard- less of geographic location. Such technologies have the po- tential to dramatically transform education, training, and human performance. The aim of this article is to provide an overview of mixed realities (MR), to discuss theories as- sociated with how the technologies can provide value for performance, and to provide specific examples of effective early-use cases.

Introduction to Mixed Realities Well told, any story can be immersive. From spoken word to literature, film, and television, imagination works to transport us. The new immersive platforms and media transcend these by adding an element commonly referred to as presence. Mixed realities offer increased immersion though features including head tracking, hand tracking, eye tracking, haptics, and 360 imagery. When combined, these add visual and kinesthetic cues that complete the il- lusion of being somewhere else, completely immersed in real or imagined environments. Virtual reality (VR) refers

Performance Improvement, vol. 57, no. 4, April 2018 © 2018 International Society for Performance Improvement

Published online in Wiley Online Library ( • DOI: 10.1002/pfi.21777 29

to immersive experiences which are completely separated from the real world. Augmented reality (AR) refers to ex- periences that overlay or are otherwise integrated into the real environment.

VR and AR technologies usually require tethered or wirelessly connected head-mounted display systems (HMDs—e.g., Oculus Rift and HTC Vive) with special- ized optics, hand controllers, and haptic accessories. In ad- dition to HMDs, almost any connected screen can serve as an augmented-reality window, which may be the most common modality for MR experiences for some years to come. The advent of numerous professional and consumer HMDs and development tools from Google, Apple, Mi- crosoft, Unity, Worldviz, and other technology providers are opening new opportunities for education, training, and development. The term mixed reality (MR) is being used by Microsoft (Hololens) and others to refer to a con- tinuum of experiences inclusive of both VR and AR.

The Value of MR for Learning and Improving Human Performance: Presence and Embodiment Chief learning officers, curriculum designers, trainers, and educators can take advantage of mixed-reality (MR) tools to create cost-efficient immersive experiences that engage learners in new ways and, in some cases, may replace or enhance face-to-face courses and collaborations. MR can accommodate visual and kinesthetic learning styles in ways traditional methods often cannot. Social, cultural, and collaborative aspects of learning that are diminished or eliminated with traditional eLearning platforms can be supplemented or replaced to good effect. While empiri- cal research into MR is still in its infancy, institutions are sharing results of their applied research and initial explo- rations. Some are shared in this article. Two examples of the value mixed realities offer to learning and performance are social presence and embodied cognition.

“I hear and I forget, I see and I remember, I do and I understand.” (Confucius) Social presence in virtual worlds has been shown to cre- ate a sense of realism and immersion that enhances learn- ing beyond face-to-face or traditional online interactions (Biocca & Harms, 2002; Robb, Lampotang, & Wendling, 2015). Simulations, serious games, role playing, and vir- tual worlds have become cost effective to create and pub- lish using distributed platforms for PCs, mobile devices, and head-mounted displays. Social VR is a term that is being used to describe mixed-reality experiences whereby

Social presence in virtual worlds has been shown to create a sense of realism and immersion, enhancing learning beyond face-to-face or traditional online interactions.

geographically remote users can interact and collaborate in virtual spaces.

Embodied cognition is another explanation for why MR is so effective as a learning modality. Embodied cognition is an emerging cognitive science that postulates that learn- ing, cognition, language, memory, and even mathematics (e.g., Lakoff & Nunez, 2000) are inexorably linked to our physicality, kinesis, and even the morphology of the brain and nervous system (McNerney, 2011; Wilson & Golonka, 2013). Our experience of the physical world is not separate from learning and cognition but rather involves essential parts of cognition, reflected in linguistic structures and the circuitry of the brain. Abstractions such as mathematics are metaphors understood through embodied experiences that include movement and gesturing (Lakoff & Johnson, 1999; Lakoff & Nunez, 2000; McNerney, 2011). For exam- ple, phrases such as “getting my arms around a problem” or “you’re on top of this” embody abstractions. Pointing, pinching, and even counting on fingers, are examples of gestural embodiment. This may be why learn by doing is such a powerful axiom.

MR technologies can bring embodiment to abstract and difficult-to-simulate learning scenarios. We posit that this embodiment extends the concept of experiential ed- ucation as proposed by educational philosopher and re- former John Dewey (1997). He stated, “Education should derive its materials from present experience and should enable the learner to cope with the problems of the present and the future” (p. 51). Dewey proposed an experiential continuum, whereby teachers are there to set up activities and experiences that lead to growth and where learning is doing. Mixed reality can bring together audio, visual, kinesthetic, and tactile modalities, thereby catering to al- most all learning styles.

Presence A sense of presence is a major differentiator between VR, AR, and other mediums. Presence is a shorthand for telepresence and is the illusion or perception of be- ing teleported somewhere beyond your physical, real

30 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi • APRIL 2018


Component Example

Spatial/Physical A visual, kinesthetic, proprioceptive, and/or vestibular illusion of being in a physical space from a room or a building to a mountaintop or a molecule. May allow the perception of moving through the space by walking, driving, running, floating, or flying. Sometimes used to describe telepresence such as in the operation of an excavator, robot, or drone. Also called first and second order presence (Riva, Waterworth, & Murray, 2014).

Sensory Achieved with haptics (i.e., tactile sensation and control), the illusion can extend to touch, vibration, texture, and pressure. Spatialized sound adds the auditory dimension with 3D binaural cues.

Psychological Psychological presence is akin to the feeling of being immersed in the narrative of a movie enough to suspend disbelief and accept the story-world as real.

Social Extends the illusion to the convincing presence of other people in the virtual world presented as realistic representations or avatars.

location. Books, movies, and games achieve this to some extent through imagination. MR technologies dramati- cally intensify the illusion. The works of Nonny De La Pena (Hunger in Los Angeles, Project Syria, Gone Gitmo) and Gabo Arora (Clouds Over Sidra, The Last Goodbye) are critically acclaimed examples of embodied journalism. Ms. La Pena’s immersive documentary and journalistic works have been instrumental in furthering the idea that MR technologies are empathy engines.

Even with relatively low-fidelity representations, the response-as-if-real or RAIR can be intense (e.g., De La Pena et al., 2010; Alsever, 2015; Watercutter, 2017). Stan- ford University’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab is fo- cused on VR technology’s application of embodied cog- nition theory and its impact on empathy and behavior. Stanford’s Empathy at Scale project is exploring how these technologies can be used to teach and measure empathy. Their research has verified the impact of virtual experi- ences on perception and behavior (Bailey, Bailenson, & Casasanto, 2016).

The International Society for Presence Research (2000) has defined presence more precisely by breaking it down into several components (as shown in Table 1). Variants of presence can be effectively leveraged to give learners immersive experiences difficult or impossible to provide through conventional means. Such immersion leads to in- creased learning engagement and retention.

Social Presence and the Use of Avatars Researchers have demonstrated how avatars in VR or AR situations can take advantage of experiential learn- ing, embodied cognition, and immersive learning envi- ronments to augment or replace face-to-face situations and to improve student engagement. Kahn (2015) has found that participants feel better with higher motivation,

score higher on retention, and are better able to transfer knowledge by using avatars for embodiment. She ob- served that students often merge their real selves with their avatars to great effect. The avatars are expressions of per- sonality that make real connections. Dr. Kahn has used avatars in virtual worlds to teach history and educational psychology. The Virtual Experience Research Group at the University of Florida has shown that avatars can be effec- tive in training medical students and professionals in di- agnostic and surgical procedures, replacing expensive and hard-to-schedule real people (Lok & Chuah, 2014). Urol- ogy residents at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine have been successfully taught core clinical communications skills using patient avatars in a virtual environment (Kava, Andrade, Marcovich, Idress, & Ruiz, 2017).

The commercial mass deployment of social VR plat- forms may make the demand for this kind of learning ex- perience grow rapidly as users become comfortable with the modality. At Facebook’s F8 Annual Developers Sum- mit, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the beta release of Spaces, its social VR application. Spaces uses avatars to interact in virtual environments. Indicative of its commitment to AR and VR, Facebook has a head of social VR, Rachel Franklin. According to Franklin (2017), “VR has the promise to be the most powerful social platform.” Franklin defends the use of avatars and asserts that in a short time users easily customize their avatars to represent them well and become comfortable with using them as a proxy for natural interactions so they can “be themselves” and experience a powerful sense of presence in VR, or as she describes it, “an extension of who you are.” Such social presence allows communities of learners to come together, regardless of geographical location, to share, network, and learn. The social VR platform, VirBELA, allows users to

Performance Improvement • Volume 57 • Number 4 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi 31

connect and communicate across devices: iOS/Android, Mac/PC, and fully immersive VR. Universities such as the University of California and the Stanford Graduate School of Business use the technology for distance learning with students around the world.

Learning Games and Serious Games Another benefit to MR technologies is that they can house simulations and serious games. The term serious games has been applied to games that teach, motivate, and result in organized actions. Simulation, role-playing, and strat- egy games use clever game mechanics to drive learners through progressive levels to accomplish learning objec- tives. Gaming satisfies the do in the learning ladder in ways that other methods cannot. Gamification of curricula with points and badges and teams is a superficial level with little use of game mechanics. In Reality Is Broken, futur- ist and game designer Jane McGonigal (2011) pushed the idea that adding a gameful element can make almost any- thing more engaging and memorable. Social games can bring people together in new ways for common causes. In VR users can design their own avatars, earn badges for performance in games or simulations, and appear in leaderboards.

Researchers out of the University of California–San Diego explored the opportunity for developing and assess- ing the global leadership and business acumen of MBA students around the world by engaging them in a business simulation in VR (see Figure 1). Thirty students from 10 different countries participated on teams in a VR automo- bile simulation where no two people were from the same country or university. The research (Howland, Rembisz, Wang-Jones, Heise, & Brown, 2015) highlighted that al- though the students were participating through avatars, the medium was effective in assessing leadership skills, cultural intelligence, and business acumen. Each team was observed by an organizational psychologist. The psychol- ogists believed that they obtained nearly as much infor- mation from observing VR behavior as they do when they conduct behavioral assessments in live face-to-face simu- lations. Impression management of students quickly went away. Students were so immersed that some teams were screaming at one another, while others came together for group avatar hugs with joy.

The research also showed the foundation of future op- portunities for assessment in VR. Server logs were used to observe how high-performance teams’ communica- tion patterns differed from low-performing teams, and heatmaps were generated to see where students spent their time in the environment (i.e., what information they were or were not accessing to drive their decisions). One lim-

Social VR provides a new platform for bringing everyone to one central virtual headquarters. No one has any advantage over others for being in the city or the headquarters or on-site instead of logging in virtually because everyone is virtual.

itation was the lack of facial expressions, something that may be addressed with improvements of facial and eye tracking in head mounted displays. The YouTube video of Mark Zuckerberg’s VR demo at the Oculus Connect con- ference (2016) provides an example of what is coming with facial expressions on avatars.

Opportunities for Mixed Realities to Improve Performance There are an incredible number of opportunities to lever- age MR technologies to improve performance. The follow- ing text provides a handful of examples of what is possible and what is already being done in practice today. The hope is that the examples cultivate creativity in the readership as to how they may use MR to improve performance in their respective industries and areas of expertise.

Example 1: Social VR for Improved Communications of Distributed Workforces Although there are many benefits to having a distributed workforce, many companies do not realize its full ben- efit because they struggle to build a culture with high- performing distributed employees and teams. Working remotely can be a lonely experience. Collaboration is typ- ically limited to transactional conversations and lacks the relational aspects face-to-face teams experience. Small groups of employees are all siloed from each other, as most of their communication is on webinars and conference calls that are isolated from one another. To compensate, companies spend large amounts of money to occasionally bring employees together.

Social VR provides a new platform to bringing ev- eryone to one central virtual headquarters. No one has advantage over others by being in the city or at the

32 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi • APRIL 2018



headquarters or on-site instead of logging in virtually, be- cause everyone is virtual. The spatialized environment and voice allows for fluidity in supporting diverse-size meet- ings, from one on one, to small groups, to hundreds of par- ticipants. Through embodied cognition, VR has the op- portunity to foster deep relationships among distributed employees. Learners quickly get the feeling of actually be- ing in the same room with one another, even more so than by looking at each other’s faces through a webcam. Quotes from our own survey research have included the following two:

“Very interesting experience—I can see using some- thing like this over Readytalk or other conferencing platforms. Feels more real.”

“I was skeptical before to start but was really very surprised by the virtual environment. You really have the feeling to be in the same room and work as a team.”

Imagine running scrum meetings in VR, going to a vir- tual ropes course for team development, having an open- door policy in virtual offices, or hanging out in a VR cafe

Performance Improvement • Volume 57 • Number 4 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi 33


with employees around the world for informal network- ing. Being represented by avatars has been demonstrated to reduce the unfortunately negative aspects of diver- sity from a race, weight, height, and culture standpoint and to change how people interact. Based on avatar representations, participants engage in more self- disclosure and can become more confident. The impact of an avatar on its user has been dubbed the Proteus Effect (Yee & Bailenson, 2007).

Some companies are already taking this to an extreme and are running completely cloud-based businesses in VR. eXp Realty is a cloud-based residential realty company that holds its board meetings, all-hands leadership meet- ings, training, and realtor transactions in a virtual head- quarters. The company is saving a fortune on brick-and- mortar costs, is inclusive of people across geographies, has a small environmental footprint, is growing like crazy, and has a united culture with its realtors around the United States and Canada. Because the company saves consid- erable money by not having a brick-and-mortar head- quarters, it can pass some of the savings back to real es- tate agents—a competitive advantage that has allowed the company to grow from under 1,000 agents to nearly 5,000 in about 12 months. The environment not only allows for instructor-led training but also supports communities of learners. Mastermind groups have formed organically, peer-to-peer coaching occurs, and the 3D environment is used for teams to break into groups to work among them- selves. There is no need to send emails back and forth to try to set up a meeting days or weeks in advance. Team members can just walk their avatars over to each other to ask about their availability or even meet immediately. A picture of the campus is provided in Figure 4.

Example 2: AR for Field-Based Knowledge Support Highly technical field-engineering and maintenance work, especially when health, critical infrastructure, and transportation are involved, requires both high levels of skill and access to voluminous reference information. AR is being successfully applied to provide heads-up visual overlays that reduce training time and deliver just-in-time reference information to workers when and where they need it (Abraham & Annunziata, 2017). Aircraft main- tenance is an exemplary use case. By augmenting skills with visual overlays and guidance from remote experts, training times for engineers could be reduced by one to two years (Deal, 2017). Similar cases can be made for dangerous construction work (Le, Pedro, Lim, Park, H., Park, C., & Kim, 2015), safety training (Quang et al., 2015) and manufacturing (Magid & Marco, 2017).

Example 3: VR for Competency-Based Training Spun out of Stanford University, Strivr is a company that applies VR, mostly in the form of 360 video experiences, to sports and industrial training. NFL athletes and coaches have reported dramatic gains in performances by being able to perform mental reps of plays in the 360 video re- plays (Gaudiosi, 2015). The benefits seem to be more than anecdotal (Casale, 2017).

Example 4: VR for Innovation Research on ideation has found that creativity is fos- tered when people and teams are pulled out of their nor- mal environments, allowing them to break out of their typical mental models. With VR, there is no need for

34 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi • APRIL 2018


expensive outings to immerse employees in such alterna- tive environments—or universes, for that matter. In an instant, employees can go just about anywhere. Innova- tion is also more likely to occur when silos are integrated, helping bring diverse perspectives and ideas together. So- cial VR will allow employees across geographical, market, and cultural silos to come together without the expense of travel to brainstorm and explore new business and product ideas. VR will also allow innovators to work with things they might not be able to do in the real world. For exam- ple, San Diego startup Nanome ( allows users to interact and build molecular models in VR that are obviously too small to see with the naked eye.

Example 5: MR for Marketing and Sales VR will have an impact in marketing and sales training, as well as sales execution. For example, a medical-device company could train its globally distributed sales force how the device works through AR or VR. The sales folks could even demo the product with the customer in this fashion. The emotional experience of interacting with the product is anticipated to lead to increased sales over a typical presentation with images, videos, or slides. Three- hundred-and-sixty-degree (360o) cameras are starting to be used heavily in the real estate (e.g., Christoffer, 2016), travel (Levere, 2017), and automotive sectors (Gaudiosi, 2016). Home buyers can tour homes without driving from house to house, travelers can get a sense of a vacation lo- cation before making a purchase, and car buyers can get a sense of what it’s like to take an Audi out on the race track.

Example 6: VR for Risk Management Safety training and risk mitigation are a lot more impact- ful and effective through experience. High-risk industries, including the military, oil and gas, and mining have been front runners in leveraging VR simulations for risk reduc- tion. Many risks cannot be experienced in the real world because of cost and safety constraints. VR reduces (or removes) these constraints. Employees will have very real experiences in VR that evoke emotions that encode learning into long-term memory and create ah-ha mo- ments. The application can be applied in areas such as diversity and inclusion training (e.g., taking the experi- ence of another to gain empathy), to practicing emer- gency procedures (e.g., what to do in the event of a fire), to helping in preventative design measures (e.g., explore the experience and safety features of a mine or Navy vessel before it is even constructed). Leading de- velopers in these areas include companies such as eon Reality, Cubic Corporation, Workplace Technologies Re- search Institute, and Luminous, although there are many others. These firms often specialize in MR development and also have expertise in such areas as instructional design, cognitive science, and industrial/organizational psychology.

CONCLUSION The potential for MR to provide performance improve- ments is immense. Taking advantage of these technolo- gies will take some time, iteration, and experimentation. Hardware will need continual improvement, and price

Performance Improvement • Volume 57 • Number 4 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi 35

points need to come down to increase accessibility. Many will likely wait for mass-market adoption before explor- ing these technologies, but early adopters may reap the most benefits. It is not too early to make smart invest- ments to use MR for projects that add value and pro- vide a clear return on investment; many companies are already doing so. This article has provided an overview of MR technologies, has touched on theory as to how the technologies add value, and has offered several examples of how MR can be and is being used for performance improvements. These are many examples and opportu- nities beyond those provided here. Hopefully, the exam- ples help ignite creativity and discussions to push into the unknown in an attempt to improve performance across many industries and professions with exciting emerging technologies.


Abraham, M., & Annunziata, M. (2017, March 13). Augmented reality is already improving worker performance. Retrieved from improving-worker-performance

Alsever, J. (2015, November). Is virtual reality the ultimate empathy engine? Retrieved from brandlab/2015/11/is-virtual-reality-the-ultimate-empathy- machine/

Bailey, J.O., Bailenson, J.N., & Casasanto, D. (2016). When does virtual embodiment change our minds? Presence: Teleoperators and Virtual Environments. 25(2). Retrieved from https://vhil .pdf

Biocca, F., & Harms, F. (2002). Defining and measuring social presence: Contribution to the Networked Minds Theory and Measure. Proceedings of the 5th International Workshop on Presence. Retrieved from˜lombard/ ISPR/Proceedings/2002/Biocca%20and%20Harms.pdf

Casale, M. (2017). STRIVR training demonstrates faster and more accurate learning compared to traditional study methods. Retrieved from 2017/04/STRIVRtech-Report_final_long.pdf

De La Pena, N., Weil, P., Llobera, J., Pomes, J.L., Spanlang, B., Freidman, D., Sanchez-Vives, M.V., & Slater, M., (2010). Immersive journalism: Immersive virtual reality for the first-person experience of news. Presence, 19, 291–301. Retrieved from 10.1162/PRES_a_00005

Deal, K. (2017, February 24). Commercial aviation MRO using augmented reality, virtual reality to bridge skills shortage gap.

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36 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi • APRIL 2018

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STUART W. VOLKOW is a visiting scholar at The Arthur C. Clarke Center for Human Imagination at UCSD, and an immersive media producer. He’s producing a VR slate with Deepak Chopra based on Chopra’s best- seller You Are the Universe. After earning his undergraduate physiology degree, he pursued neuroscience as a clinical researcher in pain and stress disease. He completed a fellowship at the American Film Institute going on to a career in film, TV, and interactive media. He pioneered Internet TV, and led a machine- learning company out of the University of Illinois, focused on music recommendation. He is an instructor at UCLA Extension, and Office of Custom Program, and is on the faculty of the Merage U.S.-Israel Busi- ness Bridge Program. He served the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency designing a knowledge management system, and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence focusing on the role of mixed reality and social media in radicalization. He may be reached at

ALEX C. HOWLAN, PhD, is an entrepreneur and organizational psychologist. He leads a cross-disciplinary team to create a social virtual reality platform to improve the way people learn and collaborate while geographically apart. To date the VirBELA technology is used for distance education by universities, to help Navy SEALs transition from military to civilian careers, to replace brick-and-mortar offices, and in healthcare applications. His research and innovations have received financial support from the Graduate Management Admissions Council, the National Science Foundation, the National Institute of Health, the Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen Foundation, and the American Psychological Association. He is also an assis- tant faculty member at Alliant International University in the School of Management and Leadership. He may be reached at

Performance Improvement • Volume 57 • Number 4 • DOI: 10.1002/pfi 37


Directions: Use this form to complete your reviews of the educational apps that you select. In addition, students will present and demonstrate some of the reviewed apps to the class. You should be prepared to demonstrate and talk about the educational app.

App Review


Description: (3-5 sentences)

Publisher: (Name and APP store URL)

Features (animation, narration, video):

Grade levels:

Subject areas:

Skills (Common Core Standards, Social skills, Curriculum objectives, what could you teach with this):

Lesson Use (highlight during lesson presentation): (4-5 sentences)

How would you incorporate or infuse this in a lesson?

Delivery format (classwide, small groups, individual)

What would students do?

What would teacher do?

Assessments: (Does the app record student performance)

Strengths: (3 sentences)

Weaknesses: (2-3 Sentences)

Recommendations: (1-2 sentences)

Overall impression: (Consider depth of content, ease of use, time to set up, etc)

Review this App and its features for following UDL Guidelines (CAST, 2011). Not every guideline needs to be addressed but hopefully you can find examples for at least 5 out 9 of the guidelines.

UDL Guidelines

Provide Multiple Means of Representation

UDL 1 Provide options for perception

UDL 2 Provide options for language and symbols

UDL 3 Provide options for comprehension

Principle II Provide Multiple Means for Action and Expression

UDL 4: Provide options for physical actions

UDL 5: Provide options for expressive skills and fluency

UDL 6: Provide options for executive functions

Principle III Provide Multiple Means for Engagement

UDL 7: Provide options for recruiting interest

UDL 8: Provide options for sustaining effort and persistence

UDL 9: Provide options for self-regulation

Assistive Technology Considerations Template

Subject AreaSample TaskAssistive Technology Tools, Accommodations or ModificationsLinks to Resource Vendors
Example :MathUse coins and bills to make change and solve math word problems involving money. (Arizona Department of Education, 2015)Talking Calculator andCoin-U-latorTalking calculators and money calculators provide tactile, auditory, and visual feedback and can help students with disabilities perform math calculation assignments. The Coin-U-Lator actually has buttons for coins and bills.Math APPs are electronic games that can provide additional independent practice on an iPad, phone, or computer.
Oral CommunicationDevelopment

© 2015. Grand Canyon University. All Rights Reserved.

Case Study: Jacob

Student: Jacob

Age: 9.9

Grade: 4th

Jacob is an active boy who enjoys coming to school and participates in sports after school. Jacob does well in most classes but has difficulty with new vocabulary words. This difficulty with new vocabulary is not only seen during reading class but also during content area classes such as science and social studies. Jacob’s mother indicated that he has always had difficulty understanding new vocabulary but that it has not affected his comprehension until this year. Jacob is willing to adopt new strategies that will assist him in learning and remembering new vocabulary words and also help him better understand the story as a whole.

Adapted from Paulsen, K. & The IRIS Center. (2004). Comprehension and vocabulary: Grades 3-5.

© 2015. Grand Canyon University. All Rights ReservedEffective Date: June 2015

articles summery

Article 3: “School within a School”: Examining Implementation Barriers in Spanish/English Transitional Bilingual Education Program

Published in Bilingual Research Journal

– This journal focuses on discussing theory and practice in bilingual education. Further, it discusses language minortity children in the U.S.


– The researcher primarily observed and interviewed teachers who participated in one elementary school’s Spanish/English transitional bilingual education program. The researcher sought to answer what barriers were present while implementation was taking place


– Administrators sought to physical and psychologically separate the bilingual education program from the general education program at the school

– Physical separation occurred as the bilingual program was located in area of the school that made the bilingual students and teachers feel as though they were not a part of the school. This also separated the students during lunch and other school activities

– It was apparent that the bilingual program was being provided with many resources, teachers felt that the bilingual program had more resources than necessary

– Teachers all had different ideas about the requirements for the bilingual education program and ESL teaching methods. This led to misinterpretation in the way the program was taught by each individual teacher

– More dialogue and sharing of knowledge was necessary between teachers, administrators, and staff to make the program successful


– A 6 month qualitative research case study of one midwestern elementary school’s bilingual program

– 21 teachers, staff, and administrators participated

– Ethnography was used

– 16 observations took place of participants with 8 observations of school events in addition to interviews

– Artifacts like notes school-to-home communications, and articles related to the school from local newspapers were collected

Theoretical Orientations

– Critical pedagogy was used to evaluate this transitional bilingual education program. This states that teaching is a political act that influences students and aids in releasing them from oppression. Freire was a major proponent of critical pedagogy

articles summery

Language Arts Journal of Michigan Volume 19 Issue 1 Relevance Article 9


Making Meaningful Connections: The Role of Multicultural Literature in the Lived Experiences of Students Gina Louise DeBlase Wayne State University

Follow this and additional works at:

This Article is brought to you for free and open access by ScholarWorks@GVSU. It has been accepted for inclusion in Language Arts Journal of Michigan by an authorized editor of ScholarWorks@GVSU. For more information, please contact

Recommended Citation DeBlase, Gina Louise (2003) “Making Meaningful Connections: The Role of Multicultural Literature in the Lived Experiences of Students,” Language Arts Journal of Michigan: Vol. 19: Iss. 1, Article 9. Available at:








Sitting in the back of an eighth grade

English classroom on an early winter day, I listened

while the teacher and students talked about the

Native American short story, “The Medicine Bag.”

In the story, a Sioux great-grandfather carries on

tradition by passing down the family medicine bag to

his great-grandson. Because this eighth grade class

was part of a K-8 Native American magnet school,

the teacher’s selection of this story seemed like a

good choice for connecting literature to the lives of

students. Multicultural literature has the potential to

help connect the world of the classroom with lives

our students live outside of the classroom. However,

in order for this potential to be realized, classroom

discussions of this literature must create space for

students to connect the literature to their own lives as

a primary means for creating significance and

understanding. For Native American adolescents, the search

for identity is often caught up in conflicting cultural

values between Native American and white society.

Mindful of the tensions this disparity causes in the lives of adolescents, Mary, the classroom teacher,

sought out multicultural literature, such as “The

Medicine Bag,” in an effort to make literature relevant to the lives of her students. She viewed

literature as an opportunity for students to “bring

their own lives” to the texts and to see their lives “in

the context ofa community [i.e., the classroom

community].” As she told me in an interview, she

wanted her students to use literature as a tool for

“express[ing] how they felt.”


Research supports Mary’s perspective and has documented how the use of multicultural

literature can help develop students’ abilities to use

multicultural perspectives and knowledge to think

about literature, society (Miller & McCaskill, 1993;

Rios 1996; Rogers & Soter, 1997), and their own

lives. The diverse perspectives found in the voices

of cultural groups who have been excluded from

literary study can offer “alternative vantage points on

the world” (Greene, 1992). In this view, literature by

and about Latinos/a, African Americans, Native

Americans and Asians can provide teachers with

opportunities for meeting many goals of

multicultural education, where voices interact and

students reflect, think critieally, increase cultural

awareness, decrease ethnocentrism, and develop a

global perspective.

However, as I learned from observing and

listening to the students in this particular classroom,

in order for multicultural literature to engage

students in critical thinking and provide

opportunities to connect classroom life to the lives of

our students, it is not sufficient to simply introduce

multicultural literature into the classroom. We need

to think more deeply and critically about the ways

students’ cultural, social, and community identities

and experiences interanimate with the reading and

teaching of multicultural literature in language arts

classrooms to create meaning. Because students

bring their own experiences and perspectives to the

reading of multicultural literature, using it in the language arts classroom requires attention to not

only what we teach when we select multicultural literature but also to how we teach it. What questions

do we raise for discussion? Do we engage and validate our students’ experiences and prior

knowledge to help shape meaning? Do we find

space for multiple interpretations and understandings

of multicultural literature?

Kristy, a student in this particular eighth

grade classroom, provides an excellent case study for

thinking about these questions and issues. As part of

a research project, I had the opportunity of meeting

with Kristy several times to talk about her

experiences in this English class. As Kristy narrates


her thinking around these experiences, she provides

an important perspective of the multicultural

literature she read in her eighth grade English class

as she connected it to her life.

Kristy At the time of this study, Kristy was a

fourteen-year old Native American girl a member

of the Mohawk tribe which is part of the Iroquois

Nation. Tall, with long dark hair and braces she

dressed simply in blue jeans, tee-shirts, and sneakers.

In her eighth grade English class, she was usually

very quiet and seldom contributed to discussions.

She was, as she told me teachers in her school

expected her to be – “nice, polite, and smart.”

Kristy thought of herself as a poet and, in

fact, she was very proud that a poem she wrote about

her grandmother had recently been accepted for

publication in a New York State student anthology.

She wrote her poem, “Ak Sot Ha, My Grandmother,”

in alternating stanzas of English and Mohawk,

perhaps as representative of her sense of living in

two worlds. Much of Kristy’s time outside of school

was spent at the Long House, and she was taking

lessons to learn to speak and write the Mohawk language. Several years ago, Kristy and her friend

planted a traditional Native garden incorporating, as

she explained it to me, “the old ways” of planting and sowing and together they were learning the traditional Mohawk meaning behind each of the plants.

Clearly, Kristy’s life experiences as a young

Mohawk woman were very significant and a primary social foundation to her sense of self. Because of this, I believed Kristy’s perceptions about the Native

American literature she read in her English class

would be particularly relevant and revealing for what

they might suggest about the role of multicultural

literature in the lives of students of color. In one of

two interviews I had with Kristy, I asked her what

she thought about the Native American stories she

read in English class.

Kristy: Sometimes [they] seem kind

of fake and sometimes real. Fifty

percent. Sometimes I feel they’re making fun of us. They don’t know

any-thing. They’re just talking stuff to

make us look bad. . .. They be

talking stuff they don’t even know

about and it just makes … me feel

bad… , And I feel angry because

they don’t know anything about it

and there’s stuff that wasn’t Native

that I learned. Like there’s always

two sides [to every story].

Kristy challenged the validity of the texts she

read in English class. Her sense was that sometimes

the stories were inauthentic saying that they “seem

kind of fake” and that “they don’t know anything

about it.” Further, these stories left her feeling “bad”

and “angry.” However, my analysis ofthe teaching

of multicultural literature in this classroom suggests

that Kristy’s sense of the stories she read was

directly related to the enacted pedagogy around the

reading and teaching of the literature.

Below is a segment of the discussion of

“The Medicine Bag.” In this classroom excerpt,

students were taking turns reading the story aloud.

Mary would stop the reading at certain points to talk

about what they had just read. This segment begins

with Mary introducing the story, prior to the beginning of the reading.

Mary: How many people in here are learning the Native American traditions? Who are you learning them from?

Kristy: My friends.

Amanda (Mohawk female): My pastor.

Mary: That’s right. You go to aNative American

church. Different cultures are probably so

integrated, we lose culture. Culture is what we eat,

how we dress, our values, the music we listen to.

The Native Americans had to retrieve their culture

because of it being systematically taken away. It’s similar to Black Americans.

Damien (African American male): Kristy, what kind

of music do you listen to?

[Kristy does not answer Damien.}


Paul (African American male): Beating drums. Mary: You have tapes [of Native American music] don’t you? Kristy: Yes. Mary: What’s the stereotype of Native American men? Amanda: TalL Mean. Mary: How does he wear his hair? Amanda; Braids.

Mary: At this age, you get embarrassed about how

parent and family members look and what they wear.

[This is in reference to the boy in the story who is

embarrassed by his grandfather sNative American dress.]

[Mary asks a student to begin to read the story aloud

and the student does so. Paul interrupts the reading

to ask Kristy a question.]

Paul: Do you know what that means Kristy? [Referring to the words “Hau, Takoza” in the story.] Mary: No. Kristy knows Mohawk. This is Sioux. Continue reading Kristy.

[Kristy reads.}

Mary: So do Native Americans show affection in public? [referring to scene in the story where Mom

moves to embrace Grandpa and remembers that public displays of affection are unseemly to the

Sioux]. No. Is that true now? No. Now, Native Americans like to show affection very publicly.

[Mary calls on other students take turns reading


Mary: What might fainting be a foreshadowing of? [referring to scene in story when grandfather faints]

Paul: He’s going to die.

Mary: Be aware that when something like this

happens, it usually signals something else is going to

happen…. Does anyone spend time with their

grandparents? [Many hands go up.] What a

wonderful gift! Why? Tina (European-American female): They’re wiser.


Kristy: You learn about the family. Mary: They pass on traditions, names. Grandparents accept and love you unconditionally. You don’t have to make sure that you do the appropriate thing. Jared (African-American male): They just spoil you. Mary: Jared, continue reading. I’m giving points for reading.

[Jared reads.]

Mary: Note what it says about the oldest male child. Even though it’s a matriarchal culture, this was

something that girls couldn’t participate in. Tina: What if there were only girls? Mary: I don’t know. I’ll have to ask the Native

American teacher upstairs. Are there any customs in your families that you’re uncomfortable with?

[No response.}

Mary: My grandmother prayed the rosary. We weren’t comfortable but we did it to honor her. Sometimes there’s tension. We’d say the rosary with her but not on our own. Although she thought we did.

[Mary reads the rest ofthe story.}

Mary: What do you think of passing customs down only to men? Paul: That’s genderizing (sic) or something.

[Bell rings for the end ofthe period.}

Mary: We’ll talk about that tomorrow.

In this excerpt of classroom discussion, there

were simultaneously several different purposes for

the classroom talk. From the beginning, Mary

attempted to acknowledge some students’ expertise

and personal knowledge by asking who in the class

was learning about Native American traditions. Kristy and Amanda responded that they were

learning from friends and the pastor at church,

respectively. However, rather than asking the girls to elaborate on what they knew, Mary turned to a

definition of culture based on popular conceptions of

culture as food, dress, and music. She then opened

space for a potentially significant and meaningful

discussion when she remarked on the similar ways

both the Native culture and the African American

culture were both systematically “taken away.”

Damien, an African-American boy, perhaps in an

effort to take up the connection that Mary had made

between these two cultures, asked Kristy what kind

of music she listens to. Kristy, though, did not answer to Damien. Similarly, later on, Paul, another

African-American boy, asked Kristy if she knew the

meaning of two of the Sioux words found in the

story. Mary spoke for Kristy when she responded

that Kristy knew the Mohawk language and not

Sioux. Mary then moved on to make a

generalization about Native displays of public

affection and any potential for Kristy, Damien, Paul,

and the other students to engage with multicultural literature in a dialogue that might help them to make

meaningful connections across their own experiences

was lost.

This same missed opportunity occurred

again around their conversation about the role of

grandparents in their lives. Further, at the end of the

conversation, Mary introduced the issue of gender bias in the story and Tina posed an interesting dilemma (“What if there were no girls?”) around that issue which, again, was not taken up during this class session or on the following day.

Given the context for discussing

multicultural literature in this class, it is possible to construe Kristy’s boredom, referred to earlier, as

caught up within the anger she said she felt about the

misrepresentation of Native peoples in the literature

and her inability to articulate what she knew and felt

about Native culture. Stereotypical representations

of Native peoples, such as the description of Native

men that Mary pointed out to the class, were, at

times, unwittingly reproduced in the teacher’s own

talk. For example, during a review of vocabulary

words for a spelling test, Mary used the term “Indian

giver” to help clarify the meaning of the word

“rescind.” So, while Mary did attempt to use the literature to help students think more deeply about

their own experiences and to offer a social critique of

racism, these goals for literature were not elaborated

or consistent throughout her teaching.

Consequently, Kristy was never able to

articulate her own critical and resistant reading of

these texts, based in her own experiences. Recall

that in my conversation with Kristy, she said, “I feel

angry because they don’t know anything about it and

there’s stuff that wasn’t Native that I learned. Like

there’s always two sides [to every story].” The point

Kristy felt so strongly about was that she had come

to understand that the culturally dominant versions

of history she had been taught were not, necessarily,

the only versions or even the correct versions. Here

is the rest of my conversation from my first

interview with Kristy:

Interviewer: Two sides to every story?

Kristy: Yeah! I used to like to read about Abraham Lincoln. But when I heard about what he did to

some of the Native American people, I kind of hated

him then. Like they don’t tell you what he did.

They just tell you the good stuff really.

Interviewer: So how did you find out about what he

did? Kristy: I found out when we were protesting in Albany. We were protesting there and I was listening very closely. There were a lot of people there and it was noisy. And they were saying that they killed thirty-two Native Americans [during the time of Lincoln]> And that half of them didn’t even do

anything. And at the end when they died, they

holded hands together and sang.

Through her experiences outside of school,

she had learned there are cultural and historical

stories about Native people left out of classroom

texts. At fourteen years old, Kristy’s identity as a

young Mohawk woman has begun being shaped by

an evolving awareness of the ways in which her

identity is caught up in the larger sociopolitical

structure. Kristy sensed the missing voices and

perspectives (the other side of the story) in much of


this literature and it angered her and made her “feel bad.”

As a consequence, the teaching of multicultural literature (in this instance, specifically Native American literature), rather than creating

space for multiple meanings and the opportunity to

listen to and learn from students’ experiences,

reinforced the sense of polarized and oppositional

communities school community was set apart from

Kristy’s Native American community. In other

words, there existed a disconnect for Kristy between

her experiences in school and the significance of her

lived experiences outside of school. Ironically, this result was the exact opposite of the teacher’s

intentions for this literature. Recall that Mary said

she taught this literature because of the opportunities

it held for “students to bring their own lives” to the

text and to see their lives “in the context of

community. “

In fact, students’ experiences outside of the

classroom directly impacted meanings they made

from representations in the literature as well as

classroom talk around the literature and the ways in

which they took up and, on occasion, resisted these

representations. For example, Kristy was deeply

involved with her Native way of life outside of

school. She had attended a protest rally in Albany

where she learned that Abraham Lincoln, someone

she used to admire, had been responsible for killing

Native peoples. She told me that her experiences

had led her to believe that the Native American stories she read in English class were “kind of fake and sometimes real. They’re just talking stuff to

make us look bad. And I feel angry because they don’t know nothing about it.” Yet, because there was no space for the articulation of diverse experiences in

the classroom, she had little to say during class. Mary interpreted Kristy’s silence as

reticence. In an interview, when I asked her to

describe Kristy her assessment is very revealing:

Mary: She is very poor. She has a learning disability.

She’s just a typical Native American girl. Very

reticent. But I thought she wrote really


good papers. She really would not articulate verbally. Kristy isn’t very bright.

Implications for classroom practice The teacher in this study understood the

importance of incorporating multicultural literature

into her curriculum as a way to make literature

relevant to the lives of her students. However, she

struggled with how to enable classroom discussion

about the literature in ways that allowed students to

bring their own experiences and understandings into

the exploration of meaning. As a result, she was not

able to achieve the positive goals she had for teaching the literature. In fact, as Kristy’s story

demonstrates, the inadvertent silencing of her voice

and the voices of others contributed to Kristy’s sense

of frustration. This suggests the need to develop specific strategies around the teaching of

multicultural literature that move students toward

connections in their own lives. Such strategies

involve allowing students to take charge of their own

learning and leaving space for them to ask the

questions and entertain the possible responses about

the literature they are studying. In this way, students

“own” the understandings they make about texts in a

way they do not when discussion focuses on the

teacher’s questions designed to elicit specific and

factual information. When students ask the

questions and clarify their understanding, then meaning becomes student-generated while still allowing them to practice their text analysis skills. In the classroom, this can be accomplished in several

ways: 1. Form reader response circles where reading

is acknowledged as a social activity. In such a circle, students can pick one passage they find the most interesting or important,

explain why, and invite others to respond

(Daniels, 2002)

2. Form literature study circles. These are

different from response circles in that the

former is an expression of individual views

and the latter is focused more on

collaborative construction of meaning


around the texts (Cherland, 1994; Daniels,


3. Ask students to respond in writing to a

reading. Some prompts might include what

they liked, what they didn’t like, what

confused them, and what they thought about

particular sections of the text.

Ifwe are better able to understand the many

dimensions of this relationship between multicultural

literature and students’ outside lives, we are better

able to create the democratic classroom we envision

– a place for the articulation of lived experiences and

perceptions of those experiences both in and out of


Works Cited Cherland, Meredith. Private Practices: Girls

Reading Fiction and Constructing Identity.

Bristol, PA: Taylor & Francis, Inc. 1994.

Daniels, Harvey. Literature Circles: Voice and

Choice in Book Clubs and Reading

Groups.2nd ed. Portland, MA: Stenhouse

Publishers, 2002.

Greene, Maxine. “The Passions of Pluralism:

Multiculturalism and the Expanding

Community,” Educational Researcher, 22.1

(1992): 13-18. Miller, Suzanne, and Barbara McCaskill, eds.

Multicultural Literature and Literacies:

Making Space jor Difference. Albany, NY:

State University ofNew York Press 1993.

Rios, Francisco, ed. Teacher Thinking in Cultural

Contexts. Albany, NY: State University of

New York Press, 1996.

Rogers Theresa. and Anna O. Soter, eds. Reading

across cultures: Teaching Literature in a

Diverse Society. New York: Teachers

College Press, 1997.


  • Language Arts Journal of Michigan
    • 2003
  • Making Meaningful Connections: The Role of Multicultural Literature in the Lived Experiences of Students
    • Gina Louise DeBlase
      • Recommended Citation
  • Making Meaningful Connections: The Role of Multicultural Literature in the Lived Experiences of Students