Culturally Appropriate Teaching

A. Wade Boykin, Ph.D.

February 28 , 2006

Video Segments

  1. Why is there an ethnic achievement gap?
  2. What role does culture play in a student's achievement?
  3. What teaching strategies can close the gap?
  4. What else can teachers do?
  5. What learning outcomes should teachers seek?


How can teachers close the academic achievement gap between Black and White students? Research based on a “Talent Development Model” suggests that teachers reassess the culture of American schooling, which seeks to sort students by ability instead of developing the abilities of all students. In contrast, the “Talent Development Model” seeks to build upon the assets that all students bring to school, including their cultural values and traditions. Following such a model, teachers will adopt “integrity-based strategies” that stimulate (1) critical engagement, (2) meaningful learning, (3) participation in a learning community, (4) constructive social interaction, and (5) cultural modeling.