Department:   Early Childhood Education

Subject Area and Course Number:   ECE 132

Course Title:   Teaching in a Diverse Society

Discipline: Child Development

Units:   3.0

Repeatability:    None

Catalog Course Description: Examines the major social, economic, and psychological processes involved in human relations, as related to differences, and how these processes impact teaching, learning and other human interactions with young children and their families.  Self-examination, reflection and integration of practices to promote equity and understanding of how to best support children as they gain a sense of identity and become confident members of a diverse society.

Description for Schedule of Classes:  Examines human relations, as related to differences, and how these processes impact teaching and learning in a diverse society.  Anti-bias and other practices to promote equity are explored.

Lecture Hours per Week:    3.3

Laboratory Hours per Week:         None

Plus Hours:            None

Prerequisites:   None

Co-requisites:  None

Skills Advisories:   Eligibility for English 100 and English 103

Course Advisories:         None

Limitation on Enrollment:    None

Course Objectives:  By the end of this course, the student will:

1.            Describe and explain the nature and process of systemic oppression, internalized oppression, and pre-prejudice.

2.            Identify impacts on young children’s development of social bias such as racism, sexism, ethnocentrism, able-bodiedism, ageism, and classism.

3.    Analyze and identify their own cultural backgrounds, and contrast and compare their cultural identity to that of others.

4.        Recognize and acknowledge prejudice and discriminatory behavior in themselves and others.

5.        Use classroom materials to effectively teach pride in one’s own identity and delight is social diversity.

6.            demonstrate techniques for teaching children to identify injustice, and, in age appropriate ways, to take a stand on their own and other’s behalf.

7.        Evaluate and analyze various aspects of the roles schools play in combating social bias.

8.   Analyze contemporary educational practices and environments for cultural sensitivity and anti-bias perspective.

9.        Develop classroom approaches to human relations (Staff/child, staff/family, child/child, family/family, staff/staff) that promote respect and open communication across lines of social difference.

10.   Compare and contrast diverse cultural values and childrearing practices in order to work more effectively with children and families.


Course Content and Scope:

I.          Diversity in Society

              a.  California, U.S., and world demographics

              b.  Aspects of diversity including race, gender, age, ability, social class, family structure, etc.

              c.  Impact of culture

II.         Discriminatory Behavior in Education

              a.  Role of oppression and its effect on education

              b.  Historical dynamics of discrimination of minorities and differently abled.

              c.  Patterns of institutional discrimination

              d.  Critical analysis of self in regards to prejudice.

III.       Development of Bias and Prejudice in Children

              a.  Development of concepts of race, gender, disabilities, ethnicity, age and social class.

              b.  Identification of prejudice and discriminatory attitudes in childcare.

              c.  Social, cultural and institutional influences on development of biased attitudes.

IV.      Anti-bias and Multicultural Educational Environments

              a.  Anti-bias curriculum with young children: age appropriate intervention and analysis of the classroom     environment.

              b.  Anti-bias and multicultural classroom materials.

              c.  Visual/aesthetic environments that reflect cultural diversity

              d.  Integration of cultural competence in educational settings.

V.        Cultural Influences on Childcare Practices

              a.  A framework for understanding differences

              b.  Independent verses interdependent

              c.  Schedules verses natural rhythms

              d.  Attachment and separation

              e.  Eating, sleeping, and diapering routines

              f.  Socialization and guidance

VI.      Appropriate Educational Practices

              a.  Working with cultural conflict and discriminatory behavior

              b.  Identifying and examining culturally sensitive interactions and communications

              c.  Recognizing and acknowledging inclusion and exclusion

              d.  Creating and sustaining environments that respect cultural differences, fairness and equity

VII.    Parents and Community

              a.  Parent/teacher communications

              b.  Parent involvement

              c.  Community networking and resources


Methods of Instruction:  Class meetings utilizing lecture, discussion, role-playing, audio/visual media, group work and guest speakers.


Required Assignments: 

1.          Reflective journal of readings and discussions

2.          Self-awareness paper

3.          Classroom environment evaluation

4.   Media influence assignment

5.   In-class writing assignments and/or quizzes

6.          Final project or exam




Methods of Evaluation:   Evaluation of student work is based on the accuracy, clarity, concision, and degree to which they meet established criteria on their course assignments (reflective journal, self-awareness paper, classroom environment evaluation, media influence assignment, a variety of in-class writing assignments and/or quizzes, and the final project or exam).  The assignments are described in detail in the course syllabus and require analysis of reading material, identification of key concepts and deduction of conclusions about practical application of the theoretical information. Class attendance and participation are also considered as part of the evaluation.


Appropriate Texts and Supplies:

1.         Gonzalez-Mena, Janet.  Diversity in Early Care and Education – Honoring Differences, New York, New York, McGraw-Hill, 2008.

2.         Derman-Sparks, Louise. Anti-Bias Curriculum, Washington, DC, NAEYC, 1989 (Classic), reprinted 2000.






Approved October 15, 2007

FRC (12/14/07 gb)