Multiculturalism refers to the diversity in cultural and religious beliefs among societies. It may also refer to how people’s philosophical views relate to different cultures and values. Many academicians are most likely to encounter students and parents with diverse cultural settings. In addition, instructors may find it important to adjust a syllabus that entails issues of multiculturalism. Therefore, it is essential to adapt to diverse cultures in the educational system.
In my opinion, multiculturalism should be incorporated in the educational system. The concept offers students a chance to learn about different cultures around the globe. This can then make students appreciate and develop skills of interacting with people of diverse religious and cultural beliefs. For instance, in his book, Letters to a Young Conservative, D’Souza remembers his time in Dartmouth because he ate ethnic food when attending international students’ meeting. These meetings gave students opportunities to meet people from different cultural backgrounds (D’Souza 45).
I think multiculturalism is essential in the educational system because it offers opportunities to learn and appreciate the importance of different countries in the world. Sometimes students may have misconceptions about different countries they hear about because they lack information. For instance, D’Souza notes that his friends did not have a keen interest in learning about India during the international students’ forum.
I consider multiculturalism essential in exposing students to different perspectives of the culture. It can include minority communities’ culture in the educational system. This can give students a complete and equitable learning experience (D’Souza 45).
I feel that multiculturalism should not be considered to be a controversial concept in the contemporary society. Indeed, it should be an avenue for appreciation of diverse cultures to form a basis of interaction and cohesion in the world.
During my time in college, I found it interesting learning initiation practices of African culture from my friends’ stories. I also learnt about different religious beliefs and how different communities in Africa perceive God. I also discovered differences in art, literature, and music. This provoked my interest in learning about Africa. My experience reveals that culture can increase the appreciation of different parts of the world.
Some students have wrong assumptions about me because they lack information about my culture. For instance, people assumed that I was from Mexico because I was attending English Language Learner classes after birth. However, only my mother is from Mexico. My father is from America. Therefore, some students perceive that I follow the Mexican culture such as having hierarchical relationships, being a Spanish language speaker and Roman Catholic. I believe that as a Mexican-American, my culture is rich in cultural concepts such as family life differences, religion, music, dancing and festivals. Therefore, I think that students can learn about these concepts with the help of a curriculum with the room for multiculturalism.
During my schooling years, aspects of European and American cultures dominated in the syllabus. We even developed a notion that European cultures were equivalent to modernization. The educational curriculum had a focus on American and European languages, socialization, art, architecture, literature and religious beliefs. Aspects of my Mexican-American traditions such as music, art, literature, religious beliefs and architecture did not feature in the educational system. Perhaps, these aspects of my Mexican-American culture do not feature because educators did not feel they deserve much emphasis in the curriculum. However, learning about diverse cultures and their relationships is relevant in the modern world because students will encounter different cultural backgrounds in different parts of the world (Banks 1).
I got it fascinating to learn that the earlier education of my parents and grandparents put the focus on their local culture. They first learnt about their culture before exotic cultures. This is similar with my educational system that commences from domestic American civilizations before learning about the world. However, my educational system does not give emphasis to cultures of minority groups.
In conclusion, the inclusion of multiculturalism in the education system is fundamental in creating equal learning prospects for all scholars. The concept ensures that students from diverse ethnic, racial and social status share together in the education system. In my opinion, it is essential for educators to train students on different aspects of diverse cultures so that they can develop insights for future interactions.
Banks, James A. Multicultural Learning: Targets and Dimensions. 2013. Web. 9 May 2013.
D’Souza, Dinesh. Letters for an Emerging Conservative. New York: Basic Books, 2002. Print.