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 My personal experiences 
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During class today i listened to everyone's opinions about their experiences with diversity. I remember that someone mentioned their encounter with the girls who asked why everyone hated them. Personally, I moved to the United States when i was about six years old. I remember that my transition into school was a lot smoother than my older sisters. She was teased and harassed daily. She would come home crying almost everyday. She was in the sixth grade and I was in first. I think what helped my transition was the way my first grade teacher handled my introduction into the classroom. She and her assistant were very nurturing and loving towards me and made me feel comfortable. My ESL teacher was also a very important and influential person who made my transition a lot easier. Keep in mind that this was in the early 90's. Not a lot of Hispanic people around. I think that my family was one of the first Hispanic families in the area. After first grade i did start getting the comments and hearing whispers around me. I think that some of the negative opinions that my peers got about Hispanic/Latino people came from the home. I think that by going through the teasing at school made me a stronger person and it is a part of who i am. It upsets me that this is still going on today but i guess change takes time.
Please keep in mind when you are teaching students of another ethnicity that although they may not be speaking they are still understanding what is going on around them and what you are saying (receptive language is always more efficient than expressive language among second language learners). It takes time to learn another language (English is a hard language to learn). Don't try to rush things. Remember that students know that they are different; they see and experience it every day. Take the time to get to know not only the child but the parents as well. Put yourselves in their shoes and you'll see the world in a whole new light.

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Nadia Rubio


Tue Apr 22, 2008 11:19 pm
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I think ethnicity is just the beginning. There are hundreds of cultural differences and difference in language that have to be dealt with that reach far beyond the definition of ethnic groups.

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Jacob


Thu Apr 24, 2008 10:26 pm
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Nadia, I first want to thank you for sharing your experiences. Hearing your story has gave me a lot of insight into diversity in schools.

I think that working with children from diversity, like Nadia said, it is important to be welcoming and nurturing to the students. To help their transition into a unfamiliar classroom and culture.

Getting to know the parents and families from diverse backgrounds is also important because you can see how they live and see some of their culture. This helps you to understand where they are coming from.

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Jessica Smith


Sun Apr 27, 2008 12:00 pm
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Jacob, you make a good point. I believe that diversity takes many shapes and forms. Having an open-mind when dealing with these different types of diversity is the best way to handle them.

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Nadia Rubio


Thu May 01, 2008 2:31 pm
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