Language and Culture in Education

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Language and Culture in Education by Mind Map: Language and Culture in Education

1. Japanese Cultural background

1.1. Japanese Script

1.1.1. Japanese spoken and written at home.

1.2. Immigration status

1.2.1. Japanese Americans in America

1.2.1.1. Issei (一世)  The generation of people born in Japan who later immigrated to another country. Nisei (二世)  The generation of people born in North America, Latin America, Hawaii, or any country outside Japan either to at least one Issei or one non-immigrant Japanese parent.                    Sansei (三世)  The generation of people born in North America, Latin America, Hawaii, or any country outside Japan to at least one Nisei parent. Yonsei (四世)  The generation of people born in North America, Latin America, Hawaii, or any country outside Japan to at least one Sanseiparent.                                                                        Gosei (五世)  The generation of people born in North America, Latin America, Hawaii, or any country outside Japan to at least one Yonsei parent. Issei and many nisei speak Japanese in addition to English as a second language. In general, later generations of Japanese Americans speak English as their first language, though some do learn Japanese later as a second language. In Hawaii however, where Nikkei are about one-fifth of the whole population, Japanese is a major language, spoken and studied by many of the state's residents across ethnicities. It is taught in private Japanese language schools as early as the second grade. As a courtesy to the large number of Japanese tourists (from Japan), Japanese subtexts are provided on place signs, public transportation, and civic facilities. The Hawaii media market has a few locally produced Japanese language newspapers and magazines, although these are on the verge of dying out, due to a lack of interest on the part of the local (Hawaii-born) Japanese population. Stores that cater to the tourist industry often have Japanese-speaking personnel. To show their allegiance to the U.S., many nisei and sansei intentionally avoided learning Japanese. But as many of the later generations find their identities in both Japan and America or American society broadens its definition of cultural identity, studying Japanese is becoming more popular than it once was.

1.2.2. Most Japanese in America are most likely to have been in the country for at least 2 generations and are unlikely to be unauthorized.

1.3. Parent/Guardian expectations for children's behavior in school

1.3.1. Psychological maladjustment and its relation to academic achievement, parental expectations, and parental satisfaction were studied in 1994, in a cross-national sample of 1,386 American, 1,633 Chinese, and 1,247 Japanese eleventh-grade students. 5 indices of maladjustment included measures of stress, depressed mood, academic anxiety, aggression, and somatic complaints. Asian students reported higher levels of parental expectation and lower levels of parental satisfaction concerning academic achievement than their American peers. Nevertheless, When compared with American students Japanese students reported less stress, depressed mood, aggression, academic anxiety, and fewer somatic complaints. than did American students. High academic achievement as assessed by a test of mathematics was generally not associated with psychological maladjustment. The only exception was in the United States, where high achievers indicated more frequent feelings of stress than did low achievers.

1.3.2. The family plays a crucial role in forming Japanese students’ attitudes toward schooling and academics. Specifically, in the Japanese culture, mothers are expected to play a central role in supporting their children’s education. They are often referred to as kyoiku mamas, or “education mothers”, because of their superhuman efforts to insure that their children will come out winners in the cut-throat competition that characterizes the country’s exam-based educational system.

1.4. Differences between American and Japanese students.

1.4.1. Cram School

1.4.2. Strict rules.

1.4.3. Japanese children rarely raise hands to ask questions and get actively involved in interactions with the teacher.

1.4.4. Many American state curricula emphasize the importance of group discussion and presentation. Japanese students will most likely be shy in front of crowds.

1.5. Conflicts or difficulties faced by Japanese students in America.

1.5.1. Lack of language ability, means an already shy student may find it even harder to talk with their peers.

1.5.2. In Japan, students cannot fail a grade, whereas in America students can repeat a year if they fail.

1.5.3. The school year is different;                                                                           First Term – early April to late July                                                              Summer Break – late July to late August (usually 6 weeks)                             Second Term – early September to late December                                 Winter Break – late December to early January (usually 2 weeks)                Third Term – early January to late March                                                  Spring Break – late March to early April (usually 1 week)

2. Chinese Cultural Background

2.1. Chinese Script

2.1.1. Most common language spoken at home is Mandarin

2.2. Immigration Status.

2.2.1. Most immigrants from China have settled in California (31 percent), and New York (21 percent). The top four counties with Chinese immigrants in 2013 were Los Angeles County in California, Queens County in New York, Kings County in New York, and San Francisco County in California. Together, these four counties accounted for about 29 percent of the total mainland Chinese immigrant population in the United States

2.3. Parent/Guardian expectations for children's behavior in school

2.3.1. Of family variables contributing to children's school achievement, parent expectation was singled out by researchers to be the most salient and powerful force. Existing literatures have reported that Chinese parents overseas highly expect for their children's education, and actively involve themselves in associated activities.

2.3.2. Pressure of Parents’ Expectations. Many Chinese students carried parents’ expectation when they study in the US. These expectations included the learning outcome of English language proficiency, the completion of undergraduate or graduate study, financial support, and a future career. Usually, parents spent more tuition than domestic students, so international students have more pressure to meet those expectations in a short amount of time.

2.4. Differences between American and Japanese students.

2.4.1. Chinese students tend to strive for perfection. Americans tend to focus less on scores.

2.4.2. Self-esteem.The Confucian mindset teaches Chinese kids to work hard, persevere and respect authority.

2.4.3. Respect for Teachers. According to an international study reported on by the BBC based on surveys of 1,000 adults from different countries, China has the highest level of public respect.

2.4.4. Creativity. Chinese kids do a lot more homework than American kids.As a result, it gives them less time to imagine, think, create and play.

2.4.5. Level of dependence. Chinese parents and teachers are not generally inclined to develop their children to be as independent as their American counterparts.

2.4.6. Personal happiness. This is where Chinese kids are far behind American kids. Studies have shown that the most common emotional health concern for Chinese kids is stress especially from academic pressure.

2.5. Conflicts or difficulties faced by Japanese students in America.

2.5.1. Academic Barrier.

2.5.1.1. Interaction with Professors, for example, some Chinese students feel that it is considered rude behavior if you interrupt a professor when speaking.

2.5.1.2. Isolation from Classmates. Isolation occurs when fitting in and making friends occurs.

2.5.1.3. Language Barrier. Language is a great hindrance in participants’ academic adjustment.

2.5.2. Social barrier.

2.5.2.1. Communication Patterns. Chinese students face difficulties not only in the classroom but also in their social life. For example, when international students joined different social events, they stated they had to deal with different communication patterns.

2.5.3. Cultural Barrier.

2.5.3.1. Punctuality students faced the behavioral norms towards time in different cultures. Sometimes, it could easily cause misunderstanding and uneasiness.

2.5.3.2. Reacting to Prejudice against International Students. Chinese students noted prejudice and discrimination in their academic and social lives. Thus, they were marginalized in class or in social events.

2.5.3.3. Utilization of School Resources as the Strategy. According to the participants in this study, school services are needed in their academic adaption to a US campus. These services include student associations, writing center, counseling center, recreation, and various student organizations.

2.5.3.4. Dormitory and Campus Activities. In order to overcome these challenges, participants took an active role to explore the new society and culture. For example, few participants started to look for native English speaking roommate in order to improve their English proficiency.

2.5.3.5. Language Support. Though most international students did show proficiency in written and comprehension English when they were admitted to United States schools, they faced a number of difficulties when they had to communicate orally in an academic setting.

2.5.3.6. Students’ Organization. Increase interaction with American students in campus is important. For example, participants stated that they discovered different students’ clubs or association in order to reduce the isolation from American students.

3. 5 Step Action Plan or promoting social inclusion, understanding, and mutual respect.

3.1. Step 1 Welcome the new learner.

3.1.1. Who - Teacher builds a close bond with student to ensure they feel comfortable in the class. This can be done by incorporating their students' culture in the the classroom. Parents have a direct role and/or some involvement in decision making

3.1.2. What is the step? - student is first identified and placed in the proper level in the classroom. This can be done by screening them before or on first arrival -student has access to the various programs and services offered at school ( program teachers should be in close contact with the homeroom teacher) - Parents have a direct role and/or some involvement in decision making - Close monitoring, evaluating, and reporting of students progress.

3.1.3. Why is this step important? - The first few days and weeks will be very important for the student and their attitude towards a new school, maybe a new county.

3.1.4. How will this be achieved? - create a fun and friendly school environment where students are not worried to make mistakes (most students who have little knowledge of the language will tend to stay quiet) - Have higher level students (or native language students) help the lower level students. Playing the role of "teacher" can boost their confidence and gives them a sense of purpose. - encourage students to join extra-curricular activities - Set up your classroom with word walls that have pictures or real objects connected to them - set up a classroom library that includes a listening center with books on tape . students can listen to a book on tape that they are not yet ready to read on their own. --have activities that involve team work (make sure different culture groups are mixed) -Follow a daily routine and post your schedule using graphics. When students know what to expect of their day, they feel much more comfortable.

3.1.5. When will it take place? - Some before the students arrives, others as soon as the student arrives

3.1.6. Where will it take place? - In School and at home.

3.2. Step 2 Aid communication.

3.2.1. Who will carry this out? - The teacher and the other students.

3.2.2. What is the step?- Using visual aids throughout the learning environment and changing through the year as different topics are learnt. Things such as  word walls, student work examples, and class routines and common usage phrases posted around the school in L1 and L2

3.2.3. Where will it take place?- Mostly in the students classroom, but also in selected areas, such as the Gym, where P.E specific language can be posted on the walls, for example.

3.2.4. When will it take place? - It will start at the beginning of the year and will be ongoing.

3.2.5. Why is it important? it allows the student to discreetly gain information, take the correct action and  continue communication

3.2.6. How will it be carried out?- Using visual aids the teacher can check the students comprehension.

3.3. Step 3 - Student Appreciation.

3.3.1. Who will carry out the step? - The teachers will set up the classroom and adjust his or her methods. Students will be in their groups but the teacher must be the facilitator.

3.3.2. What is the step? - Teachers should group students and attribute success equally among the group, based on the collectivist mentally of both Japanese and Chinese students.

3.3.3. Where will it take place? - In the classroom, and outside when appropriate.

3.3.4. When will it take place? - throughout the day and during classroom tasks.

3.3.5. Why is the step important? - Sharing success as a group is a great way for all students to feel part of achievement. This is especially true for Japanese and Chinese ELLs, as the history between the countries has some carry over to today.  Group work allows ELL students to improve their English  as their group will have a range of English abilities.

3.3.6. How will the step be carried out? - Teachers can split the classroom into groups, this is easily done via grouped tables. The teacher, with careful consideration, can allow students to take ownership of their groups, and then attribute the success of individuals both to the individual and to the group via a points or rewards system.

3.4. Step 4 - Mutual understanding.

3.4.1. Who will carry out this step? - The teacher is the one who will be implementing this while the students will be the ones affected by this.

3.4.2. What is the step? -  Realize that there are several difference between students of different cultures.  Activities should be used to create mutual respect in the classroom for the various cultures

3.4.3. Where will it take place? - This step should start in the classroom, but diversity should be celebrated in the school as a whole.

3.4.4. When will it take place? - This step should happen very early in the classroom so a comfortable environment of sharing can be created. This step should be used as much as possible to bring the classroom closer together.

3.4.5. Why is the step important? - This step is vital for a classroom with multiple nationalities.  Students need to recognize that everyone is different and respect them for their differences.  There is a lot they could learn from each other. During reading for this project I have read that different cultures learn differently and have different traditions and outlooks on life.

3.4.6. How will it be carried out? - In the classroom it will be the teachers responsibility to follow through with this step. Students should be encouraged to work together and to learn from one another. The teacher should make some events and projects about each different culture and ethnic group in the classroom. A classroom with mutual respect between and amongst the students and the teacher should be the goal.

3.5. Step 5 - Join in

3.5.1. Who will carry this out? - Teachers, ELL students, Parents

3.5.2. What is the step? - All students need an outlet from the pressures of academics, particularly for an ESL student. Taking part in an after school activity (Clubs, group tutoring sessions, sports, field trips) should give a chance to make new friends, express themselves and integrate.

3.5.3. Where will it take place? - School

3.5.4. When will it take place? - During and after school.

3.5.5. Why is the step important? - Due to the language deficit, it may be difficult for Japanese or Malaysian students to engage fully and express themselves fully. This step appeals to the holistic development and expression of the students. In addition, clubs provide a chance for students to interact with other students.

3.5.6. How will it be carried out? - Pair Native English speakers and ELLs in activities Encourage students to meet with tutor or more advance ELL students Play sports, music, arts, sciences through school or at youth recreation program Participate in field trips in local community organizations