Culture, Diversity, and Equity

Know Yourself

Breadcrumb trail:

Becoming more self-aware begins with examining yourself.

We each bring our experiences, perspectives, and worldview to our work — the good, the bad, and all of the in-between. These are what make us who we are and influence our practice with children, families, and colleagues. We also hold in our minds a picture of our ideal selves. Knowing more about yourself can pave the way to becoming the person and the early educator that more closely matches your ideal self. This first Key to Reflection and Inquiry can help you become more self-aware and intentional in examining who you are now and who you want to become.

A woman pausing for reflection.

Supporting cultural diversity in a way that promotes equity is an honorable goal. But the work can feel daunting as well.

Try This!

Which of these voices in the chart below best represents your own thoughts?
Voice 1 Voice 2
Look at all these cultures in my program! What can I possibly do with all these cultures in my program!
I'm excited about the diversity in my group. I am overwhelmed by the diversity in my group.
I'm likely to stereotype if I don't know how each family wants their cultural and linguistic heritage passed on to their children. I really try to be color-blind and accept all the children as they are.
It will be so much fun to learn all their languages. How will I ever learn enough words in all these languages?
I want the children and families to know that I respect their cultural background. I'm nervous that I’ll discover and expose some bias I still have about different cultural groups.
I wonder how having cultural celebrations really supports equity. I wonder how many cultural celebrations we can have.
I want to get volunteers to help the children regularly hear and speak their own languages. I want to get volunteers to help translate for the children.
I'm glad I’ve taken classes on diversity so I won't be resistant to including differences. I've studied so much about diversity and there's still so much I need to learn.

Keep probing your feelings about supporting cultural diversity and equity and the challenges it presents to you. Download the chart above and try putting additional contrasting ways of thinking in each column. Gather points of view from your colleagues and launch a rich discussion on the topic.

Use this template to record your observations, thoughts, and feelings.  Download the Template

Deepen Your Understanding

California Early Childhood Educator Competencies

Deepen your understanding of the expectations for Culture, Diversity, and Equity by reviewing the dispositions in the CA ECE Competencies. Scroll to page 21.

Can you find other places in this competency area that address the dispositions and understanding you want to cultivate?

Download the California ECE Competencies

California Early Childhood Educator Competencies

Extend Your Learning

Use the attached document "Guidelines for Writing Poems in Two Voices" to guide you in writing your own "poem in two voices" that reflects different realities for people in America.