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PLAN Sheet: Cultural Influences on Early Language and Literacy Teaching Practices

En español Jun 28, 2016

Learn how important it is to be aware of our own attitudes, beliefs, and values with respect to how young children are supported in their early language and literacy development.

Credit: KPG Payless /

Key Messages:
Your work involves not only what you do but also how you are as you do it.
It is important to be aware of our own attitudes, beliefs, and values with respect to how young children are best taught and supported in their early language and literacy development.
Reflective practice is an important component of high-quality teaching.


reparing Yourself

  • What are some of the values and beliefs you have about how young children learn early language and literacy?
  • How might your cultural attitudes, beliefs, and values affect how you mentor?


inking with the Caregiver

  • Invite teachers to share with you.
    • Ways they believe young children best learn and should be supported in early language and literacy
  • Listen for ways that teachers
    • Recognize their own culture, attitudes, beliefs, and values
    • Demonstrate their ability to understand and respect cultural differences and child rearing practices


cknowledge Strengths & Areas for Support

  • Reflect back what you heard (content and feeling) and reach for clarity. Ask teachers what more they would like to learn about with respect to culture and reflection.
  • Highlight strengths. Observe aloud how you have seen teachers interact with children and families in culturally respectful ways.
  • Reframe teachers’ comments and concerns in ways that extend their understanding of the importance of reflecting on their culture (why they do what they do).


ext Steps

  • Brainstorm together ways teachers can integrate self-reflection as part of their teaching practices.
  • Identify resources that each of the following contributors might bring to the effort:
    • Teachers
    • You, as the mentor
    • Colleagues or community

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