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6 Steps to Greatness

The Floor: Understanding Culture

Culturally responsive teaching (CRT) is a research-based approach that makes meaningful connections between what students learn in school and their cultures, languages, and life experiences.

Cultural identity shapes our beliefs through experiences which helps us reflect on our actions. When we learn about the different cultures of others it builds empathetic relationships before making assumptions.

So, what does this mean for Ben?

When Ben’s identity is recognized in learning spaces, he feels affirmed for who he is, where he comes from and how that has shaped his values.

Bare Feet: Feeling Sensations

Engaging sensory motor integration through play and cooperative learning supports positive behavior, motor skills and focused attention.

So, what does this mean for Ben?

Ben experiences sensory stimulation through the sounds, smell, tastes, sights and touch in his environment. Some of these are calming and regulating to his brain and body, where others may trigger reactions causing distraction or dysregulation.

By drawing Ben’s attention to the different stimuli in his environment, he is able to explore what works best for his needs.

Creating Safe Spaces

When kids feel safe in a learning environment, their stress response system feels secure with consistent and predictable routines.

What does this mean for Ben?

Ben bounces from a variety of activities and settings throughout the day-home, school, childcare, after school activities and weekend experiences that it is difficult for him to establish a feeling of safety, trust and belonging that affirms his individual identity.

Signature practices including ways Ben is greeted and welcomed into the environment, interactive opportunities for discussion and collaboration with peers and a reflective closure when transitioning from one activity to the next are structures that provide predictable routines.

These help Ben feel confident in who he is in the spaces he engages in with consistency and structure.

The Right Fit: Having Needs Met

Differentiation is key in learning environments as every child has individual needs. When kids feel loved, this primes their brain for learning.

What does this mean for Ben?

Ben is a unique individual with unique needs, areas of growth and of course strengths and assets.

When we know who Ben is and he knows himself, we can meet him where he is and can feel successful to take risks and grow!

Time to Choose: Defining Core Values

When kids can think critically and have insight into their values, they are affirmed in who they are and how they wish to show up in their relationships.

What does this mean for Ben?

As Ben begins defining what he values, he can connect this to his daily actions, interactions and decisions in order to ensure that they align to his values.

He begins to discover his true sense of self and how he wants to contribute to his relationships and his community.

Walking Your Walk: Aligning Intentions to Actions 

When kids are confronted with choices, they are can successfully reflect on how their intentions and actions align with their identity and their values.

What does this mean for Ben?

There will be moments where Ben is unsure of which path to take and what the best choice for him should be. As he grows in staying true to his core values and a strong self awareness, he can reflect on what connects to what is most important to him and how this will impact his life.

Ben begins to speak up for himself and others, find his voice and express agency for change in the world!

Take the First Step

As an educator for 10+ years, I understand how difficult it is to balance all life’s challenges; parenting, teaching, supporting your own family and connecting with those of your students and their families.

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