Article: Looking Inward: Reflecting on My Cultural Competence as an Educator Our

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Article: Looking Inward: Reflecting on My Cultural Competence as an Educator Our debate in class covered the difference between Cultural Competence and Cultural Humility pretty well. There are a few ways that you can look at comparing the two, one being that Cultural Competence is the short-term, faux-understanding of what someone’s culture is and how you can relate to them. While there are positives to this approach, I would say the mindset associated with it is incorrect in the value placed on one’s individual knowledge and the feeling of having culture “Figured out”. Cultural Humility is, as it sounds, an approach began in humility and aims to be a lifelong search for meaning in someone’s culture. This tends to be a more existential way of approaching the topic of culture and diversity. I would compare the two with competence maybe being a habit change whereas humility is a lifestyle change. The article speaks directly to cultural capital and what experiences we are bringing to the table. The introspection that she brings places her in that category of cultural humility, her reflections are not just based on attempting to provide equality and checking boxes, she is bringing the work home with her and facing the truth. “. In doing so, I was seeking ideological clarity in understanding my personal beliefs, their origin, and the effect they may have on the students I teach” (Duncan, P 82) Video: Cultural Competence: What Does it Mean for Educators? Cultural Competence is the general understanding of the cultural identities that are represented by a certain group of people. As an educator, you must have a baseline understanding of who your students are, the challenges that they face, and where they are coming from. The struggle may be the mindset that you fully understand the culture of your students and aren’t open to learning and understanding more. This will hinder you when the culture of your students varies slightly, or when you’re introduced to a new group that you don’t fully understand. There needs to be a mindset change where you’re morally obligated to try to be open to any and all cultures, shifting from focusing on one group to being a person who is open and respectful to all. One-piece not addressed is when we study cultures we know we may be facing this can lead to us having bias when we’re first introduced to our students thinking that we know and understand them based on our knowledge but we don’t truly. We also must be careful of the Messiah complex, when we go into these classrooms thinking we are going to save these marginalized students rather than helping them to shine in their own way. Video: Cultural Humility Melanie Tervalon begins the video with the understanding that Cultural Humility is the next additional framework when it comes to the entire goal of understanding and being able to speak equality/respect towards our students. Where the distinction begins; cultural competence begins with what you know whereas cultural humility begins with what you don’t know. It is centralized in lifelong learning and critical reflection. It is not just acknowledging differences in power but taking action to mitigate these differences and create equity and equality. Changing the verbiage and practice of being and having Culural Humility means were asking questions and seeking to understand rather than being competent, where that could come with the thought of being all knowing.

 

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