The idea of multiculturalism in our schools is not a new one. School districts all over our country have been "teaching" some sort of multiculturalism in the classroom for quite some time now. However, as a student, I have always seen any study of multiculturalism as an add-on. We had Black History Month, Spanish Heritage Day, and a Chinese New Year celebration. These activities often required some sort of project work. I had felt that sometimes the celebration of these ethnic holidays did not really provide a true learning experience. We were not really provided with the historical and cultural significance of the events.
Recently, however, in good part because of International Education I have seen a great deal of advancement in how multiculturalism and its values are being taught and recognized. We have ascended to a point where we are able to realize that different cultures have much to offer and to celebrate in today's classrooms. The idea of "culture" is no longer just a topic to be studied, with an accompanying educational video. We are now being encouraged to recognize the values of diversity that make up our notions of culture, and more precisely the notion of multiculturalism.
By the year 2020, one half of all students in the United States will be people of color. It is extremely important that our schools continue to understand and make positive adjustments in their classrooms that will encourage students of my generation, regardless of ethnic or cultural group, to develop our multi-faceted talents to the fullest. We have to become a generation of young people who will not only recognize and understand the new face of our country , but also a generation that will celebrate our diversity and will become empowered by our differences.
International Education Week has helped the educational community of teachers, students, and parents understand that we are no longer a nation of homogeneous citizens who will all learn and act in the same way. The information and values exposed by International Education has...