Our common goal, our willingness to participate in a music reality, is also the key
to a workable and enjoyable crosscultural classroom management.
Students will bring in their own particular background, sometimes you may even find yourself completely clueless with regard to some students’ native language. One world, but so many ways of looking at it.
That does require a pedagogical approach in which diversity is is regarded as an obvious asset. Reliable research (cf T. Wubbels,2006 et al.) is clear about the importance of cultural differences and the way those differences interact with the teacher’s basic communicative style. What about your style?
Even basic instructions may differ as much as students themselves may differ.
Allow your instruction some moving space. Some people may need more guidance while others would like to work with some guided independence. Does your classroom exercise take into account those different needs?
Mind the gap
Not all stereotyping is readily recognizable. Our view is by definition Eurocentric, but that does not necessarily imply negative connotations. The trick is not to fall into the gap of self-righteousness, which, again inherited, may well be something typically European. How about your class room materials? Do they allow diversity to lead an active life? Not to mention your students themselves of course.
Mix wants to add to the debate that makes cultural diversity visible and appreciative. How sound the cliché may be, there is definitely some truth to it. It is only by getting to know our neighbours, their traditions, their customs and their cultural inheritance that we allow them to grow into their own identity, which is bound to be crosscultural. Everyone brings her or his personal inspiration along, personal stories may be a vibrant added element to your music classroom mix.