Autobiographies in Preservice Teacher Education: A Snapshot Tool for Building a Culturally Responsive Pedagogy
Keywords:culturally responsive pedagogy, literacy, preservice teachers, autobiographies, multicultural education
Many scholars have made the call for teacher educators to provide experiences that can lead preservice teachers to embrace a culturally responsive pedagogy. We investigated the use of brief autobiographies during an internship as a tool (a) for preservice teachers to examine their multidimensional culture; and (b) for teacher educators to assess preservice teachers' developing understandings about cultural responsive pedagogy and then further design curriculum to enhance these understandings. Using qualitative methods, we analyzed the preservice teachers' (N=24) autobiographies and an interview with the professor of this course. Based on the findings of this study, we suggest teacher educators need to develop experiences and opportunities that will enable preservice teachers to reflect on how culture impacts teaching and learning behaviors. Therefore, preservice teachers will be better prepared to teach all students.