ISJ November 2016: Reciprocal-relational teaching / culturally-responsive pedagogy in the Pacific Islands
Teresa Rishel & Deborah K Zuercher
Teachers and principals of international schools are challenged to provide curriculum that meets the diverse needs of their students. Ways to diminish those challenges are provided through the use of effective instructional strategies based on culturally responsive pedagogy and in fostering reciprocal relationships where students and teachers are cyclically engaged in teaching and learning.
Purposefully integrated into the teacher education program at the University of Hawai’i, teacher candidates are empowered to use these pedagogies as instructional interventions in their action research projects to facilitate indigenous place-based instruction. The context and importance of culturally responsive curriculum is acknowledged and the need to provide strategies grounded in local and indigenous wisdom, such as teacher-created WebQuests, ethnomathematics problem-based projects, place-based science explorations and expository writing.