Friday, September 16, 2016

Cultural Diversity and Communication



Depending on the group of individuals I am associating with at the present moment determines how I communicate with them. When it comes to my family and friends I can be more informal with my communication and I can freely speak how I choose because that is who they expect me to be is myself.  When I communicate with colleagues and coworkers at the college I am more formal and professional, there are times when we are talking or discussion is taking place and a bit of informal communication can happen if we are not talking about things that need full on professional behavior.

With my students I am able to mix up the formal and informal communication when need too. As my students are getting familiar with me and I them they are opening up more and communicating more with me which in turn allows me to be more laid back and free with the communication. I have noticed that the African American students are more open and honest in their communication with me then my students who are not African American.  I think it is because they feel they can relate to me on a different level and that I am more understanding of their wants and needs as a student because I too am African American.  I do have a few students who are Hispanic and struggle with the English language, I do not push them or stress them out, I give them ample time to gather their words and address their concerns and issues with me as best they can. A lot of my Hispanic students prefer communicating over email instead of the phone. 

To be a better communicator takes being an effective listener and to put forth the Platinum Rule and treat others as you would like to be treated.  I believe if I keep these strategies and continue to be that effective communicator that I believe that I am, I should continue to have the successful relationships I have with my family, friends, coworkers and students who all work in the early childhood field.



8 comments:

  1. I agree with you and think that being an effective listener is a huge part of being a strong communicator. As you mentioned, it's also important to respect the channels in which others are the most comfortable with. It think that overall the key is just to be open....open to differences, open to strengths and weaknesses, and open to the acceptance of what makes us all individuals.

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  2. I understand your point when you feel your African American students might be more open and honest in their communication with you because you too are African American. I think we tend to feel more comfortable around those of similar background because they understand the struggle, cultural intricacies, and can relate better. I truly appreciate that you do no pressure the Hispanic students to or stress them out when they are struggling to communicate. Understanding their difficulty and cultural difference shows the communication efforts you are expending. By doing this, you are valuable in their experience as they grow and learn to communicate.

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  3. I also meant to ask, what grade do you teach?

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    1. Stella, I am the Coordinator for the Scholars for Excellence in Child Care program at Oklahoma City Community College. The students I refer to are the ones in my program that are getting their Associates Degree in Child Development. So I am referring to college students who work in the child care field getting their higher education.

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  5. Hello Comesha,
    I enjoyed reading your post, we had a little bit of similarities.
    I also agree when I was working in a school and the majority of the students were African American it made it easier for the children to speak with me I think that felt some kind of connection. Every culture has a different way of communication and I think when you see someone of your own culture you feel comfortable. But as a teacher we have to adapt I have a class that is majority women and children from Yemen and sometimes the communication can be challenging. But I try by always smiling, writing things down, and gesturing.
    I too wanted to know what age group you taught because you said that your students feel comfortable emailing?

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    1. Neymiaya, when I refer to students in my post and discussion, I am referring to my college students who participate in the Scholars for Excellence in Child Care. I am the coordinator for the program. My students are all child care professionals currently working and also working on their associates in Child development.

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  6. Comesha,
    Thanks for sharing! Most of us have more informal communications with family. I was speaking with a colleague the other day about the way our families function. Our children are great at school and when they come home to us, they show their true colors. We decided it was because our children receive unconditional love from us. They know that no matter what, we will love them even if they make us mad or say hurtful things.
    Joyce

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