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Deconstructing Negative Beliefs, Attitudes and Expectations:
Viewing the World From Multiple Perspectives

The inability of educators to properly address the needs of those who have had a different journey than theirs is often not the result of an unwillingness to ensure excellence for all but precisely because of the differences in the experiences they bring to the teaching/learning process. A humorous but challenging and inspirational lecture, this presentation will engage participants in a journey of self-exploration and introspection that prepares them to serve effectively as educators in environments where all types of diversity is the norm.

Ordinary People Doing Extraordinary Things:
Achieving Excellence in the Context of Equity for All

Successful culturally relevant and responsive educational interventions are those that take into consideration the socio-cultural backgrounds, prior experiences, worldviews, as well as the learning, behavioral and communication styles of the clients served. Focusing on a strength rather than a deficit model, the presenter will identify effective methods for ensuring that we eliminate disparities in access to opportunities available to the clients we serve, particularly those who come to us differentially prepared to profit from what the system has to offer. This humorous but inspirational presentation will explore some of the interpersonal, institutional and instructional impediments that must be removed to ensure success in closing the achievement gap between these young people who are different from us in a variety of ways.

 

Them That Gots the Gold; Make the Rules
The World from the Perspective of Powerlessness

Although no set of characteristics describe everyone in a particular group, typically those who come from the culture of privilege and those who come from the culture of poverty experience very different realities that can shape how they may approach the environments in which they must survive/thrive. The poor, the culturally different, the disabled, the gifted and talented, etc. often experience numerous assaults to their self- esteem as they interact with societal institutions, often as a result of the efforts of well-meaning and caring individuals who are merely willing participants in a flawed system. Though many come to us differentially prepared to profit from what we have to offer, they often present challenges to the system because of the institution’s failure to recognize, understand and capitalize on the strengths that they bring. This presentation focuses on the power of educators to orchestrate learning environments that empower young people who have different learning, behavioral communication styles, world views or come from diverse cultures or the culture of poverty to take responsibility for their learning as they navigate a world that was designed primarily for their more advantaged peers.

 

People, Like Flowers, Should Be Appreciated
When They are in Full Bloom
The Challenge of Diversity in a Pluralistic Society

As our society becomes more diverse, it is essential that we adopt the vision necessary to create environments where difference is the norm that should be celebrated rather than merely tolerated. This presentation focuses on a strength rather than a deficit model in assessing and responding to the diverse needs of the populations we serve and highlights the institutional, instructional and interpersonal issues that impact our success in making learning accessible to all.

Trends, Like Horses are Easier to Ride in the Direction They Are Going:
The Challenge of Change

As our society becomes more complex and more resistant to change, there is a need to re-examine the assumptions we make and the strategies we use to function effectively in the rapidly changing global world of the 21st century. The challenge of change involves a complex set of factors that can inhibit or enhance our ability to achieve the vision we say we want. This presentation focuses on the critical elements required to ensure that we are realistic in our assessment of the changes we face and the demands it places on those who must provide young people and families with the academic and interpersonal skills necessary for success in school and society.

We Are the World

The promise of America...often far greater than its reality...
As our society becomes more diverse in many way, it is not only essential that we accept and accommodate the difference that individuals bring but also that we affirm those differences as strengths. The richness of the American experience is evident in our schools and classroom where diversity rather than homogeneity often is the norm. Effective educational institutions must learn to embrace the changing realities of our worlds and ensure that those who are responsible for educating our youth become increasingly more culturally aware and culturally competent. This presentation focuses on strategies for incorporating culturally relevant and responsive approaches into the educational service delivery in all aspects of the educational system while preserving the emphasis on excellence for all.

Touch Each Life…Touch Each Child..
Achieving Excellence in the Context of Equity for All

Successful culturally relevant and responsive educational interventions are those that take into consideration the socio-cultural backgrounds, prior experiences, world views, as well as the learning, behavioral and communication styles of the students we serve. Focusing on a strength rather than a deficit model, the presenter will identify effective approaches for ensuring that we eliminate disparities in access to opportunities available to our students, particularly those who come to us differentially prepared to profit from what the system has to offer. This humorous but inspirational and challenging presentation will explore some of the interpersonal, institutional and instructional impediments that must be removed to ensure proficiency for all in school settings where diversity is the norm.

 

 

“No Child Left Behind:
Building Fences Around The Mountaintop Instead of Ambulances in the Valley

There are significant factors that shape the advantaged and the less advantaged that must be taken into consideration as we design educational service delivery systems that are responsive to each of their needs. Whether one is successful will depend on whose values drive the system and whether an individual’s way of being fits what those in charge require. Strategies for working with diverse populations will be shared as well as a framework for addressing the unique needs of students in general and challenged and challenging populations in particular. With humor, discussion and lecture, participants will examine some real life situations that staff members encounter and get different insights from the presenter as well as colleagues about how to address problems that are consistent with a prevention-oriented, culturally responsive school and classroom environment.

 

Si Se Puede
Bilingual-Bicultural Approaches to Achieving Educational Equity

Those young people who are bilingual and bicultural are particularly at risk in a system where those who serve them are not knowledgeable about their language as well as their cultures. The ability to integrate the discrepant information that they receive from the many worlds in which they live is a daunting task that must be mastered even as they must acquire the skills necessary to be successful in school. This session will explore culturally relevant ways to better serve the bilingual/bicultural client so that they can acquire the skills needed without relinquishing their primary language and culture in the process.

 

 

 

 

Opportunities Denied: Promises Not Kept:
Reclaiming African American Youth

The fact that African Americans in general and African American males in particular are overrepresented in the disciplinary system, in special education programs for the emotionally disturbed and behavior disordered and ultimately in the criminal justice system is not surprising given the unique characteristics that many of these young people bring to traditional female-dominated, authority-oriented school and societal environments. In a school system where success is determined less by one’s innate ability than by their willingness to “play the game”, the search for identity may collide with the typical demands of achieving academic proficiency in the manner that educators desire. This presentation will focus on creative approaches to handling student behavior and instruction for a population that often gets more messages about their inadequacies than their ability to conquer any obstacles they must face.

 

 

 

 

Caregivers Need Nurturance Too!
Teambuilding as the Key to Success

All too often, in our zeal to provide quality services for our clients, we neglect the importance of taking care of ourselves and one another. The challenge of functioning effectively in an increasingly complex society and school system requires skills in developing creative responses to the conflicts that arise and individuals who can gain sustenance from the challenges they face on a daily basis. This presentation focuses on the interpersonal, instructional and institutional impediments to designing powerful learning communities and the attitudes and competencies required to guide the change process in a manner that challenges educators to work collaboratively to achieve the goals desired for the young people and families they serve.

You Don’t Tame The Angry Lion and Leave the Jungle Unchanged:
Culturally Relevant Behavior Management Strategies

In the educational system and in society at large, success is much more determined by one’s ability to play the game” as it is by one’s innate ability. This interactive session focuses on the skills educators can provide to young people to help them face the challenges of a world that sometimes give them more messages about their inadequacies than their ability to conquer any obstacle they face. Participants will explore strategies for working with challenging and challenged clients with a particular emphasis on those who present school adjustment problems. Using a philosophy of inclusion rather than of exclusion, the presenter will share individual, classroom and systemic issues as well as structures that emphasize preventive rather than punitive strategies for decreasing powerlessness and minimizing dysfunctional, disruptive or socially unacceptable behavior.

Every Shut-Eye Ain’t Sleep:
Culturally Relevant and Responsive Strategies
for Serving Culturally Different Families and Communities: A Strength Model


With a particular emphasis on those who are non-traditional in their approaches to family involvement in school, strategies for minimizing their feelings of powerlessness and inadequacy ,building confidence and securing commitment to the shared goals of the school and home will be explored. This presentation will focus on culturally relevant, responsive and creative approaches to family engagement that utilizes the skills that challenged families have to support the educational process. Strategies for building confidence and securing commitment to the shared goals of the school and home will be shared.

 


“Every Shut Eye Ain’t Sleep”:
First and Forever: Families as Equal Status Partners in the Educational Process

Creative and culturally relevant approaches to family engagement that utilize the skills that a diverse array of challenged and challenging families bring to the educational process cannot be employed if we do not understand how families’ personal journeys have shaped their current behaviors and philosophies. This presentation will focus on empowering families to be effective decision-makers with their children and with school staff in a constructive and collaborative manner by highlighting the strengths they bring rather than their deviation from the norms that educators expect.

 

 

 


We Need To Be The Change We Want:
A Conversation with the Presenter

This interactive session with the keynote speaker will explore in greater depth some of the themes shared in the thought-provoking opening presentation. Approaches for removing the impediments to achieving equal access to educational opportunities for the diverse populations we serve will be shared as well as a framework for creating learning environments that truly value the strengths that our students bting. Come prepared with any questions, challenges and real life situations that you encounter and explore concrete strategies that designed to create culturally responsive school and classroom environments that maximize proficiency for all.


Mary Montle Bacon, Ph.D.

Images of a Culture
1055 Lakeview Drive, Hillsborough, CA 94010-7320
Office: (650) 342-0621 Cell: (650-281-9445 (650) Cell: (650) 281-9445
mbacon6538@aol.com


Web Site Designed by: Sherman Rutledge Jr. sherman@brainpower.ws