Helping Immigrant Children Succeed –A Look through Research, Experiences, and Practical Solutions

Research output: Book/ReportBookpeer-review

Abstract

Globalization influences almost all aspects of education. Children from the different cultural background need caring teachers that understand the role of culture in human development especially brain structure. The new research findings recognize the significant social influences on the brain in the form of protective nurturing and stress-buffering effects by parents and acquisition of language, cultural values, and skills that shape the very structure and function of much brain (Barrrasso-Catanzaro & Eslinger 2016, p108). Lam (2006) suggests looking at culture as fluid not static. We should look at how individuals develop and assume particular culture practices and affiliations through their history of engagement in multiple, changing, overlapping, and conflicting communities. (p.216)<br>In my research, I look how to help immigrant children to be successful. I have been publishing in this area for most of my professional career. After joining Central Michigan University, I developed graduate course Culturally Responsive Early Childhood Programs and added multicultural aspects to all courses I taught because globalization influences almost all aspects of education. <br> United States has always been a nation of immigrants, but according to the MPI (Migration Policy Institute 2018), in the last three decades nearly 30 million of immigrants, both authorized and unauthorized came to the USA, making this country more racially and ethnically diverse than ever. Immigrant children live in dual-culture environments, and they bring to their classrooms rich experiences grounded in different languages, traditions, and experiences. Teachers, in order to honor the cultures of immigrant children and their parents, must address their needs in developmentally and culturally appropriate ways. Helping Children Succeed examines current research on the educational development of immigrant children and the unique challenges that they, their parents, and their teachers face. In 12 chapters, each written by a different author and using a variety of analytical methods the book offers an overview of immigrant children’s experiences and ways in which teachers and other caregivers can support them in the process of acculturation. A feature of this book is that all but one of the coauthors are immigrants, thus the connection to our writing is not just academic; our lived experiences complement our research. <br>In addition to providing an overview of current research, the authors share their individual research projects that have led to new perspectives. Through case studies and surveys with teachers and parents, they have brought the new ideas and recommendations into the life and journey of immigrant children, their parents, teachers and other professionals.<br>The central argument of this book is that immigrant children will be successful if culturally and developmentally appropriate practices are applied in teaching them. The chapters of this book give an in-depth investigation into handling different challenges such as negotiated identities, transition to a new culture, and different learning styles as well as the role of parents and teachers in helping immigrant children. <br>Each chapter presents practical solutions and suggestions for the teachers, parents, school staff and community that interact with children daily.<br>
Original languageEnglish
StatePublished - Feb 28 2020

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