Culturally Responsive Teaching and The Brain

Culturally Responsive Teaching and The Brain
Promoting Authentic Engagement and Rigor Among Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students

Foreword by Yvette Jackson

© 2015 | 192 pages | Corwin

 A bold, brain-based teaching approach to culturally responsive instruction


The achievement gap remains a stubborn problem for educators of culturally and linguistically diverse students. With the introduction of the rigorous Common Core State Standards, diverse classrooms need a proven framework for optimizing student engagement and facilitating deeper learning


Culturally responsive pedagogy has shown great promise in meeting this need, but many educators still struggle with its implementation. In this book, Zaretta Hammond draws on cutting-edge neuroscience research to offer an innovative approach for designing and implementing brain-compatible culturally responsive instruction.


The book includes:


  • Information on how one’s culture programs the brain to process data and affects learning relationships
  • Ten “key moves” to build students’ learner operating systems and prepare them to become independent learners
  • Prompts for action and valuable self-reflection


With a firm understanding of these techniques and principles, teachers and instructional leaders will confidently reap the benefits of culturally responsive instruction.

"An essential, compelling, and practical examination of the relationship between culture and cognition that will forever transform how we think about our role facilitating the learning of other people’s children—and our own children!

—LaShawn Routé Chatmon, Executive Director

National Equity Project


“All students can and will learn at high levels when provided the type of instruction described in this book. This work calls us to action by mandating that we move beyond looking for student outcomes that rely heavily on the regurgitation of memorized facts to applying the information learned to new situations.”

—Kendra Ferguson, Chief of Schools

Kipp Bay Area Schools, Oakland, CA

Foreward by Yvette Jackson
About the Author
Part I: Building Awareness and Understanding
1. Climbing Out of the Gap
2. What's Culture Go to Do with It?
3. This is Your Brain on Culture
4. Preparing to Be a Culturally Responsive Practitioner
Part II: Building Learning Partnerships
5. Building the Foundation of Learning Partnership
6. Establishing Alliance in the Learning Partnership
7. Shifting Academic Mindset in the Learning Partnership
Part III: Building Intellective Capacity
8. Information Processing to Build Intellective Capacity
9. Creating a Culturally Responsive Community for Learning
10. Epilogue
Key features
(1) builds teacher capacity for addressing the needs of underserved students by presenting high-leverage instructional strategies that are informed by the latest findings in neuroscience and cognition, as well as culturally-responsive instruction.

(2) organized around ten "key moves" to build students' "learner operating systems" and preparing them to become independent learners who are "ready for rigor."

(3) written in a teacher-friendly style, the book is designed to be interactive and includes an array of checklists, tools, templates, and reflective prompts for use by teams and individual teachers.

(4) grounded in an extensive research base and the authors' evidence of success in implementing these practices in hundreds of schools. 

Sample Materials & Chapters


Table of Contents

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ISBN: 9781483308012

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