Bridging Cultures Between Home and School: A Guide for Teachers is intended to stimulate broad thinking about how to meet the challenges of education in a pluralistic society. It is a powerful resource for in-service and preservice multicultural education and professional development. The Guide presents a framework for understanding differences and conflicts that arise in situations where school culture is more individualistic than the value system of the home. It shares what researchers and teachers of the Bridging Cultures Project have learned from the experimentation of teacher-researchers in their own classrooms of largely immigrant Latino students and explores other research on promoting improved home-school relationships across cultures. The framework leads to specific suggestions for supporting teachers to cross-cultural communication; organization parent-teacher conferences that work; use strategies that increase parent involvement in schooling; increase their skills as researchers; and employ ethnographic techniques to learn about home cultures. Although the research underlying the Bridging Cultures Project and this Guide focuses on immigrant Latino families, since this is the primary population with which the framework was originally used, it is a potent tool for learning about other cultures as well because many face similar discrepancies between their own more collectivistic approaches to childrearing and schooling and the more individualistic approach of the dominant culture.
Contents: Preface. The Bridging Cultures Framework. Parent Involvement: Recommended But Not Always Successful. The Cross-Cultural Parent-Teacher Conference. Learning What Works. Teachers as Researchers. Conclusion: The Challenge of Coming Together. Appendix: The Bridging Cultures Project in Brief.