Purposeful Writing In The Elementary School Classroom: Incorporating Multicultural Children's Literature Into The Writing Curriculum

Course Number: EDU 5620 C09
Instructor: Laura Terry, B.Ed., BA.P., and P.G.C.SE.
Location: Online via Canvas
Dates and Times: Monday, November 5, 2018, through Monday, January 28, 2019
Credits: 3 graduate credits
Tuition: $925

Note: Course payment or purchase order of $925, payable to RRWIB, is due at the time of registration. A purchase order number can be entered into the online registration form. Credit card payments can also be made online. Please mail check to the Castleton Center for Schools, Stafford Academic Center, Castleton University, 251 South Street, Castleton, VT 05735.

Course Description

This course focuses on the importance of incorporating purposeful writing through the integration of multicultural children's literature. By gaining a sense of appreciation and acceptance for all individuals from diverse cultures, learners become genuinely self-motivated and engaged in these strong feelings! These feelings are the roots for learning opportunities where learners can freely and with purpose, communicate and connect their own thoughts, ideas, and feelings with those from other diverse cultures and backgrounds. Writing gives our learners a healthy and amazing outlet for expressing these strong feelings with purpose! 

“Learning how people from other cultures do similar things in different ways can help children gain a sense of acceptance and appreciation for diverse cultures.” (Higgins, 2013)

"This course, Using Multicultural Literature in your Writing Curriculum, has really taught me to think carefully about the text that I am selecting during my integrated writing block... Carefully selecting multicultural literature can help students relate to stories, to one another, and to me. It helped my students feel a deeper level of connection and understanding. This helps build a classroom culture of respect, trust and belonging. I have worked so hard to develop this classroom culture, but until we were having rich discussions and writing assignments using multicultural literature did I truly achieve this with all of my students, especially my students of a diverse cultural background. This discovery was very powerful for me and my students."
- K-5 Academic Interventionist

"By taking this course I have come to have a greater inspiration to educate myself in as many new authors, stories, cultures and traditions as possible... It has enriched me not only as a teacher, but also as a student... I was constantly reminded in taking this course how fun it is to be a part of learning something new and how powerful a children's book can be...they have so much more to give and students are so capable and eager to analyze and understand beyond the basic read through. As a result my teaching in the future will have a more culturally intentioned focus, and I myself am more excited to get back in the classroom and keep learning with my students!"
- 1st and 2nd Grade Teacher

Course Goals & Objectives

Learning Outcomes:

  • Build a learning environment and community which can successfully incorporate multicultural children's literature into the Writing Curriculum 
  • Understand the significant benefits of multicultural children's literature in the elementary school classroom
  • Engage in wonderful writing opportunities, first-hand, that utilizes multicultural children's literature 
  • Learn to incorporate these amazing writing opportunities with your students in your classroom
  • Reflect and respond to weekly readings that will enrich your capabilities of implementing a purposeful Writing Curriculum using multicultural children's literature 
  • Observe your learners freely and with purpose, communicating and connecting their own thoughts, ideas, and feelings with those from other diverse cultures and background
  • Look on with amazement and wonder as your learners take pride in their own writings...full of genuine feelings and purpose!

Required Texts

You will also need to purchase the following multicultural children's literature books:

Sosu's Call by Meshack Asare
Sebastian's Roller Skates by Joan de Deu Prats 
No Mirrors In My Nana’s House by Ysaye M. Barnwell
The Girl Who Loved Wild Horses by Paul Goble 
Tea Cakes for Tosh by Kelly Starling Lyons 

There will also be articles provided by the instructor.

For additional course information

Laura Terry
(802) 849-2225 or (802) 324-4678

For additional registration information

Bethany Sprague
(802) 468-1325

Register online now!