Culturally Responsive Instruction Leaves No Child Behind:The Story of Juan, a Pacific Island Special Needs Student

Authors

  • Catherine Eileen Stoicovy University of Guam
  • Richard Fee University of Guam
  • Julie Fee University of Guam

Keywords:

multicultural instruction, culturally responsive instruction, retelling, Guam

Abstract

The purpose of this qualitative case study is to explore the use of retelling as a culturally responsive literacy strategy for Juan, a Pacific Island (Chamorro) special needs student on the island of Guam. Data were collected from the following sources: (1) participant-observation (2) fieldnotes (3) audiotaped recordings of students’ oral retellings (4) audiotaped interviews with students (5) audiotaped interviews with classroom teacher, and (6) samples of students’ written retellings. Results of the study suggest that retelling helps to bridge the dissonance between home and the school. Retelling, congruent with the Chamorro tradition of storytelling, is a natural way of learning for Chamorro students. Moreover, retelling in a small group setting is compatible with inafa’maolek, a core value of Chamorro culture that means helping each other in an agreeable fashion. Based on Juan’s productive academic performance and appropriate behavior during the retelling sessions, the following two issues warrant consideration: a reevaluation of his diagnosis of ADHD and further exploration of the use of culturally responsive instruction to scaffold his academic performance.

Author Biographies

Catherine Eileen Stoicovy, University of Guam

Catherine E. Stoicovy is an associate professor of Reading at the University of Guam in the School of Education.  Her current academic interests include culturally responsive literacy instruction for Pacific islanders, second language acquisition, literacy learning for Generation 1.5 students, scaffolding literacy with instructional technology, and online learning at the postsecondary level.

Email: [email protected]


Richard Fee, University of Guam

Richard W. Fee is an associate professor in Special Education in the School of Education at the University of Guam. His research interests include mainstreaming/inclusion of special needs children in the regular classroom in developing nations, transition in special education and education of deaf and hard of hearing children.

Email: [email protected]

Julie Fee, University of Guam

Julie Fee is an assistant professor of Special Education at the University of Guam in the School of Education.  Her current academic interests include collaboration between regular and special education, and the inclusion of special needs students in the regular classroom. She is also active in promoting community service for individuals with special needs.

Email: [email protected]

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Published

2012-06-11

How to Cite

Stoicovy, C. E., Fee, R., & Fee, J. (2012). Culturally Responsive Instruction Leaves No Child Behind:The Story of Juan, a Pacific Island Special Needs Student. International Journal of Multicultural Education, 14(1).

Issue

Section

Articles (Peer-reviewed)