ERIC Number: ED256173
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Improving Conversational Engagement in the Culturally Diverse Classroom.
Adger, Carolyn Temple
A study of communication in a culturally diverse first grade classroom focused on one discourse device, conversational repair, and its use with one kind of conversational difficulty, protest sequences, or arguments. The data collected concerned the children's use of either non-response or conversational engagement following a fellow student's protest, and the evolution of this use in the course of the school year. The non-response frequency curve across the school year suggests that protesting is constrained by a solidarity factor, affected in this case by the classroom seating arrangement and changes made in it. When solidarity is low, as at the beginning of the year or after a seating change, protest is not called for, but when solidarity is high, protest occurs and conversational engagement increases over non-response. It is suggested that if the solidarity concept is extended to include shared culture, it is apparent that cross-cultural conversations are less eligible for the repair they are likely to require because the participants lack shared culture. The implications for culturally diverse classrooms include the suggestion that teachers group children in a way that they will spend a lot of time working and talking with children from culturally contrasting backgrounds, to establish ties enabling them to repair conversations. (MSE)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Ethnography in Education Research Forum (6th, Philadelphia, PA, March 1985).