Discrimination occurs against underrepresented and misrepresented cultures in the United States of America. Hate crimes, racism, and stereotyping are not only against adults but also students in the educational system. These actions are causing division within our nation. There is a movement for transforming the classroom into one that is culturally inclusive for everyone. These Culturally Responsive Teaching (CRT) methods can help to unite our nation by celebrating diversity. One very effective method to achieve this is by using multicultural literature in classrooms as a way for students to see themselves as if looking in mirrors, understand their peers as if looking through windows, and empathize with other cultures as if stepping through a sliding glass door into the other culture (Bishop, 1990).
Arab Americans too often are experiencing discrimination at the same or worse levels than other underrepresented and misrepresented cultures. The goal of this study was to find quality books by and about Arab Americans as multicultural literature is an effective means for creating a culturally inclusive classroom. My first step was to locate any and all books I could find that were written by or about Arab Americans. Then using specific parameters, I narrowed my findings to list only the quality literature I found within the last ten years. These findings are listed for teachers to use and access with ease.
While reading these books in the classroom, it is important to initiate conversations with and among the students. Therefore, I created a list of general guiding questions that pair with the literature for teachers to use in their classrooms to get their students talking and thinking about the multicultural books they are reading. These discussions can help move classrooms into ones that celebrate individual cultures, embrace diversity, and instill empathy among the students.
Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
College of Community Innovation and Education
School of Teacher Education
Ritts, Sarah, "Quality Multicultural Literature as Windows, Mirrors, and Sliding Glass Doors for Arab American Students in the Elementary Classroom, (2012-2022)" (2023). Honors Undergraduate Theses. 1413.