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This personal critical reflection will present the significance of implementing

social justice perspectives in my teaching practice. This will meet the learning needs

of diverse students and promote awareness in teaching environments, such as

classrooms. The second segment of this critical reflection will demonstrate how

pedagogical theories influence effective teaching and enhances the learning

experiences of diverse linguistic students. Lastly, I will present how my teaching

practice will address issues of equity and diversity within learning environments.

It is important to implement social justice perspectives in teaching practices,

as equity is perceived by those students who are marginalised by the power

imbalances of society. Students who have been disregarded in education due to their

diverse background are often affected in society due to these power imbalances.

These students are often viewed as ‘different’ from the mainstream (Ferfolja, Diaz &

Ullman, 2015, p.3). By implementing the perspectives of social justice, both teachers

and students are able to identify the power imbalances within society and how they

can be resolved. It is important to consider the diverse learning practices for students

when making curricular decisions. By simply acknowledging one’s diverse

background, a positive student-teacher relationship is created where all individuals

with diverse backgrounds feel a sense of comfort. It is also important to implement

social justice perspectives within classrooms as students become more aware of

teachers acknowledging their beliefs and differences. Shipp (2012) shows the

importance of implementing Aboriginal perspectives in learning environments where

Aboriginal English is used in order to create high-level thinking and learning (p.20).

Open ended class discussions will then be generated allowing students to critically

engage with the perspectives of others. By implementing social justice perspectives,

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the participation of Aboriginal students has increased allowing students to voice their

opinion and increase their learning abilities (Shipp, 2012, p.21).

The concept pedagogy is effective to the teaching strategies of teachers. It

provides them with various teaching approaches in order to fit the diverse needs of all

students. Critical pedagogy is significant for teachers to implement in classrooms as it

allows students to challenge and undermine critical consciousness. This theory

influences and enhances the learning and teaching experience for all students as they

become aware of the precarious issues occurring within the world (Cho, 2013, p.1).

For example students with an Indigenous background may have different learning

views to the mainstream society. However, through the learning strategy of critical

pedagogy, students will able to identify the issues they face due to their ethnicity and

race. Cho (2013) states the importance of ‘critical pedagogy’ in classrooms as the

focus of students becomes comprehensive when social justices are mentioned in their

learning environments. Culturally Responsive Teaching is also a pedagogy which

influences and enhances the learning and teaching experience for students. It allows

students to recognise the significance of including ones cultural backgrounds through

the process of incorporating the skills and languages within learning spaces. By

implementing this pedagogical theory within learning environments, social justice

perspectives are introduced through the personal knowledge of students rather than

the teacher’s capability to address on the content of the curriculum (Rajagopal, 2011,

p20). Students who are diverse linguistic will be able to feel comfortable with the

class content and reach to their highest potential, allowing all students to enhance in

their learning experience.

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As Ferfolja, Diaz & Ullman (2015) demonstrate, it is important for pre service

teachers to be aware of the teaching differences of less fortunate students from social

justice backgrounds. By using pedagogical theories to address the perspectives of

social justice, the lesson will immediately be structured and related to equity,

diversity and its importance. Equity and diversity promotes the idea of accepting the

diverse characteristics of others individuals. As a future English teacher, I will modify

and consolidate my lesson plans where further learning opportunities on the

importance of equity and diversity will be addressed. By promoting the ideas of

equity and diversity to my teaching practice, students will be more acceptable of the

difference of other students. By simply teaching students about different cultures and

their differences, students will be exposed to not only the differences, but also the

challenges students from a social justice may face. Piland and Barnard (2006)

critically analyse the importance of multicultural education in the classroom,

demonstrating how teaching strategies is a guide to implementing the issues of equity

and diversity. I will address real life scenarios of social justice issues common in

today’s society, of refugee and Aboriginal students by providing students with images

in order for students to visualise the differences and challenges diverse students face.

This will generate open class discussion allowing students to discuss the social issues

that have affected their everyday life. I will also generate group work allowing

students to collaboratively work in diverse groups.

In conclusion, this personal critical reflection has allowed me to comprehend

the importance of social justice issues within Australian society, most importantly

within teaching environments such as schools and classrooms. By implementing

social justice perspectives within learning environments, students become mindful

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and responsive about the challenges diverse students face. As a pre-service English

teacher, I will implement learning strategies within my lessons in order to generate a

fair and equal learning environment, allowing students to be confident and reach their

highest learning potential. As social justice perspectives has always been an influence

towards my teaching practices, the different theories and theorists of pedagogy have

also assisted me in future management of diverse students.

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Cho, S. (2013). Critical pedagogy and social change (1st ed.). New York: Routledge.

Ferfolja, T., Jones-Diaz, C., & Ullman, J. (2015). The unseen half: Theories for

educationa practices. In Ferfolja, T., Jones-Diaz, C., & Ullman, J. (Ed.),

Understanding Sociological Theory for Educational Practices (pp.1-20).

Cambridge University Press

Piland, W. & Barnard, B. (2006) Multicultural education in the classroom.

Community College Journal of Research and Practice. 20 (1) pp.49-63.

Rajagopal, K. (2011). Create Success!: Unlocking the Potential of Urban Students

(1st ed., pp. 1-39). ASCD.

Shipp, C. (2012). Why Indigenous perspectives in school? A consideration of the

current Australian education landscape and the ambiguities to be addressed in

literacy teaching. 47(3) pp.20-24.