Give Chapter a title
When one is discussing the ethical classroom,
it is important to firstly understand whatCM1 is meant by the word ethical or ethics. What does one mean by
this? Well, taking the word ethics, this can be defined as ”standards of
behavior” (Personal Finance Society 2016) and also ”conforming to accept
standards of conduct” (Webster 2017). It can be said that ethics ”comes from
society and collective beliefs and values of its citizens” (Bellisario 2017).
Values and morals are categorized as two words that fall under the word ethics.
Values ”help us to know what is more important and what is less important
which helps to guide us when making decisions” (Futterman 2015). Nevertheless,
morals are inclined to be broad. They are principles we impose on each other
either in the home or in the classroom. ”We judge others by their morals
rather than their values” (Futterman 2015). Ethics can also be classified, as
stated by Futterman, as a division of moral philosophy and it involves
”defending and recommending concepts of right and wrong conduct” (Futterman
2015). Weinstein believes
that there are ”five basic principles of ethics that are common to all
faiths” (Weinstein 2017). These include to be loving, to be fair, to respect
others, to do no harm and to make things better. It is important to remember
that these values are classified as cross-cultural they are accepted among all
groups. ”These values are cross-cultural and expected among all groups of
people” (Weinstein 2017). Weinstein believes that these values should also go
past the partitions of protection or sanctuary and also that these values
should be taught and expected in the homes of students and the classrooms too.
Focusing on these five basic principles, which are common to all faiths, Weinstein
believes that ”hurting others is unavoidable and that it is important to
minimize that hurt” (Weinstein 2017). By making things better, one should know
that difference between hurting and helping. In an ethical classroom, students
and the teacher should ”be part of a community where people trust one
another” (Weinstein 2017). In an ethical classroom, relating to Weinstein’s
five basic principles, the teacher and the students should respect one another
in their differences, either being of a difference race or coming from a
cultural background. The teacher should always be fair in how they punish a
student in the ethical classroom. The teacher should not favourite students. Be
loving, Weinstein believe that this is ”having compassion for others” (Weinstein
Weinstein’s five basic principles, James Banks discusses the five dimensions of
multicultural education. Banks developed the ”five dimensions of multicultural
education to help educators see that content integration is important” (Banks
1998). The fist dimension is known as content integration and the second is
known as knowledge construction. Banks states that ”the knowledge construction
process moves to a different level because here teachers help students to
understand, investigate and determine the implicit cultural assumptions and
frames of reference and perspectives of the discipline they’re teaching”
(Banks 1998). The third dimension focused on is called equality pedagogy, where
Banks states that ”here teachers change their methods to enable kids from
diverse racial groups and both genders to achieve” (Banks 1998). The fourth
dimension is known as prejudice reduction. Here, Banks believes that ”all
teachers should work to reduce prejudice in the classroom” (Banks 1998). The
fifth and final dimension is ”empowering school culture and social culture”
(Banks 1998) where Banks discusses to look at not just the individual
classrooms but ”at total school culture to see how to make it more equitable.
In Banks work, it is discusses about how these five dimensions of multicultural
education will help to create a society where many individuals will take part in
democratic institutions and to work to make it a more balanced society. I think
this is important because it also would link in to creating an ethical
classroom with students who are from different cultural backgrounds.
ETHOS states that ethics ”is the foundation
of our human relationship to ourselves and the world around us and the purpose
and role of ethics has always been the preservation of human being as a person,
human dignity, and the conditions for leading a good life as it protects and
nurtures humanity of our existence, both in ourselves and in others around us,
and practice of dialogue is essential” (ETHOS 2014). It is believed that
ethics can be related to almost everything as ethics can be described an
established rules that are accepted by and supported by a group of individuals.
Secondly, one must be able to understand what
the term ethical classroom means, before one can create an ethical classroom.
”An ethical classroom is a place where you and your students will look forward
to being everyday, a place of peace, a place of learning and a place of
personal and spiritual growth” (Pittella and Rotstein 2017). An ethical
classroom can be described as a classroom environment where the students and
the teacher are looking forward to being everyday. It is a place that is
peaceful and, of course, a place of learning with both spiritual and personal
growth. It was also stated that ”the
ethical classroom, like a good home, is ideally a place for learning, sharing,
trust, nurturing, personal and spiritual growth and peace” (Pittella and
Rotstein 2017). Classrooms that create such feelings surrounded by those who
flourish ”are built around a consciousness and respect of ethical concepts”
(Pittella and Rotstein 2017). As a teacher, by encouraging ethical behavior to
students in the class it affects the students’ insights of how other students
around them are acting or behaving. In society today, there are many influences
that students in school can take on board to be, to them, morally correct where
in fact they can be morally wrong. As a teacher, we need to insure that
students in the classroom are learning ethically in a safe, fair and fun
environment and it is vital to ensure the clear understanding of moral right
and wrong. Pittella and Rotstein state that supporting beams of a teachers
ethical classroom are beneficence, veracity, sense of self, justice, and
non-maleficence ”beneficence (goodness), veracity (truth), sense of self and
non-maleficence (the responsibility to do no harm) are the supporting beams of
an ethical classroom” (Pittella and Rotstein 2017). ”Ethics and ethical behavior are no
less prevalent or important in education” (Futterman 2012). When creating an
ethical classroom, there should be concentration on the student’s knowledge,
abilities and their skills. When creating an ethical classroom, one should
challenge students to grow, develop and learn. Vincent Prohaska, who holds a
PhD in educational psychology in University of Chicago, states that ”creating
a climate of ethical behavior begins when instructors design courses to improve
students knowledge, skills and abilities this courses should challenge students
to learn, grow and develop” (Prohaska 2012).
One can say that
it is extremely important in encouraging ethical conduct in a classroom and
that by doing this, it leads to successful teaching. Regan believes that
”encouraging ethical conduct in the classroom is critical to successful
teaching” (Regan 2012). It is very important to teach a correct and ethical
behavior in a classroom. Regan believe that ”ethical conduct requires that
everyone in the classroom practice respect and well being as a central
motivation for learning” (Regan 2012). In terms of an ethical classroom, a
teacher can create a classroom community. One that is anticipated to behave
appropriately in such a way that the student will expect other classmates to
behave also, in the same respectable manner. This is simple but at the same time,
it is also powerful in creating a policy upon which the teacher and the
students in the classroom can strongly undertake and accomplish objectives each
day. ”Classroom practices are about more than school rules” (Pittella and
Rotstein 2017). One could agree with this statement. Every classroom will have
a set of rules, for example a teacher may use a class contract, or basic rules
of the school for example no running in the halls, no pushing and no chewing
gum. However, in an ethical classroom, the teacher should go past the rules to
the fundamental explanations why certain actions are essential for the greater
good of all students. Pittella and Rotstein give an example of this. ”No
pushing could be translated to ”we do not touch one another without permission
and never in a way that could cause harm” (Pittella and Rotstein 2017). Each
decided instruction or policy for daily communications in ones classroom
encompasses life lessons that teachers’ students will hold onto.
Every subject in
the classroom can be improved when the teacher includes ethical implementation.
For example, in the subject English, a reading lesson that had previously
concentrated on appropriate literature according to age, characters, themes and
vocabulary words will all take a new explanation in your ethical classroom.
This can be done age appropriately to facilitate to any teachers classroom
group. A deliberation assisted by the teacher can help students to recognize
when and where within the reading material ethics ideas and linguistics are
found. These lessons can offer students more than just knowledge, but also food
for thought. In an ethical classroom, students can leave with ”stimulation of
the mind, practical skills and the knowledge of ethical language and ideas that
will transcend their lives” (Pittella and Rotstein 2017).
The Code of
Professional Conduct for Teachers, developed by the teaching council in 2012,
it takes into consideration the other external factors that come into play
within this profession such as parents’ involvement, availability of resources,
economic and societal factors, and implementation of new legislation. The Code
is the standard to which all professionals registered with the Teaching Council
must adhere. This Code guides the teacher and instructs them on how to navigate
to job both appropriately and professionally. Four main points of the Code are
crucial components of being a teacher, as only by upholding all four of these
virtues can a teacher be an ethical educator of students. These four points
link in with what is involved in creating an ethical classroom, or what
creating an ethical classroom means. The Code emphasis that firstly, for
teacher to have an ethical classroom they should have respect for various
different spiritual, cultural and political values. ”Teachers uphold human
dignity and promote equality and emotional and cognitive development” (The
Teaching Council 2012). Secondly, teachers should care of the pupils in their
classroom. ”Teachers practice is motivated by the best interests of the
pupils/students entrusted to their care” (The Teaching Council 2012). Thirdly,
teachers should show integrity through their commitment to their work and to
their responsibility. ”Teachers exercise integrity through their professional commitments,
responsibilities and actions” (The Teaching Council 2012). Lastly, teachers
should inspire trust in their students and their parents, colleagues and the
wider public. ”Teachers relationships with pupils/students, colleagues,
parents, school management and the public are based on trust” (The Teaching
Council 2012). One can agree that these four key points that are mentioned are
critical in creating an ethical classroom.
Looking at the
ETHOS project, this is an advocate for moral education at pre-primary and
primary levels as research has shown that it is at these levels are the most
important phases in which to indicate development of respect for others,
tolerance, interculturality, compassion, amongst others. In terms of ethical
education, this ”encompasses a wide variety of topics and approaches and has
to be sensitive to its multi-dimensional and deep anthropological nature”
(ETHOS 2014). ETHOS targets educators and offers lifelong learning
opportunities focused on ethical education. Various different intelligences are
taken into account by ETHOS. For example: verbal/linguistic,
logical/mathematical, visual/spatial, musical/rhythmic, bodily/kinesthetic,
naturalist, intrapersonal, interpersonal and existential are all listed as
identifiers of the various different intelligences that are taken into
consideration when discussing creating an ethical classroom for students. This
research will focus on the ethical classroom and how one creates a successful
ethical classroom with students who are from different cultural backgrounds. Do
the known strategies to create an ethical classroom work and apply to students
who are from different cultural backgrounds? As one can say that various
students with different cultural backgrounds in a classroom shape perceptions
Banks, J., A. (1998) Educating Citizens in a multicultural society, ”The Five
dimensions of multicultural education”.
Bellisario, D., P. (2017) Where do Ethics come from? online,
available: https://pagecentertraining.psu.edu/public-relations-ethics/ethical-decision-making/yet-another-test-page accessed 19/12/17.
ETHOS (2014) A Manual for Teachers and Educators to Support the development of
Educational Materials and tools for Ethical Education.
Futterman, L. (2017) Beyond the classroom: the ethical importance of ethics in education online,
available: www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community.miami-dade/community-voices/article17030966.html accessed 20/12/17.
Pittella, R., Rotstein. P. (2017) Creating an ethical classroom online,
available: http://teaching.monster.com/benefits/articles/3522-creating-an-ethical-classroom accessed 19/12/17.
Prohaska, V. (2012) Encouraging students’ ethical behavior online, available: www.apa.org/ed/precollege/ptn/2013/05/ethical -behaviour.org accessed 20/12/17.
Regan, M. (2012) Modeling ethical conduct in the classroom online, available: https://www.edutopia.org/blog/ethical-conduct-classroom-margaret-regan accessed 20/12/17.
Personal Finance Society (2016) What does being ethical mean online,
available: http://www.thepfs.org/membership/a-quick-ethics-recap/what-does-being-ethical-mean accessed 19/12/17.
The Teaching Council (2012) Code of professional conduct for teachers, 2nd.
Webster, M. (2012) Ethics Definition online, available: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ethic accessed: 19/12/17.
Weinstein, A. (2017) Ethics in the classroom: what you need to know online, available:
https://www.education.com/magazine/article/cheating-ethics/ accessed: 19/12/17.