“A Kindergarten Teacher Like Me”: Social-Emotional Development in Early Childhood Education

Topic: Education Theories
Words: 854 Pages: 3

Summary of Article

The article A kindergarten teacher like me: The role of student-teacher race in social-emotional development focuses on the relationship between racial and ethnic backgrounds of students and teachers in the social-emotional development of children. Learning environments in the United States of America are becoming substantially varied in race and ethnic origin (Wright et al., 2017). Given these population shifts, numerous scholars and practitioners have stressed the importance of listening closely to how instructor diversification may lower ethnic differences in educators’ judgments of pupils of color’s interpersonal interactions.

This paper aims to critically explore the effects that teachers of color have on the development of minority students’ academic and social-emotional growth. Additionally, the essay discusses the opinion presented by the authors of the article and their implications on classroom instruction.

The article applies the most current nationally representative sample and examines whether elementary students’ social-emotional assessments differed and whether they had a teacher who shared their racial and ethnic group. Additionally, it discovered that engaging an educator of the same ethnicity did not influence tutors’ judgments of learners’ ability to internalize problem behaviors, interpersonal skills, learning techniques, and self-control. Conversely, children whose professors’ race and ethnicity resembled their own rated manifesting actions more positively. Finally, the findings of the article are explored in light of their ramifications for school-based disciplinary practices.


From the study, the researchers majorly came up with three research findings. First, educators of color may be a successful strategy to combat externalizing habits, according to this study’s findings. Latino and African American learners comprised 45% of the school population at institutions that documented expulsions under punitive rules, but they accounted for 56% of the dismissed kids (Wright et al., 2017, p. 96).

This study implies that selecting teachers who understand the kids’ multicultural perspectives could lessen the disparity in administrative policies’ influence on pupils of color. Second, according to this study, students’ conduct at the beginning of school is influenced by their instructor’s race compatibility (Wright et al., 2017). It is thus possible to construct surroundings that are most conducive to student conduct in primary schools, given a specific student population and instructional resources, using this knowledge.

This study recommends that modifications be adopted early in the school year so that the possibility for academic achievement can be strengthened from the beginning of school education. Lastly, it is recommended that all tutors receive intensive training to understand children’s varied cultural origins better (Wright et al., 2017). Teacher training and practice development initiatives may not sufficiently incorporate culturally sensitive practices that mirror the language patterns, vocalizations, verbiage, and body language that minority children are used to. I agree with the research findings made by Wright et al. (2017) on the effects of the ethnic background of teachers on the social-emotional development of children of color in the United States. The study mainly focuses on the impacts of educators’ racial backgrounds on students of color.

The research focuses more on the student of color since, over the years, they have been racially segregated in schools and institutions, and this affects their socio-emotional development. Mattison et al. (2018) discovered that social-emotional capabilities allude to children’s capacity to handle their thoughts and feelings, conduct, externalize habits, develop positive interactions with others, and demonstrate positive behaviors in class. Mattison et al. (2018) found that African American elementary school students had lower self-control, less favorable methods of studying, and a higher frequency of antisocial behavior than White kindergarteners. Thus, this can have a long-lasting effect on the early childhood education of elementary school children.

The article’s finding on the training of teachers to improve the understanding of students’ cultural background is essential in the emotional development of children. Moreover, school-wide ethical reinforcement supports that prioritize culturally sensitive approaches have been found to have a positive impact on kids’ exacerbating behaviors (Mattison et al., 2018). It is essential to tackle these discrepancies from a legal perspective since research indicates that social-emotional assessments at the kindergarten level indicate a variety of future predictions, including accomplishment in subsequent classes, academic achievement, and future earnings. However, the research is biased in selection since it refers to only learners of color, yet socio-emotional development occurs across all children regardless of their racial backgrounds.

Classroom Implications

From the point of view of society coincidences, instructors of color may be able to use their knowledge of the disjunction between learners’ home culture and the mainstream tradition at school. Thus, this will enable me as a teacher to justify a broader scope of plausible behaviors or resolve any misdemeanors in a way that does not inflame situations.

If cultural synchrony does assist minority students in following the common cultural awareness, we will anticipate more constructive evaluations of ethnic minorities by educators of color, particularly regarding antisocial behavior. Furthermore, the study results provide concrete conceptual and practical options for addressing concerns of culture, ethnic background, and equality in the development of conducive classroom settings as our country’s student population evolves. Therefore, as a teacher, I will be aware of the multicultural classroom, hence diversifying appropriate methodologies for all students’ inclusion in instructional activities.


Mattison, A., Raffaele Mendez, L. M., Dedrick, R., Dickinson, S., Wingate, E., & Hanks, C. (2018). Early elementary teacher ratings of behavior as predictors of grade retention: Race, gender, and socioeconomic status as potential moderators. Psychology in the Schools, 55(10), 1171-1187. Web.

Wright, A., Gottfried, M. A., & Le, V. N. (2017). A kindergarten teacher like me: The role of student-teacher race in social-emotional development. American Educational Research Journal, 54(1), 78-101. Web.

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