The Experiences and Perceptions of African American Males and Their Elementary Teachers
Erwin, Kimberly Danielle
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This phenomenological research investigation explored the African American malesâ perceptions of activities and learning opportunities that take place in the classroom and how these experiences influenced their academic success. Using the theoretical lens or perspective of critical race theory (CRT), the researcher examined the capital second-, third-, and fourth-grade African American male participants bring into the classroom setting and how this capital relates to the structure of the social and academic realm within the school environment. Additionally, the researcher examined the instructional practices of these studentsâ teachers and how these practices matched and supported the perceptions of this group of students or possible when the instructional practices indicated a disconnect or mismatch to the studentâ s academic or social needs. The researcher utilized four salient questions to examine these issues: (1) What are the perceptions/interpretations of African American male students and their teachers about their school experiences?; (2) How do the teachers interpret their own teaching practices, particularly with regard to these children?; (3) How do the needs of African American male students influence the teaching practices of their teachers; and (4) How do their perceptions and interpretations mirror each other and differ? The following four themes emerged from an inductive analysis of data: (1) teacher and student perceptions of their learning experiences, (2) teacher practices, (3) teacher needs superseded those of the students, and (4) misaligned perceptions and interpretations. Implications for K-12 teachers and administrators as well as for teacher educators are included, and future research questions are proposed for research scholars.
- Doctoral Dissertations