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Yustika Rahayu

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7A
CHAPTER 9
TEACHER-STUDENT CULTURAL CONGRUENCE
A. Cultural Congruence
The environment of a classroom is created from the extended cultural fabric of
society, including the values, beliefs, patterns of interaction, and ways of organizing and
demonstrating knowledge (Lee and Fradd, 1996).
Hence, understanding cultural settings of classroom life is imperative if
comprehensive and conclusive findings are to be achieved. Therefore, when teacher and
students share the same language and culture, they tend to develop cultural congruence.
Through this book give some information that different degree of cultural congruence
in a language education settings (ESL) in English teaching learning processes.
B. Study Setting
Data Collection
The data were obtained through observation of a speaking lesson in a young ESL
classroom in India. The class consisted of 28 Indian ESL learners. In term of proficiency the
group of students belongs to primary school level. You also can see the data in the table
below.
Participant
Nationality
A young ESL classroom in 28 learners

English Proficiency
Primary school level

one of primary school in (all of them are Indian


India.

learners)

Procedure
The data were obtained through observations in which verbal interaction was
videotaped. The video were than transcribed.
Results

The result of the transcription was then analyzed using the framework developed by
Suherdi (1994). In this ESL classroom, the A-initiated exchanges are dominant (69%).
Meanwhile, in relation to DK1-initiated exchanges had 14%, K2-initiated exchanges had
15% and K1-initiated exchanges had 17%.
Discussion
The fact A-initiated exchanges were dominant (69%) is not surprising because the
class employ simple method through which the teacher enables learners use or speak English
in real life contexts by using realia and picture in teaching. ESL class used many kinds of
object and picture that might invite different opinions. In the lesson, there was no form of
anomalous exchange. At the ESL class, the relationship between students-teacher was close
and intimate and due to the relatively close and intimate relationship, students were
encouraged to give follow-up reaction. In his research, Suherdi (2009) said that while EFL
students tended to repeat what the teacher said, the ESL students did not seem to feel
comfortable with that. But in this ESL class in India, students tended to repeat what the
teacher said and students participating as well as the sustained answer of students in which in
his trying to provide complete answers, the students in which in his trying to provide
complete answers, the students were helped by the teachers clues and help. It is clear that
different cultural and biography setting-lead to different interaction pattern which in turn
establish different levels of cultural congruence. Therefore, shared hierarchical,
authoritarians interactional style. Whatever the context, cultural congruence has given basis
for teachers to establish interaction patterns that they believe to be the best way to have their
students successfully to learn English.
Conclusion
The result of this study is presented in which students-teachers cultural congruence is
being investigated in terms of their effects on students learning. The study involved an ESL
teaching programs. In the program, both the teacher and the students are Indian. The result of
the data analysis shows that the more congruent the culture of the teacher and the students,
the easier for the students to participate in the teaching-learning process.
The more the teacher and the students share the cultural background, the higher the
level of cultural congruence they can establish. Zeichner (1995) also emphasizes that in order
for a teacher to implement the principle of cultural congruence, he or she must have
knowledge of and respect for the various cultural traditions and languages of students in the

classroom. Teachers need general sociocultural knowledge about child and adolescent
development; about second language acquisition; about the ways that socioeconomic
circumstances, language, and culture shape school performance. Finally, teachers should
develop a clear sense of their own ethnic and cultural identities in order to be able to
understand and appreciate those of their students. This will help them understand how their
own cultural biases may influence judgements about student performance and obstruct
students' ability to learn.