The purpose of this study was to investigate the teachers’ perspective on the use of students’ home cultures in international transition classes within the Dutch secondary education system. The research explored the teaching methods and practices, as well as benefits and obstacles related to transculturing.
33 teachers of ISK classes (international transition classes) in the Netherlands were surveyed about the use of their students’ home cultures in class. The five dimensions concluded from the survey data were geared towards method content and approaches, obstacles, and benefits. Open-ended questions aimed at teacher’s satisfaction with transculturing in the classroom and additional needs for its implementation.
The results indicate that all participants use elements and aspects of the home cultures in their classes moderately frequently. The topics of food and festivities were used most often. Additionally, respondents experienced benefits from transculturing. The findings pertaining to obstacles were linked to lack of knowledge and lack of time. Results further indicated that the teachers wished for more implementation of home cultures and overall needed more home-culture related training, information and guidance.
Overall, the findings concord with the literature about dealing with interculturality in diverse classrooms. The moderately frequent use of transculturing may be rooted in a rather positive attitude towards the use of home cultures. In addition, the aforementioned frequency of incorporation corroborates with the teachers’ need for more training, information and guidance.
Key words: Home cultures, newcomer students, ISK classes, transculturing