Date Approved


Graduate Degree Type


Degree Name

Education-Instruction and Curriculum: Early Childhood Education (M.Ed.)

Degree Program

College of Education

First Advisor

Sherie Klee

Academic Year



Instructional strategies used by teachers impact student literacy performance. Students’ literacy skills can improve when teachers incorporate culturally responsive teaching practices that are also high-quality in nature. There is a particular need for these methods to be adopted in elementary classrooms in order to make learning accessible and equitable for diverse learners. Literacy skills are highly social and students’ backgrounds experiences are pivotal connections around which knowledge and understanding are constructed. In the Northwest Michigan region, as well as nationwide, performance disparities among cultural groups are reflected in literacy achievement data (“Grades 3-8,” n.d.), solidifying the need for change to occur. This project explores the intersection between culturally responsive and high-quality literacy practices and guidance for implementation. It combines professional development focused on curricular resources and student relationships with teacher coaching to further support utilization of culturally responsive literacy practices in the classroom. By incorporating culturally responsive literacy practices into their instructional repertoire, teachers can build trusting, reciprocal relationships with their students and foster academic achievement.