SEL :: Diversity

Social and Emotional Learning

What is Cultural Proficiency

Cultural Proficiency is the set of values and behaviors in an individual or set of policies and practices in an organization, that create the appropriate mindset and approach to effectively responding to the issues caused by diversity.  A culturally proficient organization interacts effectively with its employees, its clients and its community.  Culturally proficient people may not know all there is to know about others who are different from them, but they know how to take advantage of teachable moments, how to ask questions without offending, and how to create an environment that is welcoming to diversity and to change."  Kikanza Nuri-Robins, Randall B. Lindsey, Delores Lindsey, Raymond Terrell, 2011 Culturally Proficient Instruction.  3rd Ed. (Corwin)


"The concept of diversity encompasses acceptance and respect. It means understanding that each individual is unique, and recognizing our individual differences. These can be along the dimensions of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, age, physical abilities, religious beliefs, political beliefs, or other ideologies. It is the exploration of these differences in a safe, positive, and nurturing environment. It is about understanding each other and moving beyond simple tolerance to embracing and celebrating the rich dimensions of diversity contained within each individual." Rock, M. (1999, August 26). Definition of Diversity. Retrieved from

Diversity: Teacher Professional Development

Diversity: Mentor Texts

SEL: Social Awareness

Diversity: Quotes

“Diversity: The art of thinking independently together.” -Malcolm Forbes


“I used to think that anyone doing anything weird was weird.  I suddenly realized that anyone doing anything weird wasn’t weird at all and it was the people saying they were weird that were weird.” -Paul McCartney


“To be one, to be united is a great thing.  But to respect the right to be different is maybe even greater.” -Bono


“We need diversity of thought in the world to face the new challenges.” -Tim Berners-Lee


“Diversity doesn’t mean black and white only.” -Henry Louis Gates


“Strength lies in differences, not similarities.” -Stephen R. Covey


“Be yourself, because the people who mind don’t matter.  And the people who matter don’t mind.” -Dr. Seuss


“Accept your differences and be proud of them.” -Mawi Asgedom


“We are all different and that’s beautiful.” -Karen Salmansahn


“In diversity there is beauty and there is strength.” -Maya Angelou

Diversity: Lesson Plans & Activities

Diversity: Videos

Diversity: TED Talks

Embracing Diversity

“Diversity means there are a lot of different kinds of things. Different makes of cars, flowers, trees, colors, animals, houses, and so on. There is diversity in people like different skin colors, hair colors and shades, eye colors, shapes of our bodies, and even the size of our faces. Not just our appearances are different, we are also different in gender, language, culture, age, nationality, disability, religious beliefs, political views, sexual orientation, marital status, educational levels, and so on. Some people are different physically while others’ differences cannot be seen.” (