It would be interesting to learn if effective teachers such as yourselves used or still use so-called contemporary pedagogical practices to help your effectiveness in the classroom-- that is, group learning, social learning, diversity/multiculturalism instilled in the lessons and curriculum, etc., etc., or (alternatively) if you simply taught the students directly (eg what is now referred to as "drill and kill" and "teaching to the test" in ed schools), or some combination...
First of all, the expressions "drill and kill" and "teaching to the test" were probably invented in teacher's colleges in the 1950's and 60's to cast aspersion on more traditional teaching methods. I acquired my elementary and secondary credentials in 1967 and 1968. And to put it nicely, most of my teacher prep classes were plain "poppycock". Most of what I know about effective teaching I learned during my first three years in the trenches as a 4th grade teacher. The school was in a mixed neighborhood. About 1/3 of the students were non-English speakers. About a 1/3 had a parent in the military. I never had less than 36 students in the class.
At a conference sponsored by Johns Hopkins a highly honored teacher from an inner-city high school laughed when a progressive professor of education scornfully called direct instruction as "drill and kill". The high school teacher whispered to me, "Phrases like that are cop-on excuses given by crummy teachers."
The goal of multicultural studies and diversity appears to be the opposite of what it implies. All cultures and civilizations are equal, but some are more equal than others. [Aztecs capturing and sacrificing countless thousands of non-Aztec neighbors - that's okay. Spanish capturing and killing several thousand Aztecs - that's definitely not okay.]
What those who proclaim "Celebrate Diversity" seems to believe is that all civilizations (except Western) and religions (except Christian and Jewish) are good.
I taught in an upscale school for the last fifteen years before retiring. Seven of us teachers formed an informal club we called N.P.C. [Not politically correct], it was in reaction to several E.P.C. (Exquisitely politically correct] teachers and administrators on the staff. One observation noted by my fellow N.P.C. members was that the more experienced and effective the teacher was, the less she or spoke "teachereze". Here are some examples of teacherese: "the learner will discover" and "pedagogical studies imply".
As a teacher I use a variety of methods from direct instruction to team learning to individual exploration. And these strategies were not new when I first tried them in the late 1960's. Just because a teaching method has a new name, it does not mean its new. see and say > sight reading> integrated reading > total reading> whole language > Four Block > guided reading > ...
Whew! Does that answer your question? It's late, it's time for bed.