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My Philosophy of Education

My philosophy of education is currently in its early stages of development.  I have yet to be in a classroom as a teacher, so much of my philosophy of education and teaching is based from my personal experiences as a student.  I hold the belief that in order to be a successful teacher, one must have a passion for helping and nurturing people.  As a teacher I will be caring for young children and helping them learn basic academic, social, and intellectual skills to prepare them for later life experiences: going to college, making a career, and general life milestones.

I believe first and foremost that education is the way teachers are able to instruct and guide students to become lifelong learners.  In early education and elementary school, I believe that children learn naturally through their thinking and as a teacher, it will be my responsibility to help students.  I believe that education aids in a student’s intellectual growth, while also contributing greatly to their personal, social, and global growth in order to be adequately prepared for growing older.

After reading chapters 3 and 4 in the Foundations of Education textbook, I have found that my personal beliefs have bits and pieces in common with a few education pioneers.  In general, I believe that learning occurs through experience and hands-on engagement. In order to enforce my beliefs, I need to have a classroom environment and activities that stimulate interest.  Much like the Swiss psychologist Jean Piaget who believes that “children construct their concepts about reality by actively exploring their environment” (Ornstein, Levin, & Gutter, 2001, p. 119), I feel that through exploration a child comes to learn on their own.  I feel that while instruction is important to teach children what they should know, the natural curiosity of elementary children should be nurtured so that they may come to their own conclusions about learning.  My ideas about “hands-on” learning also reflect the philosophy of education of American John Dewey. Dewey believed that students learn through experience. The classroom should be set up with activities and concrete objects that the students regularly interact with.  Dewey believed that teachers should use “group activities, collaborative learning, and process-centered strategies in their classroom.” (Ornstein, Levin, & Gutter, 2001, p. 114)  I believe that there should be limits on explicit instruction from teacher to student in the classroom. If all of elementary education consisted of a teacher telling students information and students relaying that information right back through only testing, there is no room for personal development and learning.  As I mentioned above it is also crucial for students to develop their own unique personally academically and socially.  By implementing hands on group activities and hand-on strategies in the classroom as proposed by Dewey, the student will be able to grow in many more ways than just intellectually.

As a teacher my goal for students is to help them develop their own intellectual ability.  My purpose is not to tell students how to do things, but to show them through modeling how to do things for themselves.  It is my aim to make students engaged in the learning process; I want them to be emotionally invested in their education and strive to learn for themselves, not because a teacher told them they should learn. I want students to desire to learn for themselves.  As a teacher, I believe that it is just as important to develop my own education throughout my career.  In my opinion, education is an on-going process that does not stop the moment someone graduates high school or college, or even retiring from a career.  Every day we are constantly analyzing our surroundings and using past experiences to shape our understanding with the world around us.  The classroom, especially the elementary classroom, needs to be a fun, safe, and stimulating environment.  I feel that it is necessary for a student to have a personal connection with a lesson in order to fully grasp the main idea.  In the classroom and throughout developing lesson plans, my goal is to ensure that I am creating fun and engaging lessons.

I am still a student myself in the MEd program at UMW.  In my opinion, education is an ongoing and lifelong process and I am still learning many things everyday.  My philosophy of education is a work in progress, however once I continue taking classes at the university level to prepare me to become a teacher my ideas will develop further.  Once I am actively engaged in the classroom environment I look forward to implementing my philosophy in the classroom and take part in helping young students learn find their own beliefs and knowledge in a safe and intellectual environment.

References  

Ornstein, A. C., Levine, D. U., & Gutek, G. L. (2011). Foundations of Education   (11th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth CengageLearning.

 

 

 

~ by hgluchow on .

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One Response to “My Philosophy of Education”

  1. I thought your reflection was really enlightening and you seemed to have a really well thought out philosophy. Wanting your students to be responsible for their own learning and “be emotionally invested in their education and strive to learn for themselves,” is a great concept that I think more teachers should try in their classrooms. It seems that a lot of teachers just lecture and make students memorize material, without teaching students how to enjoy learning.