While there are different personal reasons why teachers devote their lives to education, almost all are united by the desire to impact the lives of learners (Waterval et al., 2017). I decided to become a teacher in order to positively impact the lives of as many students as I can. I believe that besides teaching, teachers have to serve as mentors, confidants, and friends of students in order to equip them with the needed skills to succeed in life. I have several skills and qualities that employers might look for in a prospective teacher.
For instance, I have excellent communication skills that will be essential when interacting with other teachers, students, and parents. I am also tech-savvy. Thus, I will be able to effectively incorporate appropriate technologies in the classroom. Besides, I am a patient and passionate individual who cares about improving the overall lives of students. It is important for me to develop an educational philosophy because it will help me to remain focused on my role as an educator. Beliefs of teachers about education significantly affect their method of instruction.
I believe students learn best when they are offered an entry to learning. While people may have similar experiences when learning, certain learning approaches are more effective than others. I believe that lesson planning should incorporate all the different ways learners use to learn effectively. For instance, students who gain understanding by watching demonstrations and discussing the content should be provided with such learning experiences. According to Lynch (2016), students may have varied approaches to learning but their preferences may overlap. After appreciating that learners are unique and make sense of learning content differently, teachers can develop successful evidence-based supportive measures. My ideal learners are not only curious but also confident about their abilities.
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Moreover, they demonstrate the ability to learn independently and are not afraid of facing challenges. I believe the role of learners is to be active participants in the learning process. That is, they must assume responsibility for their actions and choices and realize that they are accountable for their success. In this regard, they must exhibit a wide range of responsible behaviors such as academic integrity and honesty, punctuality, and respect towards their peers and teachers. They are also liable for identifying, developing, and implementing plans targeted at accomplishing their academic goals.
I believe one of the primary roles of a teacher is to motivate learners to develop the desire and ability to learn. Besides teaching and preparing learners for examination, teachers must aspire to inspire learners to acquire the appropriate skills needed for them to succeed both in the classroom and in out-of-class activities (Waterval et al., 2017). I am also convinced that educators are tasked with ensuring that learners are enrolled into the most appropriate classrooms in order to effectively meet their needs and aspirations. This goal can be realized through creating a supportive and safe learning environment, adhering to regulations and requirements governing their practice, as well as promoting their professional development.
I intend to establish a classroom environment that is conducive to learning through several key strategies. The first strategy is using the physical space in the classroom to create an atmosphere that supports participatory learning. I will attain this by designing a seating arrangement that will be based on my instruction methods. I will also ensure that wall space in the classroom is decorated by relevant and interesting learning materials. Next, I will encourage my learners to work in teams and define the rules and routines of engagement in the classroom. In addition, I will endeavor to demonstrate to my learners about how I care about their education and overall well-being in order to create a communal environment where students are not afraid to approach me or consult their classmates.
Besides, I will employ several strategies to manage student behavior. For instance, I will, in consultation with my students, formulate rules governing student conduct and ensure that they are applied consistently. Furthermore, I will punish students without favor. Applying punishment inconsistently may promote disrespectfulness and stubbornness among students (Waterval et al., 2017). Building trusting and caring relationships with students is an incentive for good behavior. Moreover, I will reward good behavior as a way of discouraging cases of indiscipline. I believe the curriculum should provide insight and direction to both teachers and students. In this regard, it should be flexible and amenable to change in order to reflect the needs, abilities of learners, as well as the expectations and aspirations of teachers.
According to Waterval et al. (2017), a curriculum provides teachers with a working framework for introducing content to learners. Therefore, it should be organized around learning objectives from credible academic sources. It is these objectives that will help learners understand the major concepts and themes that characterize their life as students. Implementation should focus on the recognition of learners’ personal experiences, goals, and competencies. Learners have unique learning needs which are impacted by their desire to learn and the goals they will achieve through the learning. One teaching strategy I would use to convey information and facilitate the learning process is differentiated instruction. It is an instruction technique that tailors the process of teaching towards meeting the individual and unique learning needs of students (Waterval et al., 2017). Another instruction strategy I will utilize is inquiry-based learning. This technique relies on student investigation and the teacher only plays the role of a facilitator, guider, and delegator.
In the educational process, establishing partnerships with parents and families improves students’ academic performance due to the shared responsibility of dealing with problems both at home and at school. Such partnerships lead to the communication of clear goals and this motivates towards the achievement of better academic outcomes. Benefits of these partnerships for students include increased school attendance, high graduation rates and consequent enrollment in colleges, improved social skills, improved behavior, and better relationships with parents, and the development of high self-esteem among learners as well. Furthermore, I believe such partnerships are important in promoting the overall well-being of the learner. Studies show that involving parents in the education process as well as engaging community resources can significantly address the health-related needs of learners (Waterval et al., 2017).
My underlying purpose as a teacher is to effectively facilitate students through the learning process with the intention of developing them into responsible members of society. In this regard, I believe good teachers should demonstrate certain core values in their practice. These values include honesty and integrity, instilling a sense of hope and urgency in the learners, encouraging continuous learning, and promoting mutual respect and responsibility in the learning environment. These are the values that I will emphasize in my practice to ensure the overall development of the learners. The education philosophy that is closely aligned with my beliefs and values is progressivism. This philosophy is based on the premise that learning is an outcome-based process that does not simply involve the acquisition of learned information (Lynch, 2016).
Progressivism emphasizes the values of student exploration and experience which are also part of my proposed curriculum implementation. In a progressive learning environment, teachers act as facilitators and guides in the learning process just like in the teaching strategies I proposed. Modeling is one support I have for the teaching approaches I selected which are inquiry-based learning and differentiated instruction. I believe modeling will help me to point out the appropriate behavior expected of the students during the learning process.
Overall, I believe effective teaching focuses on the overall development of the learner and that is why I think my student-centered philosophy will give me an edge over other candidates. The process of learning is only effective when it is intended to meet the unique needs of every learner. What is more, I believe that encouraging cooperation among learners and showing them that you care about their education motivates them to engage proactively in learning. It is for these reasons that my proposed curriculum ensures that teaching instruction is tailored towards meeting the specific objectives of students. I also understand that teaching demands core values such as patience, passion, and integrity which are necessary in propelling students towards excellence in academics and life in general.
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