My passion is people, specifically teenagers. I believe I have something important to say and I believe this is the best profession to get that out there. I believe teenagers in this world are bombarded with messages from the media about who they are and what they should be that are absolutely false. I want my students to walk out of my classroom with their head screwed on their shoulders better than it was when they walked into my classroom. I want them to leave knowing one more thing about who they are, how they learn and how they can contribute to a world that seems to be falling apart at the seams. I want my students to have a sense of accomplishment while not being afraid to get the answer wrong. I want them to be confident in their learning and have a strong sense of common sense. I want them to see my deep respect and love for other people and take that attitude with them when they go.
I want to assist in creating critical thinkers who spend time wondering about everything from the nature of science to their environmental affect to the consequences of what they say and do. My personal goal is to show my students that I am passionate about people. I would hope they see my passion and develop their own passions.
I want my students to know that I love my subject area but I by no means, know it all. I want to give them useful strategies to be able to find information when they do not understand something. I want to help make a generation of people who know how to use technology to their learning benefit. The devices that we usually carry in our pockets or back packs, connect to a domain of information that is far too much for one teacher to handle. But if I can show them how to use technology to help them learn, then I do not need to pretend to know everything. Over the years, a teacher’s job has gone from providing answers to being a learning facilitator. In most cases, it is faster for students to “Google” something then to put up their hand and wait for the teacher. I do not believe that this makes my job obsolete, it just changes the job description. My job is to now develop curiosity, ask questions, teach them how to ask good questions and show them how to find good answers.
I have changed my thinking from being a “teacher of chemistry” to a “teacher of people“. @RickSeaman has encouraged me to think about my students as people, who carry their own sets of attitudes and beliefs about learning, teachers and the content that they are taught. I have learned that we need to first worry about their attitudes and beliefs towards learning before we can even begin to shove more information at them. As I have studied curriculum I have been focusing on the “goals of education,” they are:
Understanding and Relating to Others
Self Concept Development
Positive Life Style
Career and Consumer Decisions
Membership in Society
Growing with Change
What surprised me is that only one of those goals is directly related to content. If we only teach the basic skills of reading, writing, and problem solving we are missing %89 of the goals. I am excited to continue to learn about how to connect to my students as people, and touch on all the goals, while still covering all the content curriculum.
I want my students to do what they love and love what they do. These two phrases mean something special to me. To “do what we love” is to find something that makes us dance. Doing what we love is essential to our happiness and self awareness. To “love what we do” is very different. Every day and almost every hour we find ourselves in positions that we did not expect. I believe it is important to find joy and at the very least, contentment in what we are doing, even if that activity is not our first choice. Part of being content in what we do, is knowing exactly who we are and where we came from. Whether a student’s life has a rocky or solid past, it has shaped who they are and that makes them important. I want them to know that they are important.
I believe that every student can learn and find success in school if we create the opportunities for them to do so. When you know your students and are aware of what makes them tick, what helps them learn and what their needs are, that student will be successful if you act upon what you know about them. My supervising teacher in my internship called our students “little pups”. Most of them were not little, in fact, many of the grade 12 students towered above us. But she was careful to remind me that the wonderful thing about teenagers, is that they are still changing, they can still be vulnerable and they always need to know you care. After my experiences, I can not agree more.
Please do not leave this page without leaving a comment. I would love to know who you are, where you are from and what your own philosophies are. Do not be afraid to invest in who I am as a teacher! Leave your twitter name or website so I can invest in you!
This page is ALWAYS under construction. As I change so does my philosophy.