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My philosophy of Education

My philosophy of Education

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Published by Michael Prants
An essay on my philosophy of education including areas of curriculum, parent involvement in schools, aim of education, role of the teacher.
An essay on my philosophy of education including areas of curriculum, parent involvement in schools, aim of education, role of the teacher.

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Published by: Michael Prants on Aug 03, 2009
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12/09/2012

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Philosophy of Education
Statement of My Philosophy of Education
INTRODUCTION
Why become a primary school teacher? Being a primary school teacher means, I have theopportunity to be a role model in my students’ eyes. I have the privilege of looking after andshaping the future generations of our societies. When I was a young boy growing up in school, Iloved it; I had such amazing teachers who connected with me and work with my strengths,motivating me to strive for the best I could be. Now I want to be those teachers, and fulfil my roleas a teacher to shape my students’ lives, through providing an educational experience which helpsthem to become successfully functional members in society, able to work and survive on their own. I want to encourage parent and community involvement within all schools, as I believe aninterested parent is a supportive parent, thus helping my students to grow both at school and athome. Lastly I want my curriculum in terms of the syllabus to provide students with flexibility. Iwant to be able to run with students’ interests and ideas and provide the necessary skills neededwithin the schooling years, and achieve academic results.
OVERALL FRAMEWORK OF PHILOSOPHY
When thinking about my overall philosophical perspective, I find that when I’m in the classroommy style of teaching changes, depending on the children I am faced with and the schoolenvironment I am forced into. I feel that to simply use one method of teaching would make me anineffective teacher in most aspects of the classroom, as I believe we as teachers need to be able toadapt and change our styles to suit the children’s need and the teaching context. I realise we asteachers can’t always have our way, so we need to be flexible, and I would happily change theway I operate, to benefit my students and maximise their learning. As E. Heyman a highlyexperience primary school teacher once told me “If you are aware of and understand your students’ needs, you can adapt an approach to teaching that best serves you, your students andtheir parents, and your employer.”
 
(personal communication, October 29, 2008). However myunderlying reason for why I adapt myself to these varying situations is the same. Upon reflecting back at my philosophy of teaching at a deeper level, and talking about it to others, I’ve come torealise I am a strong progressivist. Although I believe in using what ever methods to achievesuccess with my students, it is for the reason that I want them to grow and become part of agreater cause, that I am a progressivist.
 
AIM OF PRIMARY SCHOOL EDUCATION
I believe the aim of primary school education is to prepare the child for the world we live in. Thismeans teaching them; good morals, healthy eating habits, their rights, life skills (i.e publicspeaking and cooperation), academic skills (i.e reading, writing, counting) and lastly worldhistory. Education should assist students to grow, ideally grow into law abiding, world changingcitizens who will create a better future.I believe I feel this way because of my upbringing. I was given every opportunity in life to learnand to do what I desired (i.e play sport and go to youth group). By giving students opportunitiesto experience life they learn the essence of what it means to live; to be happy, to be healthy, tohelp others, to feel safe and loved. Faith and morality is a big part of it to. I was born into aChristian family where both my parents were community orientated, and believed that educationwas the key to creating somebody. As the saying goes “A teacher can make or break a person”,and that was exactly what happened to me. I had wonderful teachers who fostered my love tolearn and to grow, helping me become who I am!Academic learning (cognitive development) helps dispel ignorance that causes intolerance insociety. Morally stunted people are more likely to be found among the ignorant than theintellectually able (Smith: 1974) This means that if we provide our students with a wholeeducation, including good morals and life skills, and prepare them for the world in which we livein, we can reduce the number of intolerant people in our society, and create a smoother runningsystem. Our students need to learn to live in a ‘multi-cultural, multinational, multi-faith world’(Hickling-Hudson & Ferreira: 2004). Primary education provides students with the framework of fundamental knowledge that they will need, to function in society (Boyd, Pudsey & Wadham:2007), as life is a neverending journey of lessons. In order to appreciate the present, intellectualskills must be developed to understand the past, helping us to gain knowledge for the future. Thisis why the teaching of world history is so important, because without a record of our pastmistakes we would inevitable walk down the path of destruction again! (Crabtree: 1993
)
Therefore education needs to prepare the child, for the future. As spoken by the wise former Holroyd mayor Dr J. Brody “A world where society doesn’t remember their mistakes, a worldwhere our citizens couldn’t make the right decisions, because they didn’t get a sufficienteducation, a world where the law is disregarded… can you imagine this? Complete anarchy!”(personal communication, October 31, 2008). This is why the aim primary school education is to provide all these skills, because without any of them, we risk our future!Evidently my position on the aim of primary school education is a progressive one, as I truly believe we as individual are born with a role to play. As well as living for ourselves, we live for others, to better our society and prosper as a race. For education is the basic process by whichsociety maintains, and improves itself! (Lawson & Petersen: 1972)
 
THE ROLE OF THE TEACHER 
I believe the role of the teacher is to be everything! A teacher should be a hero to those children, arole model they look up to, but a teacher should also be a parent, a friend, and a life coach. Thismeans being a disciplinarian when needed, but it also means being caring, and someone thestudents can turn to for help. Similar to my belief on the aim of primary school education, I believe it’s a teacher’s role to provide that education. To nurture and watch their students grow!I developed this belief due to various factors; firstly my mother is a teacher and growing up witha mother who is a teacher was hard, but in the end very rewarding. While at first she might haveseemed annoying always asking if I had any assignments or if I needed help, she was alwaysthere when I did need someone. She always provided support! Secondly my schooling experiencewas very supportive to, all my teachers helped me to grow. Teaching me important skills in lifelike reading and writing, although I struggled to read and I was a shocking writer, being a lefthanded male. But they never gave up! Lastly witnessing my practicum teacher, has further led tocementing my belief. She is a wonderful young woman, who knows each of her individualstudents’ circumstances. Whether they have family problems, learning difficulties or haveimmense potential but are just not motivated. She knows all this because she cares about her students, and wants to prepare them for life just like she was prepared in her schooling days!
I believe humans are social individuals, and that society is an organic union of individuals(
Dewey: 1897), therefore the role of the teacher is to provide a well rounded education toindividuals to support our society. Schools are a place where certain information is to be given,where certain lessons are to be learnt, and where certain habits/morals are to be formed (Dewey:1897). Therefore the teachers who are employed by these institutions should be teaching their students the skills and knowledge necessary to survive in, and improve the society we live in.Additionally regardless of the character of any class, a teacher should adapt their approach to suitthe needs of the students’ i.e being direct, and strict if the class needs to be pulled into line, aslearning is the business of the classroom life, and that should be the ultimate goal (Barry & King:1988).Evidently teachers need to be adaptive and play various roles, so that they can achieve their underlying universal goal of educating. What we educate our students about is the question?Fenstermacher & Soltis (1992, p. 22) say the executive approach improves student achievement“not because it has been shown to be a particularly good way to educate human beings, but because it works well in rooms of 600 square feet that are filled with twenty-five young people,more than two-thirds of whom, if given a choice, are likely to choose to be somewhere else.”. I beg to differ, how can Fenstermacher & Soltis (1992) say the executive approach improvesstudent achievement, if it’s not a “particularly good way to educate human beings”? Achievementis the action of accomplishing something of worth, by getting students to rope learn and performfor exams, you have achieved nothing! True achievement is a test of time, like the survival and progression of a race!Clearly my belief towards the role of the teacher is a progressive one, as I feel the teacher has aduty to provide and structure an education that will allow students to grow and develop intosuccessful members of our society.

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