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Philosophy of Education

Philosophy of Education

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Published by Kelly Ann

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Published by: Kelly Ann on May 07, 2011
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04/04/2014

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Kelly GaffneyPhilosophy of EducationEntering into the rewarding field of teaching is something that I am highlyanticipating as I enter into my final field experience before graduation. Although the prospect of taking on my own classroom with the responsibility of molding the mindsof my young students is something that causes me some anxiety, I am confident that Iwill stop at nothing to meet the needs of every student. I want nothing more than tohave each and every one of my students leave my classroom with a sense of fulfillment not only in terms of their academics, but also as a developing member of society. In order to accomplish this goal, I intend to abide by the following “pillars”;“Establishing Community in Teaching and Learning Environments” and “Guiding theDevelopment of Inquiring and Reflective Minds”. These pillars encourage creating aframework for the type of environment that a teacher should create within theclassroom as well as the methods that will be used to successfully teach the eager learners.Creating an appropriate learning environment where all students feel that theyhave the ability to learn and succeed is an essential responsibility of the teacher. Inmy classroom, I will strive to recognize the different backgrounds and intellectualabilities of my students and adapt my lesson plans accordingly. I realize that thetypical elementary classroom includes students who possess a broad range of skills.There will definitely be students who require extra support to complete grade levelactivities, some who demonstrate a strong sense of independence, and finally thosewho are yearning to be challenged further. While I want to treat every student equallyand provide him or her with the same opportunities, I feel that it is important to cater to their differences. This mindset can be effectively carried out through a strongcommitment to differentiation. If a student is struggling I plan on keeping the lines of 
 
communication open between parents, support staff, and myself in order to bestaccommodate for the student. Some approaches may be as simple as spending somemore one on one time with the student and checking in on their progress frequently. If the student is struggling to a point where it is difficult for them to succeed in a wholegroup setting, I will be his or her biggest advocate to receive the outside supportnecessary. If the student seems to be excelling in my classroom, I intend onembedding extension activities within my lesson that take the highlighted topic onestep further in an effort to challenge these students. I will also place these students ina position where they have the opportunity to peer teach. Students truly gain a senseof accomplishment by carrying out the responsibility to bestow their knowledge onothers. By recognizing the differences in my students, establishing a clear communication path between students, the parents, and myself and creating acomfortable environment for all students to learn, I hope to create an effectivelearning community within my classroom.The ultimate goal of any teacher is to successfully develop the minds of their students. There are many different approaches that are used in order to convey thenecessary information within the curriculum. Personally, I believe that the mosteffective approach is one that takes a more student-centered outlook. I feel that themore the students are engaged in the subject matter, the more they will get out of thematerial. Inquiry will definitely be a main theme throughout every lesson. I think it isreally important to inquire as to why a student has arrived at a certain conclusion andto challenge them to continually question and explore.Through the inquiry-based method, I will definitely utilize the standards putforth by the state in every unit that I plan. I believe that it is very important toconstantly make sure that the children are learning the appropriate material and have
 
acquired the knowledge needed in order to succeed in future grade levels.Assessment will play an intricate part in ensuring that the students are understandingthe required material. Although formal assessments such as tests are necessary inorder to truly determine the knowledge base of the student, I believe that informalassessments are equally as important in order to keep the minds of the studentsconstantly at work. An example of an informal assessment that I might implore can beas simple as having the students answer a math flash card before getting in line for a bathroom break. Delivery of appropriate instruction as well as thorough assessmentswill serve as the foundation to the success of my classroom.A final component that I believe is necessary for effective teaching is the useof technology within the classroom. In today’s society, everything revolves aroundthe use of technology. Therefore, in order keep the interest of the students and to best prepare them for the real world, it is essential to implement technology within to thecurriculum whenever possible. I have had personal experience with the Smart Boardand cannot say enough about the positive effects this piece of technology has had onmy students. I feel as though the visual learning has significantly increased asvirtually anything can be modeled on the Smart Board. Additionally, the Smart Boardis equipped with multiple interactive features that keep the students engaged andexcited to learn. Whether it be the Smart Board or simply taking multiple visits to thecomputer lab to explore internet resources, I strongly believe that technology must be present in every classroom.As I enter the mid-way point of my student-teaching practicum, the reality of having my own classroom is an exciting opportunity that is on the horizon. While Iyearn for the day in the near future when I can finally label a room as, “MissGaffney’s Classroom”, I feel as though someone with my passion not only for 

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