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Teaching Philosophy

Teachers have a profound effect on the students they teach. The success of a class
is heavily dependent on both the attitude and the efficacy of a teacher. I cannot count the
number of teachers that have impacted me in my years as a student. Many found ways to
foster my intellect, and my inner voice in the crucial years of my life when I struggled to
find who I was. As an educator, my goal is to do the same for my future students. It is
valuable to cultivate students mental abilities, but equally important to cultivate students
emotional fortitude. Ultimately, education serves as preparation for the many trials of lie,
and helping students discover who they are will prepare them just as well as honing their
mental skills.
I am prepared to teach students levels one and two of United States History, and
World History as well. These subjects span from the founding of ancient civilizations, to
the Renaissance that elevated the cultural standing of mankind on multiple platforms, to
the Revolutionary War that birthed this country, and numerous other topics. I will teach
my students that historical figures and events serve as excellent parallels to current
events, and can inform us about how to handle the problems of today. The actions of past
U.S. Congresses and Presidents, as well as other foreign Monarchs and Parliaments, to
enact social and economic reforms serve as a template for my students to observe in the
future when they control world events. My students will walk away from my classroom
with an understanding of how the past experiences of governments and citizens across the
world set precedents for the future governments and citizens to follow.
Students play a significant role in their ability to learn, and it is the teachers
responsibility to harness that role within his or her students. This is why I like to utilize
group discussion for my classes. Well-framed discussion questions can provoke riveting,
and thoughtful responses from students. Traditional lecture may be required, however, in
instances where students are just being introduced to material. In those cases, it is
necessary to provide students context in order to maintain a fruitful discussion later. Most
often, though, I will encourage students to think critically about historical topics in an
open class forum. This serves as a great way to assess their knowledge of a topic, and
simultaneously inform other classmates about perspectives they might not have
considered.
Other forms of assessment would include group presentations, individual
presentations, and even formal debate. Contextualizing knowledge of a topic through
discussion before a group truly shows a students grasp of the subject material, and their
ability to coherently relay that grasp. Active discussion of material is a quality method of
assessing student understanding. Framing discussions about history establishes a
students ability to apply their knowledge in how they understand present-day situations.
For students who are less comfortable with speaking, typed essays also demonstrate true
understanding. Through writing, students can utilize secondary source materials and
frame them into their own individual arguments. I believe that both these forms of
assessment have great value in measuring the success of both the students and myself.