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Cassadii Lasota’s Frame of Reference

Introduction:

The opportunity to contribute to shaping the lives of students, and ultimately

shaping the future, is both an incredible honour and an enormous task. To be a

successful teacher I will have to try new things, make mistakes, learn from them

and then try again in hopes that I will do better. I am so incredibly excited to be

able to play a positive role in the lives of my learners.

Relationships with learners, parents, colleagues and community:

Building positive relationships with learners is one of the most important

aspects of teaching. Being intentional about my words and actions has been an

ongoing personal goal and I have been working really hard to make my everyday

interactions with students show how much I care about them. Relationships with

parents and the community are also essential to my students’ success because they

both do so much teaching outside of school hours and really have a strong influence

on a child’s self-identity. This impact is why I know how important it is for me to

communicate with parents, create situations where students can familiarize

themselves with the community and work to create a learning experience where

there is an active role for parents and the community to play. As a beginning

teacher I have endlessly benefitted from relationships with colleagues. I know that

with so much diversity in classrooms I will never have all the answers. Having a

relationship with other educators makes me a better educator. The BC Curriculum

leaves so much space for educators to pursue their passions and I believe that leads

to really incredible teaching to be shared. I know that teaching will also come with

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facing situations that will weigh on me, so having a support network of colleagues

who have had similar experiences will be a necessity for me.

Teaching and Learning Strategies:

Knowing my students is so important for creating valuable learning experiences for them. 

Differentiating to meet the needs of all my learners is vital because each student is so different from their 

classmate beside them. This is where I believe the Universal Design for Learning and Tiered Learning 

approaches can make it easier for me to diversify my teaching and make sure that what I am doing is 

appropriate for my learners. The BC Curriculum and Core Competencies also are supportive for 

incorporating my student’s interests and my own knowledge into my teaching. I know that when passions 

can be included in lessons it makes for more meaningful teaching and learning. 

Classroom Management:

I will find ways to keep students engaged and excited about learning, while

also maintaining control over the classroom in order to make it a safe and pleasant

environment for all. A big part of managing a classroom is preventing possible

chaos. As outlined in the First Peoples Principles of Learning, students need to

understand that their actions have consequences on the people and environment

around them. When prevention doesn’t work, and I am faced with a challenging

situation in my classroom, I will be clear and consistent with setting boundaries,

while also showing students empathy and kindness. I will try to remember that

“learning involves patience and time” and that I need to be modelling this for my

students even when I am agitated or overwhelmed. I will take into consideration

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that students may be bringing in stresses from outside the classroom and are still

learning to control their behaviour. I will show them patience and try my best to

make these instances teachable moments, keeping in mind that “learning involves

recognizing the consequences of one’s actions” and my role in the classroom is to

teach the right thing to do not to punish for doing the wrong thing.

Assessment:

Being able to assess students is sometimes very difficult and I can find it

challenging to be on the same page about what level a piece of work is at. This is

why tools like the BC Performance Standards, shared criteria building and talking to

students about their work is be so valuable for me to make expectations clear to

students. Although summative assessment is necessary and important, I think it

needs to be used with the understanding that it will be missing certain aspects of

the learner that can’t be shown in a quick snapshot. Formative assessment is the

majority of assessment going on with my teaching because it provides a place for

students to work from and encourages constant, evolving learning. The way I assess

needs to take into consideration what the purpose of the task is and who the learner

is.

Needs of Diverse Learners Through Inclusive Practices:

Every student has something to contribute to my classroom. I know that each learner I come 

across in my teaching career will need something different to be successful. I will need to be flexible and 

creative to come up with ways to meet the needs of all my learners to the best of my ability. This is one of

the many reasons why building a classroom community is so vital. I want to explicitly teach that everyone

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in our classroom has strengths and stretches and that is what makes our class so special. I will model this 

to show that even teachers have things we need to work hard to get better at. 

Conclusion:

First and foremost, my goal as an educator is to teach students to become effective

learners. John Taylor Gatto once said “There isn’t a right way to become educated;

there are as many ways as there are fingerprints” (1991, p. 1). It is impossible to

teach each student that comes through my doors everything they will need to know,

the “right” education for them may not even be clear yet, but if I teach a student to

think critically and to enjoy learning they can become strong learners. Hopefully,

they will begin to question themselves about what the right choices are and will be

able to teach themselves the skills they need for their new job or to go further with

their passions. I want to be a part of my students’ journey to becoming effective

learners, so they will know how to think outside the box and look at challenges as a

way to become a better learner.