Philosophy of Education

Every child has the ability to succeed when given an atmosphere of love, safety, nurture, care, respect, excitement, discovery, and a balance between freedom and responsibility. Every child not only needs these factors to stimulate lifelong assimilation, but also deserves them and is entitled to them.  I also believe that for a child to thrive in a classroom, all of these factors must be present, for together they form a complete and ideal educational environment.  My purpose as a teacher is to encourage all students to higher levels of academic achievement while fostering positive growth in social/emotional behaviors and attitudes. I believe that the students' feelings and thoughts should be considered legitimate and valuable. The students' creativity should always be nurtured and encouraged. A mutual respect, admiration, and honor should exist between and among all members of the classroom community. The classroom should provide a safe environment in which each student is valued and respected.

I believe that certain life and social skills are not taught well enough in elementary school.  I also believe that the teaching style in which a child is exposed to determines the outcome of the child’s knowledge retention.  Our society is generally visual, and children need to learn how to take in, process, and think critically about the information they receive.  With television, billboards, magazines, etc., children are constantly bombarded with images, many of which are intended to persuade them to want, think, or understand things a particular way.  A significant part of instruction should be devoted to helping children understand the difference between reality and propaganda.  Our society has become so technology centered that the television and computer have become baby-sitters.  At this rate, the great art of writing and the use of imagination will become extinct.  The best sign of a successful classroom, particularly language arts, is that children will often select books to read for their own pleasure.  In my classroom, I read to my students often and use a variety of literature types as well as technology.  The variety is to ensure that students are exposed to a type of literature they enjoy in order to motivate them to read similar books on their own. Time must be allowed for discussion, whether it is small group or whole class, in order to build a deeper understanding of what is learned and to help students formulate their own ideas and opinions.  Students must also realize that not all perspectives are the same as their own.  They can, and must, learn to accept and deal with differences in opinions without creating conflict.

Each student has the ability to learn and attain self-fulfillment.  I believe in the opportunity of lifelong education for all individuals.  I consider education to be a collaborative effort among learners, educators, families, communities, governments, businesses, and industries. If a teacher is firm and fair with discipline, the students will be prepared for what they will encounter in the real world.  I believe that I am not only teaching them the basic subject areas, but also how to become better citizens who will lead productive and healthy lives.  The teacher should be a person whom the students can trust, respect, and confide in.  Everyone benefits from discipline in the school system.  Students learn more and develop a feeling of pride and belonging because they are part of a productive, orderly, and fun learning environment.  Instruction can only be effective if the teacher is able to spend more time and effort helping students instead of dealing with behavior problems.  A successful discipline program will enable students to work, play, and live in a friendly, safe, and orderly environment where they can enjoy great personal freedom.

All students can learn and achieve greatness regardless of their previous academic performance, family background, socio-economic status, race or gender. Learning should be student-centered, authentic, relevant, and personally meaningful with real-world applications. I believe that it is important for students to uncover complex and abstract ideas through inquiry-based learning. The learning should equip students for change by encouraging adaptability. It is important, regardless of age, for students to be encouraged to make responsible choices and decisions.  Children should be motivated to discover their own values, beliefs, and basis of knowledge.

I will continue to strive daily to build self-confidence and self-esteem in every student.  Students should take part in the decision making process of the classroom democracy.  It is my goal to facilitate each student's drive to reach his individual potential and to enable the students to succeed not solely in academics, but in life.