Monday, September 21, 2009

This I believe

Prek Samroung Elementary School and Highland Park Middle School

The core of teaching is learning about myself and finding ways to give that to the children.

This I Believe:

I believe the teacher-student relationship as the primary determinant of what students accomplish in school.

I believe a student is a great teacher and a teacher is a great student. In this learning environment, teachers and students learn from each other.

I believe listening is learning. Students begin to listen to teacher and teacher begins to listen to students. These great mutual understandings and respects develop.

I believe that every educational decision must be based on what is best for the whole individual. The intellectual, social and moral development of every student must be of primary consideration.

I believe the educational environment should be a caring, nurturing place in which all students feel comfortable and safe. Students need to feel comfortable in order to ask questions and seek answers without fear of rejection or criticism.

I believe in fairness and consistency when dealing with discipline issues. If students have a structured environment in which they are aware of expectations and consequences, then intellectual, moral and social growth is maximized.

I believe that students should be active learners. Thoughtfully planned and student centered activities help students become self-directed, life long learners. In my own teaching I have found that when learning is relevant and enjoyable students are encouraged to take responsibility for their own learning.

I believe that schools are a place where students learn about themselves and about the world. Content is an important part of any educational system, but problem solving and critical thinking skills are equally important. Students must learn how to ask questions that are significant, access and analyze information, and solve problems. These skills are crucial and will help students find their place in today’s world.

I believe I can provide an engaging and challenging environment where students learn responsibility as well as ethical and moral values. Life skills as well as basic concepts of right and wrong, integrity and honesty need to be taught, modeled, and consistently enforced and reinforced.

I believe that all students from diverse backgrounds can learn and that they do so in different ways. It is my duty to address the diversity in the classroom by providing individualized programs and a variety of learning environments to meet the needs of all students.

I believe in no child left behind and also NO PARENT LEFT BEHIND.

I believe education should emphasize personal growth through solving problems that are real to students.

I believe, if encouraging and nourishing environment are provided, learning will flourish because people have an inherent tendency to learn.

I believe students must learn to make good choices and to be responsible for their own behavior.

I believe that my role of the teacher, is to help create a nurturing atmosphere for students and to promote the growth of the whole person.

I believe that students need to be fully participants in their own learning. To do this, I must help them to develop the skills they need to be self-directed learners.

I believe students learn best when they actively explore their own environment. Learning should provide multiple hands-on experiences. Students know something by doing it.

I believe that students often learn better from other students. I endeavor to provide multiple opportunities for students to work together to learn. I also believe that children learn best when adults are available to guide leaning experiences (Zone of Proximal Development, Vygotski, 1978).

I believe students are motivated when learning situation challenges them. I am here to guide them and coach them through those challenges (Bloom’s Taxonomy: Knowledge, Comprehension, Application, Analysis, Synthesis, and Evaluation).

I believe more and more that teachers should be facilitators and guides rather than directors.

I believe that teaching which is accepting and demanding leads to the best outcomes of the children.

In conclusion, I value learning from the perspective of the human potential for growth, becoming the best one can be. The shift is to study affective as well as cognitive dimensions of learning. Beliefs include: human being can control their own destiny; people are inherently good and will strive for a better world; people are free to act but must be responsible; behavior is the consequence of human choice; and people possess unlimited potential for growth and development. There is a natural tendency for people to learn, which will flourish if nourishing, encouraging environments are provided. Education is liberation. It frees them from their pasts so they learn to live in the present and have hope for the future. It frees them from obstacles and a lot of things that can set them back. Don’t fight darkness. Just bring the light in and darkness will disappear. In this perspective, teaching is giving, caring and sharing.