Friday, August 11, 2006

Take Five--Philosophy of Education

My philosophy is broadening. Early in my career, I wrote my philosophy to challenge students, to plant the seed (cliche as it is) so that they become life-learners, and to create empathetic students. I still adhere to those believes and feel strengthened in their mantras. It drives me to change my lessons every year. What I have added that I feel so passionately about is trying (even if in small ways) to prepare my students for their future. I feel that so few of our students will be English majors, but that thinking, engaging with text, analyzing text, and writing about it, is certainly found in any major. I am constantly online searching universities for their writing programs, what's required in say, the business department (in regards to writing), etc. I am amazed at what our students will be asked of and think that we can press beyond what literature has to offer and enrich the text through real-world connections.

Personally, I also have changed my philosophy to include me. I want to continue to learn, to stretch myself, to find new ways to teach a thesis statement, to find news sparks of interest engaging students in a text, etc. I want to find ways to engage myself. I find myself frustrated at times at the unkind words thrown at colleagues, the patronizing words dripped onto new teachers...or new ideas, but I also find myself excited, becoming a learner all over again. I want to stretch myself the way I am asking my students to do so.

A paradigm shift, no, but a gathering of tools, resources to ignite the desire to stay an educator, is all part of my philosophy of education.


At 10:38 PM, Blogger Karl Fisch said...

Thanks for sharing your passion - both with your students and with us. I do believe it is contagious and just might "infect" a few others.

At 12:22 PM, Blogger Ms. Kakos said...

I too have to remind myself that we are not preparing our students to be English majors.

I like the idea of including yourself in your philosophy. You sound like a potential Bread Loafer...

At 2:58 PM, Blogger Lary Kleeman said...

Michele, I love the line/idea that "I have changed my education philosophy to include me"....this comes close to the heart of constructivism, I think, since as teachers we have to be learners first and in the present tense.


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