STATEMENT OF EDUCATIONAL PHILOSOPHY
My career in education is dominated by my experiences as an early childhood educator. My experience as a teacher coupled with my training and experience in supervision has inspired the following educational philosophy.
I believe that all children are not only capable of learning, they will learn. All students will develop self-esteem, which leads to confidence. Students will learn to become independent, to know their strengths and weaknesses and become organized in their thinking. My hope for students is that they will learn to become responsible for themselves and respectful towards their peers, adults, school environment, and community. In every aspect of their lives, I hope that every student works to the best of his/her abilities. I believe in order to be successful academically every child must begin by developing personally and socially.
Student outcomes are dependent upon the instructional climate of their classroom and school environment. In order to expect students to become organized thinkers there must be an organized, nurturing and supportive environment for children to learn in. Classrooms should be clearly labeled with age-appropriate signs. Daily schedules should be posted and routines implemented and followed. Children work best or most successfully when they know what is expected from them and when they know what to expect.
An atmosphere that is respectful to and reflective of students will lead to students who are respectful to peers, adults, school, and community. The school and classroom environment must reflect students work as much as possible. Children must feel a sense of ownership over their environment.
Parents must be an integral part of the instructional program. Parent presence and involvement will make the school experience for each student more complete and important than just feeling like a place they have to go. Parents must be welcomed into every class to read their favorite book or personal writing during story time. During music parents could teach their favorite songs or simply sing along with their children.
Creating an environment where every member; students, educators, and parents, feels a sense of ownership is perhaps the most important link to positive student outcomes. This may not be an easy task, however it is one that is in the best interest of everybody.
Children learn best when they are actively involved in the learning process. In addition, children learn best within their personal zone of proximal development. Teaching in a developmentally appropriate fashion is at the forefront of my beliefs towards instruction. A curriculum that supports the child who is just beginning to communicate stories and the child who is capable of writing stories is the only one that makes sense to me. In this curriculum there is no room for failure. Students are able to work to the best of their abilities and are positively reinforced for their progress.
For each student, teachers will work intimately, keep an anecdotal, and compile a portfolio to document the child’s growth. In order to support the teacher and ensure individualized attention, class size must be kept to a minimum.
Teachers would work together collaboratively in deciding which topics of instruction should be taught. During grade meetings, for instance, the teachers on the same grade could decide which topics of academic subjects they would like to explore with their classes. During the grade meetings they could discuss their opinions and share both positive and negative feelings about how the topic is being explored within their own classroom. Together, through sharing, they could support each other’s strengths and weaknesses.
A Leader needs to lead by example and possess a strong educational vision. I believe the priority of every school should be its children however, that is a tone which is set by the Leader of the school. Just as I believe a teacher should allow her students opportunities to feel ownership, I believe the school leader and/or administration should allow teachers to feel a sense of ownership over their work environment.
As a leader, I will seek out new and innovative professional development opportunities. These opportunities will not be for teachers alone but for the Paraprofessionals and parents as well. I will keep my door open although I hope not be found in my office very often. I will make it my personal goal to come to know the students as personally as I can. I hope to sing along with the children during music, read stories during story time, construct buildings with blocks and confer during writing workshop. I will keep at the forefront of all my beliefs the reason I became involved in the field of education was to work with and for children. My decisions as a supervisor/leader will always have the children’s best interests as my priority.
The type of school I envision holds the aforementioned hopes and goals as a minimum standard upon which to grow and flourish. I have learned that nothing in life that is worthy comes easy. I know it will take hard work, commitment and dedication, but most importantly, team- work with my colleagues to make these dreams come true. I am committed to realizing my dreams and I welcome any future experiences that will add insight to developing these ideas further.