Make A Difference
I have always wanted to be an elementary school teacher ever since I was young. My grandmother was a third grade teacher, and after every school year she would give me her old books that she no longer used. I was so excited when she gave them to me. As soon as she handed them to me I would make my younger brother play school with me. From the first day she gave me her old school books, there was no doubt in my mind that I would become a teacher of education.
Education is defined as the lifelong process of acquiring knowledge, skills, and values through either formal or informal means. I believe that the purpose of education is to allow students to discover who they are through exploring what the future holds for them. Formal means of education should provide students with skills that will facilitate living and working in a dynamic world.
In my opinion, a variety of instructional options are necessary for teachers and students to be successful. There are many different approaches available in doing so, a few of them include: the behaviorism, essentialism, and progressivism philosophies.
Agreeing with the behaviorist point of view, I see myself using positive reinforcement with my students, when a task or behavior is achieved. Rewarding students can make a big difference in the student’s attitudes, even if it is just a little reward like a smiley face drawn on their paper or even a sticker. By doing these little things it will help encourage students to continue the good work and to carry on in this manner.
Behaviorism also deals with the big role that the environment plays in a student’s academic learning. Throughout my junior high and high school years, I had the meanest, toughest English teachers. None of these teachers cared for us as students, and did nothing but yell at us. We as students hated going to our English classes, because all we did was sit there every day and write five to ten page papers about absolutely nothing important, it was just to give the teacher free time to do as she pleased. English should be a subject that I enjoy doing, since I will be writing plenty of letters as a teacher to parents, students, and other faculty members to let them know what my class will be doing during that week or in the future. Writing in my previous English classes gave me much needed experience of how to write excellent papers and letters. Nevertheless because of these careless teachers, I am not fond of any English classes I have to this day. This leads into John Dewey’s philosophy of progressivism.
Progressivism is respect for individuality. My English teacher’s never had respect for their students; they were there for the money, not to inspire the lives of their students. I will use the progressive approach in the structure of my classroom. As I enter the educational field I have discovered how different each individual’s needs are, and how different methods have to...