My teaching philosophy is based on the social-constructivist model where both teacher and students contribute to and guide learning experiences. In this way, classroom instruction caters to the interests of students and is therefore highly engaging and meaningful. The teacher facilitates developmentally appropriate instruction while guiding learners through active engagement with the classroom environment.
Through the use of the Responsive Classroom model,1 children are encouraged to create personal goals, or as we call them, hopes and dreams, for the school year. These goals are then incorporated into classroom learning, conveying to students that their ambitions are valuable and worthy of their peers’ and teacher’s attention. By creating a classroom environment that invites children to take ownership in goal setting, students are more likely to take learning risks and to challenge themselves because they feel validated and appreciated by their teacher and classmates.
Children bring a wealth of knowledge with them to school based on cultural and family practices. As a teacher, it is critical that I consider each child’s cultural and individual life experiences as significantly impacting his/her learning perspective. It is my aspiration to actively engage students’ families through collaborative teaming and by working together, we are better able to nurture and support children so that they may thrive and learn.
1 Northeast Foundation for Children (Eds.). (2004). Responsive classroom level 1 resource book. Turners Fall, MA: Northeast Foundation for Children.