Philosophy of Teaching    

 

     As a teacher, I have the unique opportunity to nurture the curiosity and excitement of a young child.  Upon entering my classroom, I want each student to feel a sense of wonder in a safe and creative environment.  I feel that my role as a teacher is one of facilitator.  Children are encouraged to experience learning through a hands-on learning environment and to research their questions.  My role is to serve as a mentor and to guide them through the research and discovery process. I feel strongly that instruction should be activity-based, not textbook driven, and it should engage students as they experience all aspects of learning.  I also feel that students should take ownership of learning, therefore, students are taught to work in small, flexible groups and to actively discuss and explore new ways of thinking by sharing their thinking with others.

     Children's literature is very near and dear to my heart. I believe a good book can be the best kind of teacher. A good book can inspire us to expand our horizons, delve deeper into real world issues, contemplate one's actions, and above all learn new and exciting things. In my classroom, books are at the center of instruction. Children's literature is frequently used to teach math concepts, explore the craft of writing,  support science and social studies concepts, and used to explore a reading kind of life.

     Students in my classroom are surrounded by books. It is my goal to teach students how to become engaged readers and to have a passion for reading.  Students experience reading through a Reader's Workshop format.  Children participate as readers through shared reading, independent reading, and reading groups.  Reading should be fun, but it should also be purposeful.  I feel that if I can teach students how to ask meaningful questions of text, interact with the story, and connect prior knowledge to what they are reading, then I have given them a gift that will last a life time.

     During Writing Workshop, students begin to look at text from a Writer's point of view. Writing is a very creative and exciting craft. Being able to communicate one's thoughts and feelings is a critical skill in today's society. By learning from mentor author's, student can hone their skills as a writer and discover themselves in a whole new way. It is my goal to foster students' passion for writing and to incorporate research in the writing process. In addition, I feel it is important that students learn how to write non-fiction text. Therefore, writing is often integrated with science and social studies concepts, which allows students to gain a deeper understanding of the standards taught.

     During Math Workshop, students are often introduced to new concepts through children's literature and hands-on investigations. I feel that although skill and drill may have it's place in a traditional approach to math instruction, I believe students should be allowed to work collaboratively with their peers to investigate mathematical thinking. Students in my classroom are often presented with math concepts through the use of games, math stations, manipulatives, math investigations, and real-world approaches to critical thinking and problem solving.  I also believe that real understanding begins with talking and sharing of ideas. Therefore, students in my classroom are encouraged to have math journals and share their thinking with others. Discourse is key.

 

 
 
   

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