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Personal Teaching Philosophy

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Personal teaching Philosophy

The purpose of this essay is to explain my teaching philosophy that I have based on the previous weeks study of Montessori, Steiner and Reggio Emilia's underpinning views on education. Each approach is seen to be built on coherent vision of how to improve human society by helping children realize their full potential as intelligent, creative, whole persons and a strong educational alternative to traditional education (Edward, 2002).

A teaching philosophy can see children as exceptional individual who need a safe, nurturing, and challenging environment in which they can foster a love for learning. This can also help with students developmental domains socially, physically and emotionally. Edward (2002) explains children are viewed as active authors of their own development, strongly influenced by natural, dynamic, self-righting forces within themselves, opening the way towards growth and learning. As a teacher, it is their ambition to help students to fulfil their educational journey. This could be seen through providing an environment that is warm, safe, inviting, and supportive, and encourages communication. As I have explained in these three views, which can be seen as components to establishing such an environment. First, as a teacher working alongside the student as a guide, second, allowing children's natural inquisitiveness to assist in their learning, and thirdly by the student developing respect for all things, people and the wider community.

For a teacher to develop a teaching philosophy for students, it must constantly be reflected and reviewed in consideration where improvement is needed and to be acted on. Reflection and review is an essential part of transformation and personal growth for an educator of students. According to Rinaldi (2006) the value of documentation is a tool for assessment/evaluation and self-assessment/self-valuation. This process is first and foremost an educational tool but also a great opportunity in the process of learning-teaching enhancement in the classroom. For this to happen, it is considered that students have control and input into the direction of their own learning. As stated by Seldin (2010) a teacher's job is to help direct or guide children to and in purposeful activities. For a teacher to work alongside a child as a guide they need to present their work to them in a way that they can absorb information. This enables students to search for knowledge and to construct answers to their own questions. For students to construct knowledge, they need the opportunity to discover for them-selves and practice skills in valid situations. Engaging and motivating lessons will be fundamental for students to learn, as this can be done by adapting lessons to ensure core points are coherent, and that their needs and learning styles are catered for. This reflects Gardiners' multiple intelligences (Edwards, 2000) as not all children experience the same kind of learning when they enter school, which is extremely important and includes the hand-on approach element. Students must experience these hands on approach activities to learn through experiences throughout all areas of the curriculum. This encourages interaction and caters for different learning styles. As an effective teacher, it is a must to ensure that students have endless ways and occasions to express themselves. It is outlined by Seldin (2010) that a student's learning is through hands on experiences, investigation and research, becoming actively engaged in studies rather than passively waiting to be taught. This can be done through hands-on experiences and resources that can give the opportunity for individual exploration and construction of knowledge to be developed. If students are not connected to what they are learning in the classroom, how can we expect them to learn? Effective teachers are not only instructors but are also seen as co-learners and collaborators with students. With this approach it is believed to be seen as, learning does not only occur as a natural consequence of teaching, but is dependent on the role that the children play in their own learning, alongside the role of the adult (Millikan, 2003).

It is also seen to be important to have the opportunities for self-discovery. This could be done through the opportunities of studying materials that have meaning and relevance to one's life and interests. As New (2007) explains, this can tap into the innate gifts, curiosities, passions and talents that is purposed of the child, rather than imposing these things from a predetermined curriculum. A curriculum that is developed around students interests encourages fundamental inspiration and inspires the excitement in them to learn. Curriculum explained in this way, according to Ogletree (1974) is as compatible with, and supportive of the child's unfolding stages of development. Another way to take learning in a direction that is relevant to student's interest is to engage students in open exchange of ideas about the lessons and units of study. As explained by Drake (2008) when teachers take the time to listen to their students.... it allows teachers to be flexible in creating plans for students. Given the opportunity for input, students develop ideas and set goals that make for a much richer and relevant experience,



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