As a biology teacher-to-be, how can I challenge my students to question their realities? How can I inspire or foster personal growth in a classroom that is so built on fact and often seen as detached from morality? I have now taken graduate courses on critical literacy and on STEAM education, and I am excited by them. That said, I am still unsure of how I can capitalize on these teaching models so that my students will leave the room wanting to know more about the fundamentals of life itself and not just the study of it. And finally, once I think I’ve figured out all that, how do I reflect on my practices as a teacher?
“If you think in terms of a year, plant a seed; if in terms of ten years, plant trees; if in terms of 100 years, teach the people.” - Confucius
On the first day of Foundations of Education, we were asked to write our philosophy of teaching in seven words. I wrote, “If I don’t grow, the kids won’t.” In my life, I most value two qualities: curiosity and empathy for cultures and people that differ from my own, and continual growth, not only as an educator, but also as a human being. I have learned how to push through discomfort in conversations about race, religion, gender, and other social justice issues for the sake of gaining greater insight into the experiences of those I’d never considered. Naturally, I let these virtues guide my “Why”, the reason why I teach and why I teach what I teach. I believe educators are there to shape young minds and behaviors. I want to be a teacher who inspires my students to be engaged in classroom discussions, but also to think beyond the scope of the classroom.
- Assessment / Behavior / Differentiation / Engagement / Planning