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Claire Wilgus

Philosophy of Education
"Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn."
-Benjamin Franklin
I believe that my role as an educator is to prepare students for the world they will be
stepping into and encourage them to be contributing, ethical members of society. This is done by
instigating discussion and providing hands-on learning experiences in a nurturing and accepting
environment. In order to reach this goal and provide the best for my students, I aspire to be a
discussion facilitator and constant encourager every day in my classroom.
In general, children learn best when they are given the tools to explore information and
concepts on their own and come up with conclusions based on their findings. Although a
classroom needs order and consistency in order to run smoothly, it is also important to leave
room for creativity and self-expression and to not let the structure hinder students questioning.
In order to facilitate this kind of environment in my classroom, I will avoid simply giving
students information and having them recite it back to me. Because every child learns differently,
my goal as a teacher is to present information and skills in a variety of ways, so that each student
has time to feel especially connected and involved with his learning experience. Because of these
differences among students, I will also incorporate diverse assessment methods into my
classroom, from written tests to group projects, to ensure that all students have the chance to
display their understanding in a way that best suits them.
Students come into school with diverse backgrounds and drastically different outlooks on
life. I understand that the students that I will be teaching may be from completely different
cultures than I am used to, but I am capable and willing to adapt my teaching style to meet my
students right where they are. Diversity needs to be encouraged and celebrated in the classroom,
and although making accommodations for each students assorted needs seems daunting, I will
try my best to make every student feel confident in his or her learning abilities and culture.
Diversity is present in every classroom, no matter how homogeneous it may appear, and each
child provides a learning opportunity for her peers about different lifestyles, cultures, languages,
religions, and families. Because of these diverse ideas, students in my classroom will have their
desks grouped together in order to facilitate discussion and encourage collaboration between
peers. It is crucial to provide students with opportunities to step outside of their cultural comfort
zones and experience the lives of other people, especially in our increasingly globalized world.
This could be accomplished in many ways, such as projects, videos, technology, guest speakers,
and even through interactions with peers in the collaborative classroom setup.
I believe that the teaching profession requires so much more of the teacher than simply
being a presence in the students lives in the classroom; it involves having a relationship with the
parent(s) or guardian(s) of each student, being an active member of the schools community,
working with other teachers and administration to figure out what is best for each student, and
being a positive role model inside and outside of the classroom. Just as I expect the highest level
of performance from each one of my students, I will hold myself to these high standards as well
and continue to modify my teaching through professional development and self-reflection. I am
also very passionate about parent involvement in my classroom due to its strong connection with
a childs academic and social success, so I will provide ample opportunities for parents to be
involved and to be in contact with me. I would hope that within the first few weeks with my
students, they would be able to clearly see that I am an honorable, uplifting, and involved adult
in their life that is passionate about seeing them succeed academically and in all other aspects of
life.