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Philosophy of Education

My Reflection of Education

Yaritza Orellana

National University
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Students’ lives are impacted at the very beginning of their education, and as a teacher, I

believe that we have the ability to develop ways to captivate students as they learn. I was

fascinated by school at a really early age, and so my fascination for teaching began soon after.

As a kid, I admired my teachers so much that I saw myself being in that position when I got

older.

I was nine years old when I realized that I wanted to be a teacher. It all started with my

fourth-grade teacher, Mr. Perez. He was such a dedicated and devoted teacher to the entire

classroom and clarified to the best of his knowledge when students asked questions. His way of

teaching really impacted me in so many ways. I enjoyed doing homework, helping my

classmates out if any questions came up and even participating in class (something I had never

volunteered to do before due to my timidity).

In fact, that year during my vacation I decided I would try a Teacher’s Aid position that

was available for the older elementary students. I was so thrilled and anxious, but overall, more

excited than anything. I felt like a big kid walking into a classroom of kindergarteners’ and being

called a ‘T.A.’ During that time, I learned that I loved the idea of sharing my knowledge to the

younger students. I enjoyed the entire aspect of what it was like to be a teacher aid, and to me it

felt as though it was a glimpse of what it would like to be a teacher. On my last day of being a

T.A, I received a whole lot of love and appreciation from the students, and warmth and joy filled

my heart. It was such a rewarding feeling.

Now that I begin to look into different philosophies, I am beginning to have an idea as to

how I would like to run a classroom. The top two philosophies that I found myself to relate with
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the most were Progressivism and Essentialism. I could not be in any more agreeance with those

two methods of teaching.

When it comes to Progressivism, as an educator I feel that it is important for students to

give their input, and what better way to do that than by participating. Also, hands-on experience

in a classroom can be so effective and so helpful because I believe it prepares the students for

what is to come. As a student myself, I feel that a lot of knowledge is gained by experimenting.

On the other hand, when it comes to Essentialism, I do believe that there are certain behaviors

and methods that could be taught to students so that they can grow up to be good individuals.

As a professional educator, my goals are to motivate children to succeed, be kind to one

another, and to understand that they are capable of achieving things through trial and error. In

one of my article findings, Amy L. Eva discusses how children’s minds are capable of growth

and what causes this growth can be determined by the belief that people can change for the better

(Eva, 2017). What I found especially intriguing about this article is that, as educators, we can

help to open up students minds so that they too can have a positive outlook in education and

more importantly, in life.

To motivate students, an educator must learn to understand and communicate with each

and every one of them. In another article I found that students who are labeled as problematic

can be better approached through a special form of teaching. The form of teaching that is

mentioned in the article is referred to as the Teaching-Family Model, which means that rather

than labeling a child as a ‘trouble-maker,’ it is shown that it is better to approach them by trying

to build a relationship with the individual (American Psychological Association, 2003).

I aspire to be a teacher that can lead students to success. My goal is to make an impact on

as many students as possible if not all. I want to be the type of teacher that students feel
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comfortable enough to participate and ask questions. I would love for my students to be able to

confide in me and most importantly to be excited when walking into the classroom.

In another article I read that some teachers believe that aside from standardized tests,

they should also test the student’s strength and weaknesses (Green, 2010). In order to assist to all

students, as an educator I believe it is important to acknowledge what a student is capable of and

what the student appears to struggle with most. Only then, I will be able to assist a student fully.

Truth is, everyone struggles with something, and the only way to improve is by experiencing,

studying, and practicing.

In conclusion, I feel that I am ready to pursue a career in teaching now because I know it

is something I am extremely passionate about. With previous internship experience at an

elementary and as a Behavior Therapist for kids today, I can say that there is no better feeling

than that of helping a child succeed. I hope I can one day inspire students the way so many

teachers have inspired me.


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References

American Psychological Association. (2003). Family-Like Environment Better for Troubled

Children and Teens. Retrieved from http://www.apa.org/research/action/family.aspx.

Eva, L. A.. 2017. Tips for Helping Kids Adopt a Growth Mindset. Retrieved from

https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/tips_for_helping_kids_adopt_a_growth_min

dset.

Green, E. 2010. Building a Better Teacher. Retrieved from

https://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/07/magazine/07Teachers-t.html.

Sadker, M.P. & Sadker, D. S. (1997). Teachers, schools and society (4th ed., pp. 403-405.) NY:

McGraw Hill.