At the beginning of my college career, I already knew a fair amount about the education profession. My mom is a fourth grade teacher and my grandma was a fourth grade teacher, so I grew up immersed in education and teaching. The way I actually came to love teaching was through actually spending time in my mom’s classroom, so I had some idea of what good teaching should be from simply seeing it over the years.
That being said, I have grown significantly in the maturity of my philosophy of education over the course of my time at Hope. I began Hope with a relatively “reform-y” mindset – the Waiting for Superman book was one of my Christmas presents one year in high school. As time has gone on, I have become much more of an advocate for traditional public schools. Like I said in both my first teaching philosophy and my latest teaching philosophy, I believe that education is one of the most powerful tools out there. However, I believe that to “fix” education, we cannot simply slap a “charter school band-aid”, as I like to call it, on the problem. Education is a holistic endeavor: it is not simply about test scores and graduation rates. It has taken me some time and experience in more of a teaching role to be able to see more of the complexity of education that is not visible to those who are not actually in the trenches (i.e. many policy- and lawmakers). While there are some “reform-y” ideas that are decent, I believe in the power of public schools, and all my experiences in public schools have really reinforced that belief in me.
My beliefs about assessment have also changed greatly over the course of my time at Hope. Due to my limited experiences with assessment as a student in middle and high school, my view...
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...ationship with their teachers. In field placements, I of course believed this, but it was harder for me to make those deep connections I wanted to with every student. While there are kids I will connect with more than others, I have been able to build much deeper relationships and really live out my desire to have relationships with all students, and that has really bolstered my desire to teach. I have nearly always believed that it is the relationships that make teaching worth doing, and I finally get the chance to really and truly build those relationships this semester.
In essence, student teaching has affirmed who I am as a teacher: a builder of relationships and developer of human beings. Yes, content matters and is so important, but relationships are what truly make teaching the honorable and desirable profession that it is and hopefully always will be to me.
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