Educational Philosophies

Purpose of K-12 Education:

Our primary directive is doing what’s best for students. We will nurture each student’s potential (intellectually, emotionally, socially, creatively) as we help each student recognize his/her own value, pursue personal excellence, and acquire knowledge.

Beliefs regarding students:

All students have inherent worth deserving of the best of our time, energy, and resources. All students can learn and should have opportunities to do so. All students should be safe (physically, emotionally, intellectually, and socially) and feel valued. They should be encouraged to express themselves creatively as well. Each student requires a personalized plan to provide them with a meaningful education.

Beliefs regarding parents:

Parent involvement is essential for school performance. Parents are the loom for building a tapestry of a solid, positive partnership where education flourishes. They are they yarn for building a healthy culture and climate. They can be valued partners and collaborators, if we can weave together our vision. I believe that parents value education and want to help their children in school, and we need to let them know how best to help us. We need to provide opportunities to make them welcome and comfortable in our schools and provide them with several opportunities to see what their children are doing in the classroom. We need to understand their perspectives, keep confidential issues private, but always remember the primary directive for education.

Beliefs on the importance of art in education:

Art provides students with another way of looking at the world- as there are historical perspectives, scientific perspectives and there is an artistic perspective. One way should not be valued more but instead be held on the same tier as it creates a well rounded individual. A successful art classroom promotes the development of craft, the understanding of art world, engagement with persisting, the chance to stretch and explore, reflection, envisions, expression, and observation.

Beliefs regarding technology:

Students are consistently surrounded by technology and part of the responsibility of a teacher is to support responsible use of such modalities. This involves the challenge of learning new technologies as they become available and challenging students to use them.

Characteristics and behaviors of good teachers:

Good teachers are passionate about students and learning. They nurture the whole child and are vested in the growth of each child. They are flexible, reliable, responsible, resourceful, and innovative. They are articulate and communicate well with students, parents, staff, and others. They create challenging learning environments for all students and differentiate instruction to fit the needs of students.  They model diligent work. They use consistent, thoughtful diagnosis of data to inform instruction. They are committed to their own life-long learning, sharing that learning, the improvement of their craft, and are supportive team players.

To be effective, teachers need:

Effective teachers need an environment that allows risk-taking. They need time to collaborate with colleagues, to share experiences, refine and develop skills within a professional learning community. Teachers flourish within a cooperative atmosphere where doors are open to cooperative teachers and minds are open to constructive discussions which include ideas and suggestions for improvements. They need to be supported with resources, words of affirmation, public, or private recognition, and empowered through training.

Motivation for teachers:

Teachers are motivated most by the chance of making a difference in the life of a child and being part of something bigger than the individual. When they feel valued and needed, it moves them to do more.

Most effective instructional methods:

To be most effective, match the instruction to the learning style of the learner and help them find their passions. I believe that multi-modal approaches, whenever possible, will meet more learner needs. I’ve seen positive results with hands-on, inquiry where learners construct authentic meaning, and can gradually assume responsibility for their own learning. I believe it is not about shoving facts and information down the throats of students but instead promoting quality understanding promoted by exploration and discovery. Teachers being enthusiastic, well prepared, and able to weave critical thinking throughout the content are also effective.

Effective classrooms that enhance quality learning:

An environment that enhances quality learning is engaging, pertinent, challenging, and emphasize the power of choice. An effective classroom should also be question driven and focus on appropriate dialogical pedagogy.  The teacher should always show passionate towards their subject to promote excitement in the classroom and towards learning.

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