Reasons to Teach
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"When I'm in trouble, you're always there to help me.
That's why you the best teacher I've ever had."

"You are a good friend and teacher."

"Your a great teacher. I've learned a lot from you. Keep
teaching!"

"He teaches us how to learn."

I wish to help unfold the maximum individual potential of ALL my students. This means treating the child as a whole and helping unfold all of his or her potentialities whether they are artistic, musical, analytical, verbal, scientific, moral, interpersonal, intrapersonal, etc. Children should be encouraged to explore their own unique interests and talents in school. A teacher should help expand a child's interests, not the reverse.

I wish to teach children how to thrive in a COMMUNITY. How to be accepting and compassionate to ALL of their classmates and to learn how to effectively express their needs, concerns, fears, frustrations, and goals. I want EVERY child to be able to live and work successfully in the classroom, school, family and larger community. See, "Teaching Children to Care: Management in the Responsive Classroom," by Ruth Charney, as an example of the application of this approach in the classroom.

Children will often learn best from each other. They will sometimes do better if organized by similar interests instead of similar ages or abilities. It is critical that children learn how to work cooperatively and productively in groups.

I wish to teach children how to live in the "real world" and to make their school experience as refreshing and vital (fun) as the world really is. I want to help instill in them values of hard work, focus and INNER drive. I want them to be able to think critically, internalize THEIR goals and forever free themselves from the "prison"/low level intellectual functioning "mentality" that pervades far too many of today's schools. I want less discipline and more a fascination with life. I want them to assume CONTROL of their lives and FEEL COMFORTABLE TO FAIL in this great experiment we call life.

I want to present students with an enriched curriculum that presents from an early age concepts and insights normally deemed "advanced." Upper elementary students can, for example, grasp (and may want to grasp) essential elements of Einstein's theories of relativity IF it is presented in an understandable, concrete yet exciting fashion that stimulates the imagination. Throughout the school years concepts and areas of study should be presented without successive degrees of approximation and challenge until the concepts are synthesized and truly understood (planting seeds). Schools should become great laboratories of learning and applied creativity.

I will not settle for students mastering rote knowledge without acquiring a conceptual understanding of WHAT THEY ARE REALLY DOING AND WHY. All learning should be fun. The concept of the learner as requiring discipline to learn is faulty- learners learn because they are curious and want to understand their surroundings. Active not passive learning should be stressed.

Effective use of computer technology must permeate the curriculum. Web technology in particular should be seen as a vehicle for personal empowerment, collaborative work, positive global change and substantive research.

Finally I have high learning and life expectations for ALL CHILDREN- no less than for my own life.

Above All....

Love Them

See Also: Educational Philosophy & Thoughts on Education

 

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