Personal Philosophy of Education Artifact

During the course, The Reflective Educator, we studied five different philosophies of education: Perrenialism (the classics) Essentialism (the basics), Progressivism (learn by doing), Social Reconstructionism (social justice), Existentialism (self-determined learning). We studied how these philosophies developed over time, the positive and negative aspects of each philosophy, and how our personal and professional beliefs and attitudes fell into these five main categories. The first assignment of the course was to write our philosophy of education. The culminating assignment was to revise and update our philosophy, and reflect on the changes we had made. At this point, I identify closely with Progressivism and the work of John Dewey.

You can find the full paper at the following link: Philosophy of Education.

Prior to taking this course, I did not have a classification for my beliefs about education and how they fit into philosophies, politics, and the current system of education. I had, however, completed all of the coursework in the PASC I program. During the program, I developed my views and debated my perspective on education with my classmates. I did not have a framework for classifying these multiple perspectives until taking The Reflective Educator. The readings and discussions in this course have helped me consider the implications of working in a school system where my philosophy clashes with the philosophy of my district and the public school system in general. Our district and the public school system tend to be Essentialist, with a focus on the basics. This class helped me to ask valuable questions such as :

  • Who decides what “the basics” are?
  • Is learning “the basics” relevant to student’s lives and experiences?

The following section of my paper addresses this very important concern.

” I believe that now public schools have a greater responsibility to society, a responsibility to teach with a progressive approach. Students need to learn academic skills and knowledge that develop into the abilities necessary to start a fulfilling career and successfully move on to post high school education opportunities. Students need to develop interpersonal skills and personal strengths that will enable them to creatively solve problems and successfully cooperate in teams. Students need to understand the importance of local, state, national, and global citizenship, and know ways in which they can participate in these different levels. Finally, students need to recognize their own talents and interests, as well as ways in which they learn best, so that as they move through adulthood they may develop new skills, take risks in new ventures, and seek personal fulfillment.” (Lister, 2009, p1)

This movie, created in iMovie and posted to YouTube, outlines the main points in my personal philosophy of education.

The Reflective Educator was essential in helping me discover my identity as an educator and my beliefs about the experiences students should have at school. The Progressive classroom is the type of classroom I strive to create for my students. This approach also coincides with the literature on best practices for teaching technology and media literacy. As a curriculum leader in my district, I give workshops and observation lessons that tend to be progressive in nature. Until this course, teachers who come from a more Essentialist perspective have been very frustrating to me. They also hold very little interest for my teaching ideas. Now I can at least recognize the Essentialist perspective as common and valid, even though it is not my own.  I can also seek out teaching partners to collaborate with who share my philosophy so that I can further develop my teaching skills and strategies in alignment with my personal beliefs.

Published on March 11, 2010 at 1:32 am  Leave a Comment  

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