Friday, April 22, 2011

Pulling It All Together: Reflection and Self-Assessment

Science, as I have learned during the beginning of my science methods course, is a reflection of your beliefs and feelings and how you employ and act on those beliefs. I want my students to get out in the world and explore nature- get messy and active. They should be thrilled and motivated to explore the natural and ever-growing world of science, and it is my duty to help  this happen. Teachers are models to our students of curiosity and excitement about how the world functions and develops. 

In my own personal power point on my philosophy of teaching, I would include a personal philosophy statement, which would reflect what I firmly believe about teaching and remain unsure about. This statement will probably change over time, however, it will reflect my feelings and beliefs about teaching and the importance of real experiences in the classroom to help students learn. One quote that I truly love and reflects my opinion and position on teaching is, "Teachers are not in it for the income, they are in it for the outcome." (author unknown). In addition to knowing your positions and beliefs on teaching, it is important to always keep reflecting on your teaching skills and decisions made in the classroom throughout the year. It is important to make sure that how you are teaching students is beneficial to their learning, and is effective in helping them grow. It is important to make sure you are challenging their abilities and thinking, encouraging students to be inquisitive, using good assessments, incorporating technology, and providing time for exploration and explanations. Overall, evaluating your professional growth will allow you to judge the progress you have made over the years and areas you may still need to improve in to become a better educator. 

I believe we certainly teach who we are. This idea was discussed in the beginning of my science methods course and I agreed with this statement then and I agree with it even more now. Your teaching will reflect your beliefs and opinions. For example, if you believe students should learn through true and active experiences, then you will implement teaching methods in your classroom that support this kind of environment. You opinions and  feelings are reflected in your teaching, and students can sense it. Therefore, it is crucial to know who you are- your beliefs, opinions, feelings, ideas- prior to teaching in order to teach effectively and provide an environment suited for growing minds. 

Here's a great website to help you write a teaching philosophy statement: Teaching Philosophy

This week in class, we discussed how to improve and manage our pb works portfolios. This portfolio is a collection of my work and development over the course of my science education class. A great tool and form of assessment to use in my own classroom with my students. A link will be posted here soon once I have completed it!

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