Learning is exploring your curiosities, pursuing your interests, becoming thinkers and applying your knowledge and making meaning out of it in your life.
All genuine learning is active, not passive.
It involves the use of the mind, not just
the memory. It is a process of discovery,
in which the student is the main agent,
not the teacher.
Mortimer J. Adler, The Paideia Proposal
To teach is to aid in development. Teaching is truly an awesome task; a task which comes with numerous rewards but not enough recognition. Teachers have the job of helping children and young adults make the transition to adulthood and independence as smooth as possible. The journey is a long and sometimes difficult one but crucial to the development of the youth.
Children are the heart of schooling and the curriculum should be modeled to fit the children’s interest. I believe teaching must be done in such a manner to captivate students and encourage learning. Teachers need to be ready for all scenarios and prepared to teach and motivate under any condition. The ability to interact with others on a social basis is essential to life. Part of a teacher’s purpose is to aid in the transition from school life to post-school life, be it college, military service, or work. Students may not show emotion, however, I believe students do look up to teachers as role models. A teacher has the challenge of increasing the ability of the student to think critically. Thinking outside the box is an expression and method which should be embraced in the classroom. To encourage students to think of alternative answers or solutions, which vary from the norm or commonly accepted response, and the methods of achieving solutions, promotes creative and critical thinking.
I am a true believer in the statement every student can learn; some learn by more non-traditional means than others. Teachers need to be prepared to modify lessons to adapt to the more non-traditional learners; some may need supplementary materials to grasp a specific concept. Students, like teachers, come in all shapes and sizes and from all walks of life, and teachers need to be aware of and ready to embrace the diversity and culture each person brings to the classroom setting. Regardless of any disability, or any other variables that may vary from socially accepted norm, students are given the opportunity to learn and embrace education which contributes to human development, both physically and intellectually.
Teachers need to realize that each students needs to be evaluated based on his/her own merit is an important thing to remember. Students with or without special needs are students nonetheless. A teacher should use a variety of assessments to see the student’s progress. When the teacher assesses the students, they realize that students are not at the same pace. The teacher must know the learning styles of all their students and plan accordingly to give every student a fair chance to learn.
As a teacher, I need to be sure my lesson plans and material is conveyed in such a manner that allows each student and type of learner, the ability to grasp the concept. I will embrace and learn from diversity brought into the classroom and I will do my best to guide students through their education and help them get the most of the time spent in a learning environment. I will attempt to teach students that every day of their lives, every new opportunity confronted, and even disappointments, serve as tools for learning and enlightenment. If I change or impact the life of just one student, I, as a teacher, have succeeded.