Recent Issues in Education

February 2, 2014

After reading this weeks chapters a thought kept coming to mind, the more things change the more they stay the same. I don’t know who said it, it is just something I have heard my entire life. I believe that as education evolves it tends to play catch up to a world that is growing and evolving at a rapid pace. While the foundation of education is deeply rooted in history it is based off of several valid models.

 

One of those models was developed by Dr. Maria Montessori. Dr. Montessori developed her program after researching Itard and Seguin. Montessori felt that children “posses an inner need to work at what interests them” (Ornstein, Levine, Gutek, & Vocke, 2014, p. 122). The activities were based upon three types “practical, sensory, and formal skills and studies” (p.122). Montessori was a pioneer in early education and through her work it has been determined that “early childhood education has a highly formative power over a person’s adult development” (p. 123).

Another foundation of education today is based upon Jean Piaget findings. Both Piaget and Montessori based their findings upon observations and believed they had discovered how children process and develop their ideas and findings. Piaget found that there were four stages of cognitive development and growth. The stages are sensorimotor stage, preoperational stage, concrete-operational period and formal-operational period. Piaget felt that “early-childhood and elementary education should be based on how children develop and act on their own thinking and learning processes” (p. 125)

 

I think that the way education has developed with No Child Left Behind, we have forgotten the way children learn and have gotten away for the some of the most basic needs that children need in order to learn. According to Dewey, “departure from the old solves no problems” (Dewey,J., p.25). I feel that we need to do more to help students learn in a nurturing environment that does not inhibit their learning and encourages growth through education.  I think that by knowing and understanding the basic principles and applying some proven and innovative techniques that bring in new ideas and technologies is a good solid foundation to build a classroom around.

Dewey, J. (1997). Experience and education. New York: Simon & Schuster.

Introduction to Montessori and the Montessori Foundation. (2009, April 12). YouTube. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7a3Br6kPbU

Ornstein, A. C., Levine, D. U., Gutek, G. L., & Vocke, D. E. (2014). Foundations of education (12th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

Categories: Foundations of American Education.

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Teaching Philosophy EDCI 506

January 26, 2014

My teaching philosophy is not unique and has been evolving over the past year. As I evolve and learn more and experience more in the classroom, my philosophy is developing and morphing into what I feel is a progressive attitude in education. One of my first thoughts is that your students should know what to expect from you and by this I mean that you have to be honest and reliable. Students need to know that they can count on you, they need to know the boundaries of the classroom environment, and they need to know that they can trust you and believe in you. I have secondary level students and at this point I expect them to be reliable and honest and it is only fair that I return that expectation. This is expected of them in the real world, according to Dewey (1938/1997) the objective is to prepare students for the real world and their responsibilities (p.18). Building on this expectation I try and bring them real world information to enhance that of the SOL standards and bring the information together so they are tied together and have a practical application. Since “teachers are the agents through which knowledge and skills are communicated” (p.18) it is our responsibility to develop and encourage a stronger and more developed learning environment for our students. I tend to treat my students as my children and I want the best for them and high expectations for them. I realize that they are not all on the same level and encourage them according to their abilities. I also encourage some of the higher functioning students to take the lower levels students under their wing and help them flourish.

While this is only a portion of my philosophy I want to focus on the reading from Experience and Education. You would think that after years and years of research, practice, and development; education is not any better off than it was fifty years ago. I think that we have developed some amazing practices, delivery methods that are interactive, great evidence based practices, and new methods and practices for dealing with behavioral issues. Why do we find it so difficult to pull all of the wonderful things that are developing in education and implement them in schools and turn around the declining trends? I think we should be able to put our personal interest aside and get together and build a strong solid foundation for implementing functional and effective educational practices and standards for our students and stop thinking that all students are meant to be scholars and provide students with the education that functions best for them and the many levels of students that are in our schools.

I will finish by saying that the main goal of my philosophy is to provide my students with a solid foundation of knowledge to help prepare them for their individual future and I feel that while not all students will attend college I think that we should provide them the opportunity to excel and prosper in their career choice.

 

Dewey, J. (1997). Experience & Education. New York, NY. Simon & Schuster. (Original work published 1938).

Categories: Foundations of American Education.

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