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Philosophy of Education
Transcript of Philosophy of Education
Which Teacher are You?
What do you think?
What is the purpose of education?
What content and skills should schools teach?
How should you teach content?
What is the role of the teacher? The Student?
How should learning be measured?
The truth is I am fed up with testing. I’ll tell you a secret: I don’t much care whether South Korean kids or those at the Country Day School score better than us on those silly multiple choice tests. I’d love to teach important ideas. How about a school where we discuss great books like Moby Dick, The Old Man and the Sea, Plato’s Republic, and Homer’s Illiad - wouldn’t that be intruiging? I want our new charter school to create great minds, not great test scores.
I am so excited! This new charter school can be just what we need, a chance to raise our test scores and reestablish a positive reputation for the quality of public education. It’s all about tough standards and high test scores. Let’s face it, we are competing in a global economy, against nations whose students outscore ours on the standardized tests that matter. it’s embarrassing. I’d love to see a strict code of conduct, demanding math, science, and humanities courses, and NO silly electives. Wouldn’t uniforms be nice?
I agree that we need to move beyond today’s tyranny of testing, but Hemingway and Homer are not the answers. Our job as teachers is to make certain that our students can do well in the real world. Let’s get real. When I was in 8th grade, my class took a 3 week train trip throughout the Midwest. We researched and planned where to go; figured out how to read train schedules; used maps; and ended up learning math, history, geography, and writing. What a great and natural way to learn about the real world.
At last, reality! But there are more pressing social need than a train trip. I want students to do more than simply fit into society. I want them to leave the world a better place than they found it. One out of 6 kids in the US is born into poverty. I want to teach kids to make a difference. Rather than insulate them from real-world problems, we should help our kids develop a social conscience and the political skills needed to improve our society. Teaching in a socially responsible charter school would be my dream.
Everyone in this room has been trying to design a charter school backward! Let’s set aside what we as teachers want and build a school based on what students want. I trust students, and I would give every child an equal voice in decision making. I would like our charter school to help children to reach their personal goals, whatever they are. We have forgotten the purpose of schools: to help students find their way.
Examples of Unique Philosophies