Personal Philosophy, Part 4 – The Curriculum, The Classroom

The Curriculum

We should teach the students in our schools about life.  We should teach them the basics of math, English, social science, and science, but also about physical education and health.  We need to strengthen our children’s talents as well as their weaknesses by allowing them courses and other opportunities to pursue those passions.  I think that content should be analyzed for what will be necessary to use in the real world and how it will be applied beyond the walls of the classroom. Curriculum should be selected based on relevance to the teachers, students, and the school.  Will it teach goals that are designed for students?  Will it encourage and support the 21st century learner?  Does it challenge students to think critically?  Questions like these support progressivism and constructivism in that they emphasize real-life problem solving and critical thinking in the curriculum (Liepolt, 2004).

The Classroom

In the classroom, I value organization, planning, honesty, ambition, collaboration, and respect.  For these reasons, my classroom will be neat and orderly with aligned seats; clean without clutter and with organized walls; structured with an agenda and always planned ahead of time for my students and myself; reflective of what will be taught and learned so that students know what is expected of them; representative of student accomplishments and progress; split into teams and groups for group work or pair work; and a safe place for students to share, answer, and propose questions without scrutiny from peers or the teacher.  Collaboration and student questioning are both supportive of constructivism according to Liepolt (2004).

In terms of discipline, I think students should be respectful of a teacher, and a teacher should be respectful of students.  Classroom rules should be simple and easy to follow with consequences that are easy to implement and simple for students to memorize.  That way students and teacher know what is expected and know what the expectations look like.

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