As for me, I knew from a very young age that I wanted to become a teacher. My parents even bought me a toy blackboard and a pointer for my imaginary classes. It was a very absorbing experience for me, which I still find so fascinating that I decided to make educating my profession. It is important to keep in mind that being a tutor is a responsible task that requires discipline and continuous self-development and education. Teachers need to present knowledge in a clear and exciting way for students to show good results. They should be empathetic as students have troubles of their own and sometimes need help. Moreover, a tutor must never take out their problems on students or treat them biased and even more so, it is unacceptable to judge students by their appearance.
In my opinion, teaching approaches should always be student-oriented to serve the crucial purpose of not only providing knowledge but also cultivating curiosity and growth in students. That is why I find the theory of progressivism most appealing and appropriate for integrating into classes. According to this theory, children have a natural desire to learn and investigate the world around them (Martin & Jorgensen, 2018). They also have certain needs that evoke interest and help them solve their problems and fulfill their desires. A teacher uses children’s preferences to allow them to acquire the skills that will help them meet their current demands and wishes. This is the most effective way of teaching as it makes them want to study rather than force them to do it. Therefore, I would make the phrase “do not force but guide” as my teaching practice motto.
One of the biggest challenges I have discovered is not to impose your own opinion on students. Dealing with mistakes plays one of the most important roles here. A teacher should not evaluate the students’ speculations. They should address the class repeatedly and ask if learners agree with the idea or not and why. In this way, students learn to analyze mistakes—both their own and those of their classmates. Through mistakes and failures, they come to the right decisions and gain knowledge. Thus, acquiring more information and educating myself in self-discipline and democratic teaching methods are the areas I will need to work on further. The philosophy of progressive education applies perfectly to this process as well. It gives students the freedom to investigate and assume, lessening the teacher’s full authority and complete judgment.
In addition to the theory that I have chosen for my practice as the most effective and desirable, I learned some important ideas throughout the course that I will implement in the future. For example, the concepts of constructivism that imply learning through personal experience strongly resonated with me. This philosophy’s key idea lies in that knowledge cannot be given to the student in a ready-made form. A teacher can only create favorable conditions for successful self-construction and self-growth of students’ knowledge. It made me think of the ways I can attempt to introduce them to my classes. They might be creating tasks that imply critical thinking in solving real-life problems and taking part in experiments with further discussing the outcomes and issues that students encountered along the way.
To conclude, I believe that the philosophy of progressivism will be the most effective in my practice as it helps keep students motivated, gives them perspective on the studies and their practical objective. Additionally, constructivism ideas will be of great use when cultivating critical thinking and creativity in students. After all, teaching is a complex process that requires responsibility and applying different techniques to make an actual difference in students’ knowledge and vision of the world. Being a professional who teaches, assesses, and understands must be of high priority to those who have chosen this profession as their lifelong purpose.
Martin, J., & Jorgensen, E. (2018). School was our life: Remembering progressive education. Indiana University Press.