As a teacher, I value cooperation and hold respect for my students. I believe that they need encouragement and engagement to achieve the goals, and forcing them to participate in the process will not bring the desired results. I view being in a diverse classroom from early years as the key to accepting “others” in maturity. Many aspects of one’s behavior are cultivated and facilitated by the teacher, who should be a role model above all. This belief defines my values and opinions of what the educational process should be and guides me through the job’s challenges.
An early childhood educator is an important figure in a child’s life. Aside from providing knowledge to students, one should facilitate their socialization, transmit universal and national values, and ensure their safety. A teacher is obliged to employ age-appropriate materials and seek guidance from colleagues in complicated situations. One is also responsible for engaging and encouraging students and occasionally chiding them, although the latter requires a certain approach that does not affect a learner’s developing individuality and self-esteem. An early educator should create a welcoming atmosphere which would remind learners of home and make them derive enjoyment or other positive emotions from discovering something new.
A student is an active member of the educational process, meaning that they are also responsible for achieving the set goals. As the teacher creates a fruitful environment, the learners make use of it to gain knowledge, acquire certain values, and cooperate with each other. They view the educator as a significant figure in their lives but do not perform various activities to impress them due to understanding the importance of knowledge. Another crucial aspect is the students accepting the rules without additional incentives. However, as the children are young, their actual role will depend on how successfully the educator organizes the classroom.
Diversity and inclusion are some of today’s education’s pillars, and one should consider them necessities rather than challenges. A special needs student may require more efforts devoted to their socialization and learning, and an educator’s duty is to spare no resources to make them feel welcome and accepted as an equal member of the classroom. The same logic partially applies to ethnic/racial minorities and immigrants, who should feel as if they are full-fledged members of the group. Inclusion and diversity from an early age may result in one treating those unlike themselves as equals, creating a non-discriminatory society. Some might be taught different values at home, so it is essential for the teacher to prevent potential attacks on a student’s identity.
Other than organizing the classroom, an educator manages it throughout the whole learning process. I will apply the strategies that are consistent with my philosophy, primarily focusing on engagement, cooperation through making small groups and pairs, and task variety. If someone misbehaves, the best countermeasure will be to challenge the student on the understanding of the rules and the material to make them reassess the priorities. More serious conflicts may arise between the students, and the teacher should attempt to resolve them without involving external parties. However, if such a development is impossible, the parents will be called to discuss the issue. While it is important for the educator to remain impartial, one side might have hurt the other, so the focus should be on undoing the damage.
I appreciate parents taking an interest in their children’s learning progress and seek more opportunities to involve them. While Parent Visiting Days, Mother’s Day, and other cultural occasions and events will cover the majority of family inclusion, I am not against letting them be at a student’s side or filming classes for their review. The main challenges are to coordinating the time to avoid situations when no one accompanies a child on a Visitation Day and explaining to learners why a parent is present during a class. Otherwise, family inclusivity can be harmful by creating ostracized students.
In teaching, I am guided by such values as equality, integrity, dignity, and benevolence. Equality means that I do not consider myself superior to students because I am older and more knowledgeable; we both possess rights and responsibilities. Integrity implies that I transmit genuine information from legitimate sources and expect my students to be honest while performing tasks. Dignity is respecting every person in the educational system regardless of their identity and promoting the behavior in the classroom. Lastly, benevolence means that I am kind and understanding in my conduct, teach humanist values, and view the job in a positive light rather than a burden. I believe these values can greatly enhance teaching and allow me to raise conscientious persons.
Every student learns differently, and an educator should accommodate the material to their preferred styles. Some are prone to obtain information from visual sources, such as pictures, and others require it to be spoken; meanwhile, using both channels is not uncommon. (Thepsatitporn & Pichitpornchai, 2016). According to other classifications, one may also prioritize understanding over perception (Truong, 2016). A game-based approach can enhance the experience for young learners regardless of how they interact with the material (Taspinar et al., 2016). Overall, the teacher should identify each student’s style and present data in a way that would be accessible to everyone, even if duplication is necessary.
A teacher without defined values and views on the educational process is difficult to imagine. Some may prefer to use various references to guide them and treat the job strictly as a means of income-making. They are not less of a teacher than I am, but their indifferent approach is likely to affect young learners. An educator should be passionate and do everything in children’s interests.
Taspinar, B., Schmidt, W., & Schuhbauer, H. (2016). Gamification in education: A board game approach to knowledge acquisition. Procedia Computer Science, 99, 101–116. Web.
Thepsatitporn, S., & Pichitpornchai, C. (2016). Visual event-related potential studies supporting the validity of VARK learning styles’ visual and read/write learners. Advances in Physiology Education, 40(2), 206–212. Web.
Truong, H. M. (2016). Integrating learning styles and adaptive e-learning system: Current developments, problems and opportunities. Computers in Human Behavior, 55, 1185–1193. Web.