MissProfe is reflecting on her role in the classroom after reading Kelly Christopherson’s post about the same topic. Although I left a comment for MissProfe I wanted to post it here because I realized that I’m not just a teacher, I’m three teachers: I’m a technology teacher, an international school teacher and a middle school teacher. All three roles are wrapped up into one position, but they can have different objectives. It’s all about the balance.
From a tech teacher’s point of view:
I always like to say that I teach students how to learn with technology. It doesn’t really matter to me if they become the all-time expert on whatever tool we’re working with at the moment – after all, what are the chances that they’ll be using the exact same tool, same version, 5 years from now? All that matters to me is that they can learn how to use the next tool that will be developed, and the tool after that, and the ones we never dreamed would be possible.
From an international school teacher’s point of view:
We have so much transition in the international school classroom, both students and teachers rotating in and out. All I want is for students that leave my classroom to feel comfortable and confident with technology. They don’t have to be the best, they just know that they can tackle the next challenge that comes along – with the next teacher, in the next school, in the next country.
From a middle school teacher’s point of view:
I want students to have fun, to be excited, to be interested in learning more, to enjoy technology as part of their daily life. To me, middle school is about exposure to new skills and possibilities, about enthusing students in areas they may not be naturally interested, and showing them different ways to learn and have fun. I’m a cheerleader for technology.
I realize that pretty much everything I’ve written here is already stated in my teaching philosophy. Everything I do in the classroom is shaped by my understanding and my belief in my role as an educator, but I rarely think about that philosophy – I just do it. In fact, just about the only time I really think about my philosophy of education is during recruiting season.
We international school teachers go recruiting quite frequently, sometimes as frequently as every other year. Every time we attend a job fair we are meeting with administrators from around the globe that only have a few days in which to process our potential for their school. We are anxious to share everything there is to know about our teaching style, philosophy, objectives, experience and interests in a short (usually 20 minute) interview. I think next time I should just say I’m the best value: hire one, get three!
Image 1: http://www.bolton.ac.uk/learning/images/hand_globe.jpg