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Hera's teaching portfolio 2005

My Educational Philosophy

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*Here is my educational philosophy, created for and inspired by my amazing students, who have given me the opportunity to teach, learn, love, and reflect upon the most important aspects in education. Thank you!______________________________________________

My past experiences have led me down some very interesting paths. I've seen the inner and outer workings of the educational system. I think if there is anything that has helped me understand myself as an educator and what it is to teach, it would have to be my own experiences as a student, and the negative criticism I had about my teachers. The lack of support I received from so many teachers is what made me want to compensate for all the areas in which they lacked. I lucked out in finding one teacher who believed in me, someone to push me in the right direction. Therefore, I hold firmly in the belief that my students will learn best when given the opportunity to apply their strengths and abilities towards useful and pertinent situations, and when given the chance to succeed and to dream.

I hold very high expectations to my students. The faith that I have in their ability to succeed is what motivates them not only to do well in my class, but to achieve other goals outside of the classroom. We as teachers, have the power to be an inspiration and a part of their support system. We as teachers, have the ability to influence our students in a positive way, and give them an education on life, hope, and the skills to cope with everyday situations.

Now that I have been given the opportunity to teach, I view myself as an important part of their support system. I am constantly making revisions on my teaching skills and learning each day with my students. I am their personal guide to help build dreams, gain experience and do great things, and I take great pride in that. I strive to be an inspiration to them, a source of information, a relief from their daily stresses, a role model, and an educator. I want to reach out to my students and motivate them the way I was motivated by that one teacher. I want them to know that everyone possesses inside them the ability to shine. Everyone needs to feel special. Teenagers need someone to direct them, broaden their horizons, encourage them to succeed, and dream great things. 

That is what I would like to accomplish as a Spanish teacher. I want to expose my students to new ideas, cultures, and ways of thinking that they might otherwise miss out on. I want to give them an opportunity to better themselves, to want to learn, and not be afraid to meet their goals and constantly dream up new ones. That is what I will accomplish as a teacher.

 

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UNDIVIDED ATTENTION
By: Taylor Mali
 
A grand piano wrapped in quilted pads by movers,
tied up with canvas straps --- like classical music's
birthday gift to the insane ---
is gently nudged without it's legs
out an eighth floor window on 62nd Street.
 
It dangles in April air from the neck of the mover's crane,
Chopin-shiny black lacquer squares
and dirty white crisscross patterns hanging like the second-to-last
note of a concerto played on the edge of the seat,
the edge of tears, the edge of eight stories up going over, and
I'm trying to teach math in the building across the street.
 
Who can teach when there are such lessons to be learned?
All of the greatest common factors are delivered by
long-necked cranes and flatbed trucks
or come through everything, even air.
Like snow.
 
See, snow falls for the first time every year, and every year
my students rush to the window
as if snow were more interesting than math,
which, of course, it is.
 
So please.
 
Let me teach like a Steinway,
spinning slowly in April air,
so almost-falling, so hinderingly
dangling from the neck of the mover's crane.
So on the edge of losing everything.
 
Let me teach like the first snow, falling.

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"Education's purpose is to replace an empty mind with an open one."
--Malcolm Forbes
 
"Though much is taken, much abides; and though
We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven; that which we are, we are;
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield."
-Tennyson