My educational philosophy is influenced by a quote from Sydney J. Harris “the whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows”. Education has always been very important to me. I am a lifelong learner who will continually seek to understand, explore and share. I expand my learning through research, experience and by interacting with others. This educational statement is separated into three sections: teaching and learning, mathematics education, and global education.
Teaching and learning:
As for me, teaching provides a continuous opportunity to learning as well as a continuous challenge. It should never be static. The dynamic nature of teaching and learning presents excitement and fulfillment to me as an educator.
Every classroom and school presents and represents a unique community of learners that is varied in learning styles and cultures, habits, and minds. I owe it to my students, colleagues, school, community, and society, to bring consistency, diligence, and respect to my work in the hope that I can ultimately be a role model of such traits in the youth as well. An open mind, a positive attitude, and high expectations are crucial qualities to have each and every day in the classroom.
Specifically, across disciplines, it is most significant to be able to explain your thinking and process than simply getting the task/problem correct. Students should be able to think critically as a method of inquiry.
As a mathematics educator:
I am invested in the educational process, particularly secondary education. My area of expertise is mathematics education. I believe mathematics can and should allow one to think logically and gain the ability to problem solve. A student will be exposed to multiple ways to approach and solve problems. My practice embodies the ancient Chinese proverb:
不闻不若闻之，闻之不若见之； Tell me, I forget.
见之不若知之，知之不若行之； Show me, I remember.
学至于行而止矣。 Involve me, I understand.
In my classroom, concepts are introduced as often as possible using a variety representations such as geometric (i.e. graph), analytic (i.e. formula), numeric (i.e. table) and physical (i.e. manipulative).
One of main objectives is to be adept in my questioning techniques in the teaching of mathematics. When I work with students, I am supportive of their ideas and welcome and encourage their participation. This demands that the classroom is a safe learning environment which is essential for students to develop confidence to enter into interaction. Even mathematical errors when shared can provide springboards into unique learning opportunities for the entire classroom.
As a global educator:
I aspire to working both formally (in school) and informally (after-school or community based) as an educator. As we move forward in the 21st century, improvements are needed in the following areas: equity, social justice, and in our ability to promote sustainable development and international peace. To facilitate in this goal, educational and social institutions of all levels, are essential in global transformation.
I have a strong commitment to traveling, exploring, and broadening my understanding of the world and its people. I have lived most of my life in the United States of America and have experienced other cultures having traveled (for at least one month) to Jamaica, Honduras, Panama, Hungary and Colombia. As an international educator, I offer diversity with character, understanding and tolerance. Educational communities should provide mutual economic and social benefits to our global society.