Why I Teach

My Teaching Philosophy

My teaching style is fluid and adaptive for each child but firm on universal ethics and standards. I borrow from perennialism the importance of focus on an individual's personal development, however I am overall progressive with how I teach. I feel the classroom should be student-centered rather than teacher-centered. I will have an emphasis on learning-by-doing and work on the development of social skills and good mental health by having a integrated curriculum and inclusive group setting. High school students seek to individualize, but ironically stick to cliques of focused interests. to have an inclusive community I would routinely move seats or set up group involvement activities where students have the comfortable space to meet new people and explore diverse perspectives without any social pressure. With this set up, I seek to inspire social responsibility and ideals of democracy that I believe to be lifelong lessons.
Art today is not about the product but the process. It is the exploration of ourselves and the spaces we occupy. Art is about further expanding upon the question set up by Marcel Duchamp; "What is art?" Art should be this space that is not limited and where everything is allowed, but not free from debate. Something that is lacking in the art world that I stride to ensure in my classroom is safety to explore any mentality. I want to create an environment that is open to all geniuses and where superiorities won't be tolerated. I am to work with students not command them, and help prescribe them with methodologies that will impart them about universal themes of acceptance and human development.
The man who inspired me to pursue teaching was my high school art teacher. Although intimidating at first, he never made you feel inferior in mind or skill. He heard every word you said and legitimized any idea you had, never directing you to abandon a project but probed at your idea in order to spark a more conscious understanding of your curiosities. He had a whole library of books about artists and theories that he wold direct you to but wouldn't stop there. He challenged us to think like real artists, making us read 'Waiting for Godot' at 16 years old and directed us to question the purpose of art. Truthfully, I was able to understand my gender and my insecurities because of his deep knowledge and his individualized outreach to each student.
By having my philosophy rooted in progressive education I am focused on present experience. I want students to participate in conversations that will help them relate to one another and have them comfortably explore their personal values. The act of creating explores a lot of humans' behaviors and prepares children for life after grade school. Understanding and action are the goals of teaching and that is what I solely see as art's function - a space to explore yourself, the questions you have, and how you are to grow. 


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