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  • Standard 6

    2010 - 10.24

    A. As a teacher, I understand the “structure, function, purpose, and value of education and schools in a free, democratic, and pluralistic society.”  Education is absolutely central to a society that calls itself free, democratic, and pluralistic.  Knowledge is such a powerful tool, and providing opportunities for all people to learn is part of what makes this country free.  I am thrilled to be a part of a profession which makes this learning possible, and which can help enforce the notion of the importance of education and its place in American society.

    B. In a constantly changing society, educational policies and foundational understandings are constantly evolving.  I believe that it is the role of a teacher to remain open to these changes.  A teacher who is unable to adapt and modify her instruction is a teacher who fails.  Part of the challenge of teaching is understanding that it is a profession that is constantly adjusting and evolving.  If a teacher is to teach her students effectively, she must be constantly learning more about her craft, including the new research and policies which inform her practice.  At the same time, I believe that it is also important for teachers to adjust their instruction while also staying true to their identities as educators.  This is the true challenge; to make changes as needed to teach in the most effective (and legally supported) manner possible, while maintaining ones’ identity and philosophy, again making changes as necessary.

    C. Most of my involvement in the Albion community during my time at Albion College had to do with the public schools.  One organization with which I became involved is the AVID tutoring program, which was launched in the fall of 2009 in the Albion middle school and high school grades.  This program focused on helping students to learn the study skills necessary to reach their potential, with the eventual intent of helping learners realize their college goals.  I received training in this program and worked in a middle school classroom on a weekly basis for a semester.  This opportunity and others for community involvement really opened my eyes to the difference organizations can make in a struggling community.  It was a rewarding and enriching experience.

    Please click here to view my resume, in which I denote all of the diverse experiences that I have had working in the Albion community and others.

    D.  I also believe in the power of “using community and home resources to enhance school programs and instruction.”  I am a fervent supporter of involving parents and guardians in the classroom.  I have striven to make connections to the parents of my learners, perhaps most explicitly in my Professional Internship.  I wrote numerous letters home, in which my mentor teacher and I informed parents and guardians of classroom activities and progress and invited them to be a part of their learners’ progress.  I also participated in several conferences, in which my mentor teacher and I spoke to parents and guardians about their student’s learning, and discussed classroom and at-home behaviors to support that learning.

    E.  Unfortunately, I have not had many opportunities to “design learning activities for students that involve volunteer groups, civic and social organizations, and relevant public service agencies.”  The only instance in which I worked with students in a volunteer capacity was during my Boundary Crossings Into Elementary Schools (Maymester) experience.  Under the direction of the Citizens to Beautify Albion in Albion, MI, the students in my field placement classroom worked to plant flowers in an effort to beautify the city.  It was a rewarding experience for my learners, and was a great learning moment for me as well.

    F. In my work during the professional semester, I took part in multiple meetings in which “professional educators school personnel, and other stakeholders in collaborative and cooperative planning, decision-making, and implementation” worked “to improve educational systems at all levels.”  Though I was not particularly active in these discussions, it was nevertheless an important experience for me to witness the manner with which educational decisions are made, and the many complications therein.

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