Congratulations to ACES Teacher of the Year Mrs. Mary Harrison

Congratulations to ACES Teacher of the Year Mrs. Mary Harrison
Posted on 05/22/2014

Philosophy of Teaching

“That is what learning is. You suddenly understand something you’ve understood all your life, but in a new way.”

-Doris Lessing

            Teaching is about encouraging curiosity and questioning, and allowing for mistakes to become learning opportunities.  I strive to create a classroom where every student not only feels welcome, but important.  The learning environment should be fun and upbeat, and at the same time posses order.  With a positive learning environment the drive to learn increases. It is also vital for students to have a consistent learning environment, where they know they can rely on their teacher.

Through personal and professional experience, I have learned that each and every student is both similar and different at the same time.  Students share the same potential for academic and social growth.  However, it is the attitude of the students that will make or break their commitment to learning.  The responsibility to do school work and have the drive to learn is up to them.  Learning is all about balance, the teacher has to give, and at the same time the students have to be willing to take in the information and process what the teacher has given them.  Teachers can only teach, students have to do the learning. 

            With that being said, what teachers choose to teach becomes vital in helping students’ growth both academically and socially. I have come to understand that one of my greatest responsibilities, as a teacher, is to understand each of my students’ backgrounds, including their prior knowledge and learning style.  Equipped with this knowledge, I have and will continue to create lessons that will help foster interest in the subject and that can easily be adapted to, during the teaching process, in order to satisfy the students’ different learning styles.  When teachers are open-minded and allow for students to question things that they may not fully understand, it helps to reassure students that the teacher recognizes learning as a top priority. 

            My influence to become the teacher I am today stems from the amazing teachers that I have had throughout my educational experience.  Starting with my second grade teacher, Ms. Apple, all the way to my graduate professor, Dr. Keith, I have been a student in various classroom settings, and have been blessed with exceptional role models.  They have all demonstrated the importance of getting to know your students, and make connections with them, in order to help students feel validated and motivated to learn.  These experiences have reassured me that being a classroom teacher is a profession in which I can have a positive influence on others. 

            - Mrs. Mary Harrison



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