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Teaching Philosophy...

"We know who we are, but know not what we may be."

-Hamlet, Act IV, sc.5

At the core of my teaching philosophy is a strong dedication to something, seemingly obvious enough - inspiring thought. Assisting and exposing students to the full creative potential of their minds is the most important task any teacher can aspire to complete for each classroom. Through diverse and interactive curriculum planning and thought provoking and relevant questioning, I believe it is possible to ignite a fire for learning in each and every student, regardless of what they bring to the classroom. 

"Every why hath a wherefore."

-The Comedy of Errors, Act II, sc. 2

Every good teacher must also be a good learner. It is exceedingly important that teachers understand and inform themselves of the goals and needs of each of their students. I do not believe an educator can effectively teach and gain their student's trust by living solely in front of the classroom on the other side of an impenetrable glass wall. As a teacher, my interests need to go where my students' ambitions lie. Whether I enjoy football, chess matches, or choral concerts is irrelevant if these are the things that bring joy to my students' lives and keep them in school. I believe I have a responsibility to actively support these endeavors and develop, not only learners in my classroom, but also in life and community. The teachers that left the greatest impact on me were the ones that went to my shows, facilitated the clubs I was involved with, and in general, kept me engaged in my education. 

Thoughts are but dreams till their effects be tried.

-The Rape of Lucrece

As a theatre educator, I can effectively teach students life skills through subtle exercises that will advance them in their personal lives. Whether it be learning to tie a tie through scene work, doing an interview from the perspective of a  character, or building confidence through group collaboration: creativity is crucial in theatre which results in learning lifelong lessons. Students learn real quick in theatre that it is NOT about perfection, but about progression. The various facets of the theatre allow for diversified planning for each and every student in the theatre regardless of supposed strengths or weaknesses. 

How far that little candle throws his beams!

So shines a good deed in a naughty world.

-The Merchant of Venice, Act V, sc. 1.

I do not believe in "bad kids". I do, however, believe that there are unfortunate circumstance that shape the choices and actions of students that impact their behavior in the classroom negatively. Nonetheless, there are some basic steps that can be taken to skew poor classroom habits. By creating a nurturing environment for students, clearly communicating expectations, allowing students to play a role in establishing and implementing rules, and consistent routine, a teacher can temper  behavioral challenges in the classroom.