Reflect | Teaching Philosophies – what does teaching mean to you?
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|Book:||Reflect | Teaching Philosophies – what does teaching mean to you?|
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|Date:||Friday, 1 December 2023, 12:25 AM|
1. What is your teaching philosophy?
Do you have a teaching philosophy that underpins your work? Perhaps you have one already, or perhaps you are beginning to consider this in your career now. If you have one already, do you review it, to ensure you are bringing that philosophy or teaching principle to life in your lessons?
On the next few pages we’ll share some teaching philosophies with you. We hope that this sparks some ideas for articulating your own. If you’d like to share your teaching philosophy, we’ve added a padlet on the final page. If you haven’t used padlet before, it’s a bit like an online noticeboard. Click the + at the bottom of the page to write your own post-it. You can ‘like’ other contributions, and comment on them as well.
2. Some example philosophies
We asked teachers what philosophy dominates their teaching, where did this
philosophy come from and how do we, as teachers, make sure we are always
teaching by this philosophy.
"My philosophy is to
enable pupils to engage with music for
their whole lives. I grew up with the Suzuki
method of inclusion through music and I have seen
the power of music and its transformative effects
through my professional playing, teaching and outreach
work. I aim to constantly check that I am doing the
best for individual string players and groups by
weighting my responses and initiatives with
a long-term view in mind while checking
frequently that the learners are
engaged, happy and clear."
"I am not sure I have a
philosophy. I respond to the person
who I am teaching - everyone is different
and brings different issues. I keep learning
myself - reading books, attending
conferences and workshops and of
course, I am also influenced
by my own teachers."
"I try to be direct, clear and yet open to different strategies and approaches. We all learn differently and respond better to subtle behaviours; perhaps some prefer a less intensive, more easy-going pace, while others crave measurable success and are more end-game driven. Only your pupils can say whether you are indeed successful or consistent - but I believe that both the pupil and teacher need to be flexible if what is communicated is to be of lasting value."
"I hope that music-making for life
lies at the heart of my teaching, I can’t think
of anything more important I could give my students.
To pursue a love for music is a lifelong journey of creativity and
skill-development and offers a deep sense of personal fulfilment. I
have been fortunate to have had a number of teachers with differing
styles myself, and to have learned something from each of them; this
philosophy of music first is definitely shared with my most influential
mentors. My family along with my background as a scout taught me
that the more you put in, the more you get out, and I’ve certainly
found this for myself and seen it reflected in my own pupils too.
I don’t know if I consistently teach by these ideas, but
I know that – however long a lesson is – the time
always passes by quickly, for both
pupil and teacher!"
3. Time to reflect
Now it's time to consider your own philosophy as a teacher. Philosophies are not set in stone, they adapt and change just like your teaching, but for many teachers we speak to, there's a core to their philosophy that remains constant.
If you’d like to share your teaching philosophy, we’ve added a padlet on the final page. If you haven’t used padlet before, it’s a bit like an online noticeboard. Click the + at the bottom of the page to write your own post-it. You can ‘like’ other contributions, and comment on them as well, and it's anonymous. We've included some films from some of our Teacher Hub contributors on this padlet for you to watch.