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Samantha King

Personal Philosophy

The role of a preschool teacher is very complex and vital. The educators role

is to know each child individually on a deep level and plan for experiences and

activities that will meet the childs needs and interests. The educator must be

mindful of the activities planned and must tailor each one to benefit all children in

the room, not just one. A preschool teacher must be intentional- meaning

everything that is done has been carefully thought out, planned, and is

developmentally appropriate. I believe that children need more self-lead activities

than teacher-led activities. Teachers must not force children to move to new

developmental levels, but be patient and let them develop at their own pace. When

the child is ready to move on developmentally, it is should be evident in the childs

actions. For this reason, teachers must allow children to construct their knowledge

through experiences that happened throughout the day, especially during play. I

agree with Jean Piagets theory of cognitive development that children learn about

the world around them through their senses and by interacting with the

environment. (McLeod, 2015) Teachers should be present and involved in play,

looking for teachable moments for children to learn something new. It is equally

important that educators know it is best to let the child discover on their own at

times because it means they are building their knowledge by interacting with the

environment around them. A preschool teacher must know how discern when to let

the child discover on their own and when to step in. This means a preschool teacher

must be a professional- one of the most important characteristics to have.

I am a firm believer that children learn best when they are directly involved

and are interested in the topic. Therefore, all activities, lessons, and curriculum
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must be based around the interests and needs of each child. Children have an

inborn desire and need to discover the world around them using all their senses. For

this reason, the activities need to hands-on and available for the children to explore

and discover both on their own and with the teacher. Since every child learns

differently, it is important that many activities and experiences be provided in a

variety of ways to make sure all children are receiving the highest level of learning.

The educator must provide many materials, both closed and open-ended, to the

environment for the children to explore, discover, and experiment with. Every day,

children will build upon their former knowledge both on their own and with teacher

interaction.

A preschool teacher must make her classroom warm and inviting of all,

regardless of different personalities, learning styles, special needs, and cultural

diversity. I believe that the problem lies in the heart. A preschool teacher must have

it made up in her heart that she will love every child equally no matter what. I

understand that there will be trying times, but I also understand that these times

will mold me into a better teacher. Regardless of how a child acts, I will teach them

the correct way. If there is a wrong thought, idea, or assumption of others in myself,

I will make sure I continue to learn the correct way. Children with disabilities will be

welcome in the classroom from the very beginning. I will make sure the

environment is safe and accessible to all children. Partnering with others will help

me make sure I am meeting every childs needs in the class. If a child needs special

assistance, an assistant will be provided. No obstacle should stand in the way of a

preschool teacher who loves and wants the best for all her children.

Proper decision making about curriculum is a vital component of being a

preschool teacher. Through my own studies, I have learned that basing the
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curriculum around the child is very effective. According to Infants, Toddlers, and

Caregivers: A Curriculum of Respectful, Responsive, Relationship-Based Care and

Education, Curriculum is not just a book of lessons plans or activities for the day, a

month, or a year. Curriculum for children must first be thought of as caregiving.

(Gonzalez-Mena, 2015) I believe that before any child can learn, their basic needs

must be met through caregivers and routines. By interacting with children through

caregiving routines, children will learn that you can be trusted and will form a

secure attachment. This belief is in congruence will Maslows hierarchy of human

needs. It is the job of the educator to think of caregiving routines as curriculum and

strive to gain trust of the children every day so the child forms a secure attachment

and learns.

Preschool teachers must be aware that conflict is likely to arise. It is the job of

the teacher to make sure conflicts are managed in the classroom professionally.

Children will be expected to listen and display good behavior in the classroom. The

educator must work with the children to create positive classroom rules and

behaviors that all who enter will follow after. If any child is to disobey the rules, the

teacher must talk with the child individually about what happened, what they are

feeling, and what they should do next time. I believe in discipline, but I mean it in

the very context of the word. Teachers must disciple and teach the children the way

to act. A preschool teacher must model good behavior at all times and always

acknowledge the childs efforts to follow and try to follow the classroom rules.

A childs biggest influence comes from their family. For this reason, I believe

that it is the job of the educator to involve the family in their childs education.

Teachers should stay in frequent contact with families through daily conversations

during drop-off and pick-up, texts, calls, e-mails, and meetings. The teacher should
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get to know each family and figure out which mean of communication works best

for them. Teachers need to keep the families updated and involved- meaning parent

events are planned and parents are welcomed to help in the classroom. It is my

understanding that most families want to be involved but they just do not know how

to. The educator must step in and encourage the families that they are welcomed

and appreciated in their childs education. Partnerships are key in early childhood

education. Whether teachers are working with parents, assistants, or other

professionals, they need to remember that they cannot do it alone. The old African

proverb, it takes a village to raise a child, cannot ring more true in early childhood

education.
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References

A. (1998, November). 'It takes avillage to raise a child.' - Igbo and Yoruba

(Nigeria) Proverb. Retrieved April 05, 2017, from http://www.afriprov.org/african-

proverb-of-the-month/23-1998proverbs/137-november-1998-proverb.html

Gonzalez-Mena, J., & Eyer, D. W. (2015). Infants, Toddlers, and Caregivers: A

Curriculum of Respectful, Responsive, Relationship-Based Care and Education. New

York, NY: McGraw-Hill Education. (Page 26).

McLeod, S. (1970, January 01). Jean Piaget | Cognitive Theory of

Development. Retrieved April 05, 2017, from

https://www.simplypsychology.org/piaget.html