Reflective Teaching Day 18: My teaching is…

Create a metaphor/simile/analogy that describes your teaching philosophy. For example, a “teacher is a ________…”

As a teacher, I am a guide.

That’s it. I don’t want to (I can’t be) the ultimate authority on my subject. I don’t want to be the only exposure students have to Spanish. I want them to learn words I don’t know, from sources other than me. I want to offer them advice on how to learn, where to go, and what they will find there. I want to guide their acquisition of knowledge, and I want to start them on a journey that, I hope, will last long after they’ve left my classroom.

I also want them to be comprehensible to other Spanish speakers. I want them to make mistakes and learn from them. I want them to grow in what they can say and the tasks they can accomplish with their Spanish. And that’s where I come in. Could they learn lists and lists of discrete Spanish words and phrases on their own? Sure. But it’s my job to help them put those words in context, use them appropriately, and improve in their ability to connect with speakers of a language that is not their own.

But I don’t want to be the answer key, or the only one offering ideas and information in class. I don’t want to be the only one who has a say in what we do today. I want them to become the masters of their own language acquisition, with some guidance and direction from a seasoned adviser.

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