Do you have a teaching philosophy? Do you need one? What about the resources you incorporate in homeschooling--do they have a teaching philosophy?
A teaching philosophy is typically driven by worldview thinking. A worldview drives how we see and interpret reality; it's how we make sense of things. Presuppositions come into play, too. These are assumptions that are foundational to our thinking.
Sonlight President Sarita Holzmann recently shared two presuppositions or "underlying assumptions about education" that we have at Sonlight: 1. Education should help children develop their gifts and become equipped to do whatever God calls them to do to further His Kingdom; and 2. Every child is naturally curious and can love to learn. Education should help nurture that love to learn.
As an educator I've taken time to consider my teaching philosophy, which is centered on my Christian worldview. This leads me to seek to equip, edify, educate, and encourage students to seek God's calling in their life and apply their beliefs practically and reasonably in all they do. I hope to develop ambassadors for the cause of Christ who will intelligently engage culture.
Recently on a radio program I was asked to discuss a film and its implications in relation to Christianity. When the host asked me about the movie, I mentioned that we need to keep in mind that every form of media we encounter has one or more underlying worldviews guiding it, whether it's film, television, books, art, music, etc. This applies to educational materials, too.
Having a teaching philosophy helps us understand our approach and identify alternative views. It can help us stay on track and remember our overall goal. Take some time to think about the teaching philosophy that guides you, as well as the educational resources you use. What are the assumptions guiding the material? Do you agree or disagree with the approach? Even if you disagree with some points, how can you turn your disagreement into a learning opportunity for yourself and your children?
So, what's your teaching philosophy? Let us know in the comments section!