Mr. William Schmidt
In my philosophy of education the are three ideas that I always hope to be able to include in a successful lesson. Multiculturalism is important as our country becomes more diverse. Interdisciplinary collaboration can be helpful for students to use prior knowledge in a new lesson. Third, it is important for a student to feel responsible for themselves and their education.
I feel it is a necessity to introduce my students to other cultures and their art. For most students it is not probable that they will be able to travel to witness these other cultures until they become adults. I believe it can benefit our students to see that there is more out there than the narrow environment of the city. It is important to include cultural backgrounds within art lessons so they can get a preview of the bigger world.
As an art teacher I make an effort to relate my lessons to other disciplines. In my figure drawing lessons, I am able to bring in the biology aspect of the study of the skeleton. I require my students to learn many of the major bones within the skeleton. More than once I have helped a student who didn't quite comprehend information from another class when I was able to share it with them in another way.
I also believe that students deserve to make some decisions about the classes that they take, and also about what they will learn in those classes. They should be allowed to have a part in determining the projects that they will complete. It is important to have a part in developing the rubrics that will decide what grade that they will receive from those projects. Of course, I will need to have the final decision on some matters to make sure that the quality of the educational experience will be ensured. High school students are old enough to desire some adult responsibility. They seek to make some decisions and take responsibility for those decisions. They desire a structure in their lives that they can take an active part in. I find the students are always curious as to what the next project is that they will be doing. Many of them like to make suggestions as to what projects we should do. I feel to some degree, that a teacher can offer a number of ideas for projects using different materials, techniques, and subject matter. Then the students could choose from these lessons those they would prefer to do. Students would not only be taking an active part in democracy, but they would have much more vested interest in their work. They would have had a role in choosing what they would be doing and what will be needed to make it a successful experience through the rubrics.
The three of these ideas combined I feel make a successful classroom for students to succeed in.