Melanie Lupien


Philosophy of Teaching

Pablo Picasso once said, “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.” From a young age, I wanted to be an artist. In fourth grade, I remember pestering my art teacher to see if I would be the next student to receive the sought-after “Artist of The Week” certificate. As a child I was always creating, discovering, and making some kind of art mess and no matter the size of the mess, my mother was always there to help me clean and replenish my art supplies. In high school I had an amazing art teacher who cared, he pushed me to express myself, and filled me with inspiration. My life as far back as I can remember, has always been filled with encouragement, creativity, expression, and questions for art. These life experiences have helped to shape me into the innovative, compassionate, and dedicated art teacher that I am today.

Teaching is a way for me to express my creativity and enjoy each day of my life. As an educator, I know that before I even start to teach art, I teach who I am – just by my presence. For this reason I must be aware of how I represent myself. My desire is not to be viewed as an expert, or as someone who always knows if art is great or worthy. Instead, I am a facilitator to the student’s critical thinking and creating. When developing lesson plans, I consider multiple intelligences in an effort to reach all learners. My goal is that students will connect with activities that speak to them and help reach the way they learn best. I hope that the lessons I teach will challenge students to step out of their comfort zone, so they can experience a different way of learning and build their confidence.

A classroom should be a place that is fun, but still have guidelines. Humor is an important part of the classroom because it encourages laughter and it is another way for me to reach and connect with students. Humor helps to motivate students to learn, it enhances group cohesion, and can help to defuse tense situations. From my personal experience, humor helps to bring students from all different backgrounds together and helps to build community within a classroom.

As a teacher, I have certain expectations of students. From the first day, I am clear and firm, yet reasonable about what is expected from students an consistent with those expectations. To help students succeed, the classroom expectations are clearly posted, and I praise them for their good behaviors. Although discipline problems are inevitable in any classroom, these behaviors can be offset by keeping students engaged with interesting, creative, and relevant curriculum. Motivating students through positive reinforcement fosters productive behavior in the classroom. In my personal experience, when students feel that they are respected and valued members of a community that is encouraging and positive, they strive to grow and do well.

Assessments and feedback are two very important components of the teaching environment. Assessing student learning is a teacher’s most important method for understanding her successes in teaching, and her student’s successes in learning. When a project has been completed in my classroom, students engage in class discussions and discuss their completed art; they share what they enjoyed and what they found difficult for that specific art lesson. These discussions and the feedback help guide my current and future lessons. Feedback is a two way street. As a teacher I welcome feedback from students; it helps me grow as a teacher and I strive to provide my students with prompt comprehensive feedback often.

To me teaching is like an artist’s colorful palette. As I teach, I strive to make sure my classroom palette contains the perfect mixture of interesting curriculum, feedback, assessments, humor, expectations, and positive reinforcement to reach my students, which in return keeps students engaged and promotes good classroom behavior. These key components help to pave the road for my students to be lifelong learners and to continue to be creative artists.




3 comments:

  1. How do you get the pop-up Van Gogh sunflowers to stay up?

    Love your projects!

    -Kelli

    ReplyDelete
  2. How do you get the pop-up Van Gogh sunflowers to stay up?

    Love your projects!

    -Kelli

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi! Don't you have a following option?

    ReplyDelete