As I support my son in preparing his applications for a Masters in Education, I have found myself thinking of this question… What do I want for him? As a mom, I want him, and his siblings, to have fulfilling careers that they will one day share with supportive spouses and adorable kids for me to spoil. As an educator, my answer is more about what kind of educator I want him to become.
I want my son, the educator, to care more about the students in his care than completing the curriculum. I want my son, the teacher, to spend the necessary time getting to know his kids so that he can differentiate the lessons and units to their interests and learning styles. I want my son to not be an upfront lecturer but an educational guide. I want the students in my son’s care to know that he cares about their social/emotional development as much as their academic growth.
So as my son starts this path to being an educator, the other question that has been rolling around in my head is…What do I want the graduate programs to provide for him? Which brings me to my original answers…Tools & Strategies.
It is my hope that the program he chooses will provide courses in child development. It is important to understand how children typically develop and how that relates to their capacity to learn skills and abstract ideas. How children develop will figure into the lessons he will one day create. I wish for my son to have courses, not in subject knowledge, but in knowledge application. Further, I would like for him to be exposed to strategies for guiding students to make applications using their knowledge. I want my teacher son to be able to encourage students to find the knowledge they need, then apply that knowledge to solving their problems.
The graduate program he chooses, I hope will recognize the need for teaching beyond the textbook and effectively incorporating digital resources. I want the program to equip my son with the formative assessment tools to coordinate his teaching to the progress of his students. I wish for the program to give my son opportunities to practice positive classroom management with guidance from experienced teachers.
The last thing I want the graduate program to provide for my son is his first PLN (Personal Learning Network). A group of like-minded, exuberant educators that he can talk to in classes, on Twitter, and through whatever the next social media forum that will arise.
Ultimately, I hope my son continues to be the life long learner he already is. This will serve his students well!
Originally Posted on Thursday, 20 July 2017