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A Personal Approach to the Philosophy of Education

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Based from the diagnostic test that I did last week, it is shown that I have an eclectic approach with the combination of Existentialism and Behaviorism. Basically, my ideal beliefs about the teaching and learning process, that is based from the existentialist point of view, is what I expected. I am here to teach and I do not care if they are there to listen or not. I meant that it is every move that they do in life is based on their personal preference or choice not knowing where it goes, may it bring them to the brighter or the darker side of life. Meanwhile for my beliefs that are aligned to behaviorism, I believe that one factor for a student’s behavior to be like what I observe is their environment, which can lead their concentration to go somewhere else. A simple example can be the ventilation of the classroom, may it be too hot or too cold. It affects the teaching-learning process.

Existentialism is a philosophical theory which emphasizes the existence of a person as a free creature. Why do the existentialists teach? They teach to help students understand and appreciate themselves as individuals. Their understanding and appreciation of their existence will lead to understand their essence and purpose as a social animal and a human being. In an existentialist curriculum, the students are given a wide variety of options to choose, still with emphasis on humanities to provide students vicarious experiences to ponder on that will help unleash their own creativity and self expression. I believe that group sharing and presentation is an ideal way to teach in an existential way. Creative projects and discussion is also an example.

Behaviorism is a theory that animal and human behavior can be explained in terms of conditioning, without appeal of thoughts or feelings. Behaviorists teach to instill in them the desirable behavior for a peaceful society. They believe that how they are behaving is caused by their environment. What are they teaching? They teach students to respond favorably to various stimuli in their environment. As a behaviorist, I think that we should treat students in a way that their response will be favorable to them. A behaviorist example of teaching is memorization of concepts like memorizing the alphabet. These philosophies that I discovered in myself makes a lot of difference in my life. My beliefs in teaching and student behavior gradually changed from learning the different professional education subjects. I learned that this profession takes a lot of patience and understanding for others. Our profession is not only about implementing your lesson and be able to discuss everything smoothly but also in establishing rapport with your students and the impact that you will have in their lives.

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