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Page history last edited by Abigail MacLean-Blevins 11 years, 1 month ago


I firmly believe that the most successful learning experiences come from strong, open relationships between teachers and students.  Teachers, especially those working with early childhood or elementary-aged students, serve not only as an educator but also as an advocate, a friend, a confidant, and a reality check when students need it.  A good educator can balance all of these roles to provide a safe environment; a phenomenal educator balances each of these roles in the proportion needed by each individual student to create the space each individual student needs to learn most effectively.  To demonstrate my focus on teacher-student relationships and to showcase my ability to actively build a classroom culture that supports learns with diverse backgrounds and abilities as well as my skills in encouraging educational equity and social justice, I created a case study of one of my students that I felt fit into one or more traditionally at-risk categories.  I observed this student, then used current research and theory to elucidate his situation and his potential future.  Included in the case study are strategies we implemented with the student and other potential interventions to prevent this student from becoming an “at-risk” learner.  


In addition to developing strong relationships with my students and fostering friendships and collegiality between the students in my classroom, I strive to create meaningful relationships between my students and their peers around the world.  As part of my M.A.T. program, I had the opportunity to travel to The Gambia, West Africa; I used this opportunity to connect my American students and my Gambian students.  I shared pictures and information about The Gambia, gathered during a previous stay in the country, with my American students, and guided them in writing letters to my future Gambian students.  These letters both described my students' lives in Maryland and asked questions of my Gambian students.  Upon arrival in my placement classroom in The Gambia, I shared my American students' letters and worked individually with my Gambian students to compose and transcribe responses to send back to America.  I also shared a video from my American students with my Gambian students, who created and sent a video back.  This trans-Atlantic communication and culture share worked to the benefit and growth of my students on both sides of the ocean.  I intend to continue the exchange of letters with students from The Gambia as I transition into my own classroom and with each successive group of students.

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