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Looking Inside: Helping Teachers Assess their Beliefs and Values

by Paula Jorde Bloom
November/December 1992
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Article Link: https://www.childcareexchange.com/article/looking-inside-helping-teachers-assess-their-beliefs-and-values/5008811/

Directors often lament how difficult it is to change teachers so that teaching practices are more developmentally appropriate and interactions with parents and other staff are more professional. The reason for the difficulty is that change efforts typically focus on increasing teachers' knowledge base. Clearly, knowledge is important; the workshops, the college classes, the books and articles are essential to expanding teachers' repertoire of instructional strategies. But knowledge is only part of the equation when it comes to helping teachers grow in professional competence. Directors must also help teachers become reflective practitioners. And reflection begins with an examination of one's own belief system.

Teachers' attitudes and beliefs about children provide the foundation for their philosophy of teaching. Because beliefs are grounded in one's values, they have a strong impact on shaping behavior. Teachers' values also govern how they will react when confronted with the inevitable ethical dilemmas that occur from time to time.

The assessment tool at the end of this article was designed to help teachers reflect on their attitudes and beliefs about children, parents, and their role in the classroom. The information gleaned from this self-assessment will help directors better understand the undergirding ...

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