OVERVIEW OF THIS PORTFOLIO
The various sections of this portfolio exemplify the skills and knowledge I have acquired during my training to become a media specialist. The organization around the AASL standards should ensure that a variety of my qualities as a potential media specialist are demonstrated; however, I feel that other important elements of who I will become in a media position are my interest in becoming a library media specialist and my view of education and myself as a teacher. As such, before one explores the other areas, I find it important to explain:
- What drew me to the profession
- My philosophy of education
- And, as it is very important to me, my understanding of the importance of multicultural education
WHY A MEDIA SPECIALIST?
Prior to entering and while completing the LMS program at McDaniel College, I have been teaching High School English in Howard County; however, I had known for quite some time that there must be a position in education that fit me a bit better than English teacher: The suit was okay but not tailor-made. My time in my first Masters Program at Wake Forest had given me some clue as to what aspects of a job truly interested me: technology and helping/collaborating with others. From peer editing essays to working back stage at theatres, jobs I have passionately enjoyed have always involved helping others do their jobs better. And once I started to learn about computers, I quickly became interested in the possibilities they present in education.
During my first year teaching, I frequented the media center regularly and befriended the media specialists. I found their jobs interesting and enjoyed helping them when I could. One of them approached me and suggested that I would make a good media specialist. She informed me of a forming cohort, and after consideration of the career change, I set a frenetic pace toward becoming a media specialist. I have thoroughly enjoyed the journey, which has increased my knowledge and interest in the other aspects of the job.
I look forward to helping everyone in my school community perform successfully.
MY BELIEFS REGARDING EDUCATION
Educated as a teacher, I value the media specialist's role as an educator. I feel that my background in the classroom is integral to my contributions as a media specialist. As such, it is important to understand what I believe about teaching. My philosophy of education, linked below, outlines ten beliefs that I find most important regarding education. Distilled, I believe in a student-centered education that values: learners as individuals in a multicultural society, authentic learning experiences which prepare students as citizens, recognizing learners' strengths, interests, and needs.
Of equal importance to me is my philosophy of multicultural education. Raised in a small, homogenous farming community, I have continually sought the diversity and valuation of difference that was missing from my own education. Working to be reflect on my own biases and assumptions, I have come to understand some of those which exist in traditional American education and the negative effects thereof. I believe multicultural education to be central to not only a democratic society but also authentic learning for all.
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