For me, arriving at my philosophy has been a really hard and soul searching task. The Collins English dictionary describes the word philosophy as any “system of beliefs, values or tenets” (Davidson, 2009, p123) but, what do I really think is important? What values do I want to support, instil and nurture (Stonehouse, 1991) in the children that I teach?
I have spent the past couple of days searching through my textbooks for anything remotely related to the word philosophy, scanning through endless pages on the internet and locked in endless conversations and debate with my peers and colleagues, just to wind up with my thoughts in even more of a tangle then when I started. But then tonight, as I sat down and watched my children play together in the lounge it suddenly dawned on me, all this time I had been tying myself up in knots over what I should be valuing and instilling in other people’s children when the question for me really is, what values and beliefs do I want to instil and nurture within my own children?
When thinking about my personal philosophy I found it so hard to find a place to start, but now I’m finding it is hard to stop (Arthur, l., Beecher, B., Death, E., Dockett, S. & Farmer, S. (2008). The entire centre of my approach to and reason for teaching young children is that they are confident and competent individuals who need to be nurtured and empowered through positive guidance, responsive and reciprocal relationships within a safe and caring environment. I want to encourage and positively support children to take responsibility for their own learning, follow their own personal interests, try new things, set their own challenges, and find their own solutions at the pace that is right for them. I value Whanau input, and really encourage that they play an active role within their child’s or children’s learning, and within the centre as a whole. I also believe