Thursday, 10 April 2014

Fanning The Flame of Curiosity

     “Education is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel.”[1] Can an individual’s pursuit of knowledge ever truly cease? Educators the world over are diligently attempting to arm their students with the skills and values so that they can become life-long learners; learners who recognize not only that education is not limited to the confines of a classroom, but also that self-guided learning often times provides the most rewarding and valuable experiences of all. In a profession that is built upon the ignition of students’ curiosity, there are many teachers who not only end their formal education with their Bachelors of Education but also take a passive approach to new educational experiences as well. One only needs to listen in on the staffroom conversations prior to a Professional Development session to pinpoint just how high this number can be. I firmly believe that it is our responsibility as educators to not only ignite our students’ curiosity, but to also maintain the flame of our own. I am currently pursuing acceptance into Brandon University’s Masters of Education program (Curriculum & Instruction Stream) based on my personal belief statement listed above as well as my desire to focus on the purposeful implementation of technology into curriculum outcomes and delivery.

     While there are educators who recognize the importance of implementing technology into their classrooms, there are not as many who recognize the necessity of this practice within today’s society. Gone are the days where the teaching staff and school libraries accounted for the sum of knowledge within a division. The development of the internet, and its insurmountable associated programs, has expanded the possibilities of education to the point where the public school education model I graduated from, a short seven years ago, is now laughable. Technology allows students everything from accessing information and connecting with real-world experts to tailored learning adaptations and experiential learning opportunities. Two areas that I am especially interested in are the purposeful integration of “Maker Spaces” for both formal and informal scientific exploration and student-lead/student-created online environments. One of my goals as an educator is to focus on purposefully implementing various technologies not only into the delivery of my lessons, but also into the curriculum outcomes themselves.

Please accept this writing sample as part of my formal application to Brandon University’s Masters of Education program; I hope it not only provides an indication of my writing level but also of my personal desire to continue on the path of formalized education. Within a graduate program, I will be provided with the guidance and support that will be required as I work towards my goals. In the same way I design a variety of learning opportunities for my students, I recognize that a graduate program will further my professional education through specialized courses and supported experiences that would not be accessible to me otherwise. My previous six years of post-secondary education at Brandon University provided me with the opportunity to explore my interests, identify and develop my passions, and connect with amazing people in various fields; it also left me wanting more. Please allow me an opportunity to fan the flame of my curiosity.

[1] Unknown Author; often misattributed to Socrates or Plutarch, although no findable citation to either philosopher is available.

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