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Running head: HUMANISTIC

Eric Tarkalson’s Teaching Philosophy
Eric Tarkalson
College of Southern Idaho


While there are many philosophies of education, the one that resonates with me the most is

that of a Humanistic approach. All the philosophies are directed toward educating children.

They different approaches to the same ultimate goal. The goal is to prepare children from the

beginning of their school career into their adult years to be productive in society. The humanistic

philosophy believes everyone has great potential and that each person can become as great as

they would like. These potentials can only come about through personal freedom, choice,

responsibility and the interactions with others.


The philosophy that describes me the best is Humanism. The beliefs of a Humanist

Educator are, beliefs that fall in line with the desires that I have as a future teacher. I strongly

believe that all students have great potential. A humanistic educator is like a horse trainer and

his horse. He can only lead him to water, but he can’t force him to drink. The horse will drink on

its own terms and the trainer has to create the right environment to allow him to succeed.

Students have control over their own destinies and the teacher, is responsible in helping them see

the possibilities. This philosophy definitely best describes my personality and beliefs. Growing

up I was taught that through hard work, personal freedom and being responsible, I could reach

any goal that I would make in the future. I was taught to motivate myself and be thoughtful of


There are aspects within the Humanistic philosophy that are very important in education

today, such as, the students need an encouraging environment to learn and should be given the

proper setting to do so. The philosophy states that the educational environment needs to be one

that encourages students and staff to be responsible for themselves, create an opportunity of

choice, as well as a teaching environment that is interactive.

The role of the teacher is to find what interests the students have and to adapt the lesson

towards those interests according to the Humanistic philosophy of education. The teacher needs

to have interactive lessons, both in the classroom and out in the real world setting. It is important

and the responsibility of the teacher to create lesson that help each student progress and fully

understand the lessons he or she is teaching. The lessons need to be interactive and stimulating to

the students, this will create excitement and participation.


It’s best for me to have as much interaction with my students as I can. This feedback is very

telling of what I need to change and how I can be more effective in my approach. I learn best

when I can see real application of what is being taught. This concept will be one that I will

emphasize in my classroom, although it will ultimately come down to whether the student

respond well to it or not. A Humanistic educator believes, ultimately it’s their choice on how

they learn best.

Teaching with this philosophy I believe will be very effective and I will see many students

find success in the real world. The Humanistic philosophy has many core values that give

importance to its approach in educating our future leaders.