Sunday, September 11, 2005

Rough Draft: Philosophy of Education--Unfinished

[I found this while going through my old computer discs.   I have no idea why it's not finished, or where the final draft is.]

Google: drive, docs, pub

Joel Swagman
History 359 Miller
December 4, 2000

Rough Draft

As I approach the end of my time here at Calvin College, it is necessary for me to begin thinking about how I would teach history from a Christian perspective.  This is something that I would like to discuss in this essay.
However, before I get into that, there is a couple issues I would like to address that will be of help in writing this essay.
What it means to teach from a Christian perspective in a public school is different from what it means to teach from a Christian perspective in a Christian private school.  Therefore, I think it is important to establish whether this essay is written for a public school or a Christian school.
I have spent my whole life in the Christian schools, from pre-school to high school to College.  I have had a good experience at these schools, and have learned a lot about the Bible and about church history that I would not have learned from a public school.  However, I do feel like the experience has not been all positive.  Because my entire life growing up has revolved around church and school, I have had very few non-Christian friends in my life.  One, to be exact.  And the number of non-Christian acquaintances I have had is also very low.
I believe this is a serious harm that probably outweighs all the positives that Christian education has done for me.  If I had it to do over again, I would have gone to a public high school, and a secular college.  After all, what good does it do if we Christians only associate with each other?  How will our ideals spread?  God has called us to be in the world and part of the world, not to isolate ourselves.  Isolation is also bad for us personally.  For instance, when I go out into the “real world” I will have to be able to interact with people from different faiths and different backgrounds.  I think my Christian education has caused me to be sheltered, so that I will have to make these adjustments as an adult since I never learned them as a child.
At this point in my life I feel that Christians should involve themselves in public schools, and I wish to do that.  Consequently, this essay will be written from the assumption that I will be teaching in the public schools.

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