Ms. Danielle Callahan
-Born and raised in Philadelphia, PA.
-Earned both Bachelor and Master of Education degrees from Boston University.
-Came to St. Patrick's as an Augustinian Volunteer then stayed on staff as a fourth grade teacher ever since!
My Philosophy of Teaching
As a teacher in the 21st century, I realize I have the great privilege and challenge of preparing my students for a world that doesn't exist yet. For this reason I see my role of teacher as a dynamic and changing one. I find it essential to see my role as two fold: an active and engaging facilitator of rigorous evidence based instruction, as well as an ongoing mentor in positive identity development.
A safe learning environment
It's hard to learn in a place where you don't feel safe. By incorporating predictable routines, daily community building, restorative behavior management practices, and encouraging curiosity, students feel that the classroom is a place they are able to take risks and be themselves.
Meeting students where they are
In the 21st century, I've learned I need to meet students where they are. It is unrealistic to expect all learners to learn in the same way at at the same pace. While some students will come into my classroom ahead of the curve, some are just trying to catch up. For this reason, I differentiate learning by incorporating small group instruction and making use of technology to both push students ahead but also get some students back up to speed. I am proud that I see each learner as an individual and do everything in my power to not let any child "slip through the cracks."
A term coined by Dr. Carol Dweck, growth mindset pertains to the beliefs we have about our own intelligence. People who exhibit a growth mindset are constantly trying to learn and grow to better themselves. These are individuals who enjoy challenges and believe that their intelligence, talents, and basic abilities can be increased or enhanced through hard work and dedicated effort.
This mindset permeates itself in my classroom on a daily basis. My policies allow for students to retake assignments or assessments so that they can continue to grow and learn.
On any given day, if you walk into our fourth grade class you can hear students saying the magic word, "yet." Rather than "I don't get this", or "I'm not good at science", students transform their attitudes by saying, "I don't get this 'yet'", or "I'm not good at science 'yet'".