Maria Brandt

Central to my teaching philosophy is significant teacher preparation. In part, this means cultivating deep knowledge of my content areas, which helps me encourage my students towards radical synthesis between the material under study and its changing implications in the larger world. This also means developing thoughtful classroom structures and assignments to catalyze critical thinking and student accountability, in particular. I want my students to reach willfully beyond their comfort zones, to surprise themselves by the connections and contradictions they begin to observe on their own, to nurture skills and insights they might previously have neglected. I want them to write with greater conviction, and to desire their writing reach a larger audience. Ultimately, I want the subject matter of the class to have real-world relevance, not because I brought the material down to them, but because they extended themselves—because they, themselves, have become larger, and by extension so has their world.

For information on my work in the Fellows Program, please see the report I co-authored on Common Assignments and Evaluation Tools in College Composition and 11th Grade English.