My name is Dylan McShain. I am an international teacher currently working at an American Academy in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. I have also worked at a bilingual international school in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in the United States. Since entering the field of education in 2009, I have been at the forefront of curriculum development in new and challenging environments. The roadblocks and barriers I have faced as a new teacher in a fast-paced and, at times, uncompromising world has forced me to think quickly on my feet and pick things up at the speeds at which they pass before me. Through those trials I have gained an exorbitant amount of exposure to different programs, curriculum frameworks, and the overall development of school and educational communities.
My specialty in teaching is primarily with early years, especially within the IB PYP framework of education. I have taught health and physical education to students in Kindergarten through 8th grades in some of the poorest areas of the world, as well as some of the most affluent. In that endeavor to differentiate my instruction and reach all students I have acquired much insight.
I truly believe that education is one of the great equalizers in this world. As an educator who has worked with the poorest and the wealthiest, I realize more and more the part that education plays in our future. While it is not the only part, the system and school in which a child is raised have tremendous effects on the outcomes of that child’s life. Whether positive or negative, as a society, we must realize we each factor into the development of our next generation. And as educators, we must realize this impact to an even greater degree.
I came to realize the impact we play in a child’s future when I first started teaching years back at an underfunded, lower-SES, urban school in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. What surprised me was how, years later, as I switched schools, much of the same effects and influences could be seen at the other end of the Socio-economic scale. Children need good teachers, and teachers need an educational system that encourages and supports them to make such positive impressions. In every environment in which I work, I strive to create a better atmosphere for colleague, administration, and student alike.
My goal in teaching is not just one of a selfish mindset, but one that allows me to grow through helping others to do the same. Traveling the world with my wife gives me amazing insight into how I can do just that, and I long and hope to continue that growth wherever my path may lead. I look forward to talking, meeting, and getting to know anyone who wishes to join me on that path. This blog, and the words that fill it’s pages, is part of that path and I hope it is one more stepping stone of enrichment that leads to the greater good of every child.