Getting Ready for Student Teaching

Discussion in 'Student & Preservice Teachers' started by elaradreamstar, Jul 31, 2013.

  1. elaradreamstar

    elaradreamstar Rookie

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    Jul 31, 2013

    Hey all, I was wondering if there were any tips that you could give me as I head into my semester of student teaching?

    I'm going to be placed at a junior high school teaching 7th-8th grade social studies (American history for both, maybe some other stuff... haven't heard from the teacher yet). I will also be doing a 3 1/2 week part in Dublin for some international experience at a Catholic boy's school... that part has me extremely nervous since I have no idea what Irish social studies classes are like.

    Anyway... tips? Warnings of what not to do? Experiences with international teaching? Anything helps.
     
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  3. vivalavida

    vivalavida Companion

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    Aug 1, 2013

    Looking forward to some advice as well. I'm anxious to find out my placement!
     
  4. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    Aug 12, 2013

    Feel out your Mentor teacher and kind of roll with their flow. Not every Mentor teacher is excited to have a student teacher or is trusting enough to give up total control; some just want you to observe all semester and help them grade papers. Basically, don't make things harder on them because you want to do it your way; don't try to come in and set up new systems because you want to try out every thing you've learned in your Ed classes. Observe and assess your Mentor to see what could work for you and what may not.

    Seek guidance/advice/tips from other teachers.

    Be on time.

    Dress professionally.

    Remember that your experience student teaching may be nothing like your real teaching career, so don't be so quick to make any future judgments based upon.
     
  5. Storyteller

    Storyteller Rookie

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    Aug 13, 2013

    I just did my student teaching last fall and one thing I found helpful was to ask questions! I'm not someone who enjoys asking questions and hates to seem like I don't know things but your student teaching is a chance to learn! Find out what works for your cooperating teacher - it might not work for you but it's a good start.

    And yes, always be on time. Dress very professionally. And soak in everything. If you can, try and go to visit other classes in your school; I learned a lot from observing other teachers and their strategies.

    Good luck!!
     
  6. Ted

    Ted Habitué

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    Aug 13, 2013

    Ask to set up an initial meeting with your mentor teacher(s) and ask him/her what are their expectations for you.

    Let them know that you're eager to learn all aspects of the profession and that they can feel free to include you in many activities (parent conferences, lesson planning, curriculum adjustments, classroom modifications, etc.)

    Have a great time! :)
     
  7. elaradreamstar

    elaradreamstar Rookie

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    Aug 28, 2013

    Thanks for the advice guys, I really appreciate it. I have a whole ton of expectations from my supervising teacher, but my mentor seems pretty laid back over all, so this looks like it will be fun.

    Apparently it's going to be all 7th graders, so early American history, with two sections of honors and maybe five IEP students tops. Still a little nervous, but he said he wanted to start me off with the honors kids when I start lessons, so that has me excited.
     
  8. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Aug 28, 2013

    As far as basic advice:
    - Dress to impress. Yes, you may very well be better dressed than the teachers in the school. That's OK-- they HAVE a job, you don't. (Says the woman dressed for school in a skirt and sweater, stockings and heels.)

    - Ask questions. But observe first, and see whether you can figure out the answers. I would much rather have a question like "Did you move Tommy's seat because... " than "Why did you move Tommy?"

    - Know that your mentor teacher is juggling priorities you know nothing about. And that he or she may not be in a position to share everything with you. So some of his/her actions may because of information you're not privy to.

    - The primary focus of middle schoolers is "Fair." You can be a very demanding teacher and they'll still love you, as long as you're fair.

    - Over prepare for any lesson you're teaching. Sure, I can walk into almost any math class in the building and wing it. That's because I'm starting year #28. You need to prepare lots and lots beyond what you expect to teach.

    - Expect to get questions to which you don't know the answer. That's OK. Either promise to find the answer or ask the kid to-- but either way, YOU find the answer, and make sure you remember to bring it up the next class. You can ask Joe whether he found the answer. If he forgot, you say "Well, you got me curious, so I looked it up. The answer is...." Let them know that you're the lifelong learner you're trying to get them to be.

    The best of luck to you. And I'm so envious of your Dublin experience!!!
     

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