Getting Student Teacher

Discussion in 'General Education' started by cmgeorge626, Nov 29, 2009.

  1. cmgeorge626

    cmgeorge626 Companion

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    Nov 29, 2009

    I just found out before we got out for Thanksgiving that I will have a student teacher in the Spring. This is only my fifth year to teach and I've never been a mentor teacher before! I'm wondering if you have any tips for how to incorporate her into the class and how to best prepare and help her?

    I apologize if this has been posted a million times before, I searched on here and couldn't find much!
     
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  3. StudentTeach

    StudentTeach Comrade

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    Nov 29, 2009

    I just got my assignment AS a student teacher, so I might be able to help a little bit from this end ;)

    The next step for me is to set up an interview with my cooperating teacher and my supervisor gave me questions and topics we should discuss, I think they will be helpful for you as well:

    -- What will I be teaching?
    -- What textbooks are in use?
    -- What skills or content can I be expected to cover?
    -- What can you tell me about this particular class of children, or about the students in the school that will help me prepare for working with them?
    -- What can I do now and over break to prepare for the content I'll be teaching?

    These are questions we are supposed to expect from the cooperating teacher:
    -- Describe any experiences you have had with children that have prepared you for this placement. What did you learn from these experiences?
    -- Do you have any special hobbies or interests that you would like to share with the students?
    -- What courses or other commitments will you have during the placement?
    -- What contributions can you make to our school?
    -- What is your philosophy of education?
    -- What is your favorite subject to teach? Least favorite subject?
    -- What techniques would you use to keep students actively involved and motivated during a lesson?
    -- How would you handle a student who continually "acted up" in class?
    -- How would you vary instruction for individual needs of students? Give examples.

    I hope this is helpful... let me know if I can help more.
     
  4. noreenk

    noreenk Cohort

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    Nov 29, 2009

    The big stuff I'd advise doing first:
    -Go over your schedule. Talk about what has to stay firm and what can change. Discuss any school procedures (announcements, assemblies) that are a regular part of the day/week and what student/teacher expectations are during those time.
    -Talk about your/the university's expectations with schedule, lesson plans, etc. I have had ridiculous issues with dress code violations and last-minute absences - my co-workers have not, but regardless, just make sure both of you know what is expected.
    -Talk about the kids. Special needs, behavior issues, extreme family situations, etc.
    -Discuss your expectations for behavior/classroom management, homework, classwork, and any daily routines and procedures. Your student teacher needs to be consistent with what you've already established.
    -Let him/her know where your resources are: instructional planning guides, lesson plans, TEs, workbooks, manipulatives, etc. As he/she starts to plan lessons, they know where to look.

    Since the first month is mostly observation and then gradual teaching, I gave my student teacher an overview for the month in each subject area. I also gave her our state objectives. Based on her strengths and content knowledge, we determined what subject she should teach first... and I often encouraged her to think outside the box and not just do what I did. Sometimes it went well, sometimes it didn't, but it was always a learning experience. Good luck!
     
  5. word girl

    word girl Rookie

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    Nov 29, 2009

    :) Congratulations on becoming a cooperating teacher! It's a big commitment, but I have found that it's always worth it. I will be getting a student teacher in the spring as well - my 5th!

    Here's what I've found works for both of us:

    First week - observation, assistance and overview of curriculum, state and district standards, and materials. After school discussion of said materials as well as management philosophies and lessons and units. When I say observation, I mean two-way. He/she should observe the classroom and my teaching, and I will observe his/her interactions.

    Week two - take over one area of curriculum. Let it be something s/he is confident with. Again, lots of meeting after school to review how things went and how to adjust. Plan for upcoming bigger units.

    Weeks 3-6 -gradually take over more responsibility each week. I would recommend that the student teacher use a mix of your lessons and materials and come up with some of his/her own, possibly based on yours or what s/he has learned in coursework.

    Many programs recommend one-two weeks of 'solo' teaching. Depending on the student teacher's ability/proficiency, give them as much time as possible solo. But make sure s/he is aware of all responsibilities. At this point, it is important for you, the cooperating teacher, to let go if you have any control issues ;) The student teacher will most likely not live up completely to your expectations, but as long as they are competent, it is important to let them sink or swim on their own, as it provides valuable learning experiences.

    Be sure to have time for the student teacher to view/meet with other teachers, go to all required meetings, and I can't stress enough - talk with you!
     
  6. Hoot Owl

    Hoot Owl Aficionado

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    Dec 1, 2009

    1) Have a roster listing: male/female, race, ethnic group, language, exceptionalities (autism learning disabilities, giftedness, etc.)
    2) Define important classroom routines, procedures, rules, and expectations for student behavior
    3) Have a seating chart
    4) Make sure she defines her goals when she starts teaching making sure the students understand what they are to learn.
    5) Teach her efficacy, reflecting on what she's taught & how she can improve.
    6) Teach her efficiency in passing out papers and changing subjects.
    7) Give her opportunities to observe other teachers
    8) Show her the students' standardized test scores and show her how to intrepret them.
    I might think of more later...

    Enjoy her!
     
  7. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

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    Dec 1, 2009

    I'm getting a student teacher in the spring, too.
     
  8. Emma35

    Emma35 Connoisseur

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    Dec 1, 2009

    Me too! Actually she will just be coming in once a week from January till May and then in the fall she will be full time. I have met her already and she seems really nice. Plus she is a tech geek just like me so we should get along just fine! I am excited, this will be my first full time student teacher.
     
  9. Anyalee

    Anyalee Companion

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    Dec 2, 2009

    Very cool for you! I think it is a lot of fun as long as you get a good student teacher. My first was a disaster and my second was a dream! I hope the third one coming in is also as good as the last. This is my fourth year teaching & this will be my 3rd student teacher. I have also had 4 practicum students...that's what I get for living in a college town I guess. I love the chance to get to "teach" adults during the year as well as kids.
     
  10. Dja4260

    Dja4260 Rookie

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    Dec 2, 2009

    I just finished student teaching. (Well this Friday).

    I had a split placement and both teachers were polar opposites.

    One spoke his mind, worked with me, gave pointers, what has worked in the past for him / failed.

    Other let me alone asap. Didn't really give any feedback. Used me so he could attend to his personal agenda (coaching).

    Be open, remember how nervous you were YOUR 1st week of student teaching? Give lots of feedback.
     
  11. tgim

    tgim Habitué

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    Dec 2, 2009

    Lots of great ideas...I have had 5-6 student teachers, ranging from absolutely exceptional (still one of my favorite people on the planet) to very good to average to absolutely not prepared. My strategy is similar to WordGirl's - possibly because that was how it was outlined by the university.

    I agree with lots of feedback - but try to listen first; ask him/her how s/he thinks the lesson went, encourage him/her to use a journal to reflect on lessons. Then offer positives and areas for future work.

    Try not to involve him/her in staff issues and personality conflicts - be professional.

    Sharing my sub binder at first was a great way to get her acclimated to the classroom because it contains all of my procedures and policies, along with class lists and schedules.

    One issue that I didn't notice above was the issue of confidentiality. Maybe because I live in a small community, I think we have to stress to student teachers that student confidentiality is a must.

    Yes, to Dja - I do remember being so very nervous and self-conscious my first couple of weeks! But once I started teaching and working with students, I was completely at ease...until my university supervisor or the principal walked in! Somewhere, I have a VHS of me teaching during that period - 80's hair and all! It was such a hoot to watch it a few years ago!

    The bottom line - enjoy, learn, take pictures, ask questions; you will be fine!
     
  12. word girl

    word girl Rookie

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    Dec 2, 2009

    TGIM, you mentioned really important points that I forgot :0
    When reflecting on the lesson, have the student teacher reflect first. And confidentiality is soo important. Good points!
     
  13. newbie87

    newbie87 Comrade

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    Dec 2, 2009

    Kind of o/t, but this thread is so enlightening. In my state, you can't do your intership, five day a week, where you did your own day a week, practicum. It's also interesting to see someone get a student teacher so earlier in their career. Here, teachers can't have until they've been tenured.
     
  14. SwOcean Gal

    SwOcean Gal Devotee

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    Dec 3, 2009

    This is so enlightening for me as well! I am student teaching in the spring. So come January!!! I am super excited and so happy to get this inside look too! Very helpful!
    I just hope my teachers will be supportive!!! When you are telling me a lesson bombed, I am sure I already knew that, but be positive too! Don't forget to mention the one good part, even if it was the ending because it was over! lol
     
  15. Anyalee

    Anyalee Companion

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    Dec 3, 2009

    Well the "rules" are that you can't have a student teacher until you are tenured...but they NEED mentor teachers so badly that they bend the rules. I'm tenured now! :)
     
  16. newbie87

    newbie87 Comrade

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    Dec 3, 2009

    ^^^Cool, did they ask you? I.e. Can we give you a student teacher? Or did you just get one without warning?
     
  17. Mrs. K.

    Mrs. K. Enthusiast

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    I was just asked today if I wanted a student teacher for second semester! I enjoy being a mentor, and since I'm done with my MA I decided the time is right. Hope she'll like getting up early to face seniors in their final semester!
     
  18. HeatherY

    HeatherY Habitué

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    I would say tot try to get to know your ST as a person. Take her out to lunch after school one day. Talk about the kids like you would to a colleague. My MT's were great, but I felt so uncomfortable around them. It would have been nice to have more..... personal contact.
     
  19. Anyalee

    Anyalee Companion

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    Dec 3, 2009

    They always ask if we will pretty please take a student teacher. I always buy lunch for the ST at least once. My last one was wonderful...we actually have a position open at my school at semester and I'm crossing my fingers that she gets it. Everybody send your mojo towards her!
     
  20. Dja4260

    Dja4260 Rookie

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    Dec 5, 2009

    Today was my last day. I am Certified and employed!
     
  21. tgim

    tgim Habitué

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    Congrats, Dja! What a great milestone to have under your belt!

    When I lived in a university-town, I was asked frequently to have a ST, but in my current location there aren't as many opportunities to have a ST. I loved the collaboration between the school and university!
     
  22. maebowler

    maebowler Comrade

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    Dec 5, 2009

    When I student taugh, my second placement was a combined 2nd, 3rd, 4th grade program. I decided to start teaching math first because that is my weakness and I wanted more practice with it. My cooperating teacher was worried about my skills until I started teaching language arts, science, and social studies. She understood after that. Someone suggested having her go with the most comfortable, I would say, see what she wants to do.
     

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