Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Student Teaching; an Ending and a Beginning

For my student teachers this semester, the experience marks an end to their college life and a beginning to their careers as elementary school teachers. It's a time of great growth and development, a time to take risks and also a time to finally find out if teaching is the right choice of career. For the vast majority of students the student teaching experience affirms this choice and is a culmination of all the hard work of the previous semesters. For a very, very small number, perhaps less than 1% it is a time of great anguish and soul searching for everyone involved when the prospect of failure looms large. Thankfully I have been involved in very few such situations but when it does happen it takes a long time to recover both mentally and emotionally because one cares so deeply about one's students' success.

No such problems this semester. All four of my student teachers are off to a great start and already there are some great stories of things children say or do. Things like the third grader  who ignored what the teacher was asking about how balls bounced during a science lesson because he thought she had said Beyonce and couldn't understand why she would say that.

The same student teacher also relayed a story about students thinking about how they could make the world a better place. One student said they could help animals while another student said they should help the elderly. Together they decided that they would help "old people's animals".

I observe my student teachers every week for the first 4 or 5 weeks of the semester so I can act as a resource for them as they develop their whole class teaching skills and come to terms with the myriad demands of running a class of twenty-something students. The most rewarding part of the job is seeing the joy on a student teacher's face when everything goes to plan and the students learn. 

1 comment:

  1. It is such a great mission, and it is even cooler that he is a teacher in real life. career