Monday, July 02, 2012

Drawback, and a benefit.

There’s good and bad taking over a classroom from a person who is leaving the teaching profession.

  • Good:  You get all the cool stuff they leave because they don’t plan on using it again.
  • Bad: You have to go through all the crap you’ll never use to get to the good stuff.

I spent a few hours up at school today going through my new classroom and finally got all the crap I don’t want out of there, and organized the stuff I’m keeping.  Feels good to have that taken care of.

I also met with my student-teacher for next year.  I’m part of a program through the University of Utah that pays math-teachers-to-be to spend an entire year with a mentor teacher.  She will be there from day-1, for 2 of my classes, until the last day of school.  It’s a gradual release program, at first she will just be there observing me as I set up the classroom expectations and procedures.  Once things get going, she will start interacting more and more with the class; assisting me, co-teaching, teaching mini-lessons, taking over a whole class here and there, going solo, until the the last term where she will take over every aspect, just like a regular student-teacher.

I really wish all student teaching included the beginning of the school year, I certainly wish I had gone through this kind of program.  It took me a really horrible first year of teaching to realize the importance of the expectations and procedures set up at the beginning of the school year.


Lisa Shafer said...

Oh, I HATE cleaning all that crap out of a room when I move in! It doesn't matter whether the former teaching is moving to a new school or just a new room; there's always crap to clean. Glad you got yours finished.
That sounds like a great teaching program -- and you're lucky, too, since she'll be taking two classes for most of the year.
I agree about student teaching beginning at the first of the year. I was very fortunate, as I began on the first day of school for a brand new school. Of course, we didn't have any text books or copy paper, but that was good in the long run because it made me be creative with how I taught.

Alexia said...

That sounds like a very worthwhile setup. Here, we typically get trainee teachers (not allowed to call them "student" teachers any more for some crazy politically-correct reason) for 7 or 8 weeks. Your system sounds really good.

Max Sartin said...

Lisa - Yeah, it's nice to have it done. This is the first time I've had an actual student teacher, it'll be an experience for me. I've had student teachers observe me, even do some lessons in my class, but never take over the class from me. It will be weird having someone take over "my" class from me.
Alexia - Shhhh! Someone might get the idea here too and we'll have to start calling them "trainee teachers" too. This is actually an unusual program here too, most of our "trainees" are only there for 8 weeks or so too. The University got a special grant to run this specifically for math teachers.