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February 22, 2011

The Student Teaching Journey Continues

Written By: Justin Nacarato
Category: Career Path
X The Student Teaching Journey Continues

The Student Teaching Journey Continues

Three weeks have already gone by! Student teaching is very overwhelming at the beginning, especially when you jump into a classroom that has already been through half of a year. The toughest part for me right now is learning the routine. I’m getting the hang of it but I haven’t mastered it yet.

The Trials of the Student Teaching Journey

Also, not every day has the same rigid schedule. In an inclusive classroom with some students being pulled out for reading, speech, special instruction, or whatever their needs may be, it’s a battle choosing what lesson or parts of a lesson can be missed by those students. This can change the routine around a little bit from time to time. I’ll get the hang of it!

So far, I’ve taken on some classroom responsibilities. I guide the Daily Language Review and Connections activities in the morning, and I lead one of the centers during center time in the afternoon. This past week was also my first time writing the Monday letter to the students. I wrote about myself and they had to respond in their letters giving details about themselves. I enjoy reading students’ writing and responding to them. One student in particular was so excited when he saw that I had written him back. Seeing his face light up when he turned his letter over gave me that amazing feeling that I know I did something that made a difference. That’s why I believe writing as a form of communication is important because some students have difficulty talking about things but when you give them a chance to write, you see a whole different side of them. Some students are more comical on paper than they act in class!

This week, even though it’s another short week, I really want to work on planning and writing those plans down so I don’t freeze after a lesson trying to remember what was planned next. Yes, I did buy a lesson plan book! Hopefully it’ll help me not only write down the plans for each day but master learning the class routine, too.

Watch for Justin’s next installment as he continues to chronicle his journey while student teaching.

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  • Chair Pocket
    March 2, 2011

    I’ve really enjoyed reading Justin’s posts. My father developed a Field Experiences-type program for his teacher education studentsand those were a great help in terms of helping the students understanding the job (and understanding if they really wanted to be a teacher) at a much earlier stage of their academic career than more conventional studen teaching assignments.

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  • Justin Nacarato
    February 27, 2011

    We have “Field Experiences” every semester. They’re like student teaching but not as intense. We were required 110 hours per semester. I was in 3rd grade for Language Arts block, kindergarten for methods (Math, Science, Soc. Studies) block, and PreK for my early childhood intervention specialist block. Plus, we had a PreK field experience for my last semester for my Associate’s Degree. Experience is a plus and builds classroom management skills. Thank you all for the feedback and support! I plan on submitting another post after I finish the week of the 28th of February! Another snow day set us back again…

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  • Denise Patrick
    February 26, 2011

    I’m a Junior at a University that sends us into the classroom our Junior year in an internship. It’s almost like student teaching, so when we do our student teaching senior year we have experience. It’s great to hear how things are going for you and I’m glad you are enjoying it! Good luck on the rest of the semester!!

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  • Janet from Creative Writing
    February 23, 2011

    One of the good things that come from students teaching in the middle of the academic year is that it can prepare you for the possibility of getting that first job in the middle of the year! Both of my first two teaching positions were mid-year vacancies. I’m convinced that if you can make smooth transitions mid-year, you’ve got what it takes! Best of luck on your teaching journey, and I’m enjoying reading about your adventures!

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  • Anna Puskas
    February 22, 2011

    I am also a student teacher, just coming into a well established classroom on my 4th week now. I have the same sometimes overwhelming feeling of getting used to the schedule, and what comes next as I teach. I have quickly discovered this school year that passion for the job and organization are the most essential pieces of being a teacher. Of course efficient classroom management is a valuable skill as well. One thing I am pleasantly surprised with is how I do not get tired of the job, no matter how much work is involved. I cannot wait to have my own classroom, although I am expecting it to be a wait after some substituting at least. Glad there are other student teachers feeling the same things as I am and going through a similar experience. Enjoy the rest of your student teaching experience, and good luck!

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  • Penny
    February 22, 2011

    The #1 tip I give my student interns: Don’t ask a question if you don’t really want an answer. “Do you want to do math now?” instead of “It’s time for math.” What are you going to do when the student (and there is usually one) says “no”.

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  • Barbara G.
    February 22, 2011

    Justin, I am so proud of you; thank you for sharing your reflections. Your students are blessed to be part of your class! Listen with your heart and you will be fine.

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  • virginia ott
    February 22, 2011

    Becoming a teacher, when the class was already together is one of the toughest things. It will be very different when you get your own class and can set your schedule. Keep going though it sounds great.

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