Last year, when I was working on National Boards certification, I had to complete an entry that asked me to talk about myself as a leader, learner, and collaborator. I used my work with university students and new teachers as one example of how I make an impact as a leader, learner and collaborator. National Boards is all about looking at how we make an impact on student learning. The work I do in talking with university students or new teachers about their teaching directly impacts those students that these teachers teach. I can help the practicum students impact my students and then hopefully take what they have learned as they advance into student teaching and then teaching.
|Jaclyn read and shared Fantastic Mr. Fox with students!|
I hope she is able to continue to share a love of reading with students as she continues on to student teaching and that her enthusiasm for reading and teaching continues to grow. It's an amazing feeling to know I could model how to be a teaching of the will and the skill of reading and even more awesome to know that my modeling did carry over and she understands what I believe teaching reading is all about.
Jaclyn is the 5th senior practicum student I have hosted and I look forward to welcoming more students from the university into my "classroom". Most of my experiences with practicum students have been positive. Only once have I felt like it was a lot of work and energy that I put into making a tiny fraction of an impact. I have to honestly say that was hard and sometimes exhausting but even that one time when I felt like the student still had a lot of growing to do, I felt like I made a difference no matter how miniscule.
|Jaclyn with Eric Rohmann and Lois Lowry|
And that's why I continue to offer to be a cooperating teacher. It's not easy, it does take extra work, and sometimes patience but I know that I can make some kind of a difference - big or small. The bonus is working with an amazing practicum student because it makes me feel like I made a massive impact. I'm sad that I won't have my sidekick with me on Monday who I can talk to and brainstorm with but I'm elated knowing that her experience was so positive and that I had the opportunity to work with someone who will be a great addition to the field of teaching.
I recommend hosting a practicum student or a student teacher. Have you hosted a practicum student of a student teacher? How was the experience for you? What was the highlight of the experience for you? Do you have any advice for someone who is thinking about being a cooperating teacher? I'd love to hear about your experience or your thoughts!