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Pros and Cons of student teachers
Old 07-16-2016, 02:46 PM
 
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I'm thinking about getting a student teacher next year. It will be year #12 for me, with all but 1 of those years in the same grade.

Pros:
-I need to do something new and different and have never had a student teacher. It could be a healthy challenge.

-I want to give back to the profession and share my love of teaching with someone new!

-I love the idea of getting to work with students more because there is one more adult in the room.

Cons:
-You have no idea who you will get. It could be a great teacher or someone who is very difficult to work with.

-I like to be in control! It could be hard to hand over the reins.

-Our district is kind of crazy right now. We have no real curriculum. Honestly, it takes so much skill for ME to plan, even with all my experience. I think it would be extremely challenging for a student teacher. There are no teacher guides, scope and sequences, etc. They are also making big changes in the "topics" for what we are teaching next year so I won't have much for the s.t. to fall back on.

-I will have a large class next year and I have a small classroom.


I guess right now I'm leaning towards no, but then I do long for something new and exciting career-wise and this would be one way to do that. Thoughts? Opinions? Experiences?


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Student Teacher
Old 07-16-2016, 05:43 PM
 
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I have had a student teacher for 13 of my 16 years as a teacher. Many of my colleagues are hesitant to accept a student teacher or any preservice teachers. However, I have always found that the benefits outweigh anything negative. Each year I am rejuvenated by my student teacher's positive outlook on the profession, innovative ideas, etc.
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Old 07-16-2016, 07:29 PM
 
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In addition to what you list, I think a huge advantage is that you are forced to do tons of reflection as you model/explain/teach. Having a ST helps me become a better teacher.
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Old 07-16-2016, 07:42 PM
 
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Quote:
-You have no idea who you will get. It could be a great teacher or someone who is very difficult to work with.
This part is the hardest for me to deal with. I just don't do well when adults don't "get" something that the kids do. Subsequently, I just don't take student teachers anymore. I know, it is not very helpful or patient of me, but I now that is a character flaw I have and that I don't match well with student teachers

So, to give back, I started my blog instead. That is much more something suited to my personality.
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Old 07-17-2016, 02:01 PM
 
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I love having a student teacher. However, I had one last year that struggled and it was hard. On top of a very hard class and I sometimes regretted my decision because she really added to my workload.

BUT, on the whole I have found them to be very enthusiastic, helpful, eager, and full of good ideas. It is hard to give up the reins sometimes (especially when you know something is not going to go well!) but you have to remember that it's the only way they will learn, and your students will be just fine. Not only that, the bonus of being "off" when they take over is lovely!


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Old 07-17-2016, 05:51 PM
 
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I have only had one student teacher in the 18 years of teaching...and that was several years ago. I was so excited to have one bc my student teaching experience was wonderful. I was even more excited to learn that mine would be a nontraditional student like me.

Wellllll....let me just say, by the time she left my school, she had ticked off most everyone she came in contact with from the secretary to the music teacher to the SPED dept. She was a know-it-all! She "knew" everything about everything....or so she thought! But trust me, she knew nothing about classroom management. By the time I got my students back, it was a nightmare! I tried to mentor her, and give constructive criticism in the kindest way I could but she would not take it! She knew better than me!

Needless to say, I haven't gotten up my nerve to have another one. However, I have had several practicum students and all of them were wonderful!

Please don't let me scare you from doing it! I know that my experience is not the norm! I look forward to hearing about yours if you choose to accept the challenge. It will be fine, I'm sure!
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good question
Old 07-18-2016, 07:17 AM
 
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I think that you will be disappointed if you think you are going to learn something "new" and fresh from a student teacher. I had a number of very good ones, but they tend to have "old recycled" lessons plans from the internet. It may be that kept on top of new ideas so I tried out new concepts all the time.

The key to a successful experience is to be warm and inviting but to set strong guidelines on expectations and hold them accountable. Don't let some bad vibes go on for more than the first week or things may spiral downwards. I had one who felt that her teacher life ended when she went out the door each day. Most have a good attitude but some come in with no work ethic. A student teacher should have more positives than negatives and you shouldn't be working harder because you have a student. The responsibilities are heavier in the first weeks but the payback should come in the second half of the experience.
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My first time
Old 07-18-2016, 03:25 PM
 
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This is my first time coming up having a student teacher. I am going into my 8th year of teaching. I am very excited to have her. I am worried b/c I am currently pregnant (baby due in Dec.) and I am teaching a new grade level (4th). I pray that I will be able to be as effective and great as my cooperating teacher was when I was student teaching. I think you will do an awesome job! I am looking at it as a learning experience much like you. I think it doesn't matter if he/she is good/bad it is always something that you can learn from them. (If bad, things not to do .
Think it over! I think all teachers can benefit to help new teachers coming into the profession. Good luck! I cannot wait to hear about your final decision.
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Old 07-21-2016, 10:49 PM
 
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I am entering my 7th year and getting my first student teacher this year! She's actually a resident teacher, so she'll be with me for the full year. I'm excited but also nervous. I think giving up control will be difficult for me too, but I'm ready to take on something new and shake things up. My college made us do TONS of different practicums, so I had a lot of mentor teachers and I'm hoping to draw on that experience to help make sure I'm one of the good ones!
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