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MsMonkey MsMonkey is offline
 
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Cooperating Teachers
Old 12-21-2013, 12:36 PM
 
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I will be a cooperating teacher for the first time next quarter. I want to make this best experience possible for my student teacher, so I thought I'd ask some of you future teachers for some insight. What are the top three things you hope for in your cooperating teacher and your student teaching experience in general? Also, what do you hope your cooperating teacher won't do or wish he/she hadn't done? Your insight is very greatly appreciated and I wish you all the best with your endeavors!



Last edited by MsMonkey; 12-21-2013 at 12:55 PM..
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Palmettolace Palmettolace is offline
 
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Old 12-24-2013, 01:02 PM
 
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I just finished my student teaching a few weeks ago, so maybe I have some insight for you!
I really wanted my cooperating teacher to be positive, helpful, and supportive. Student teaching brings a lot of changes to your life at one time and I wish my teacher had been a bit more understanding of how overwhelmed I was.
Also, I would have liked it if my cooperating teacher would have been more clear/consistent with her expectations. For example, at the beginning of the semester she told me she wanted lesson plans by Friday. By the middle of the semester, she was upset if she didn't have them by Wednesday. It's just difficult to meet expectations when they are continually changing!
Hope that helps and you have a fantastic semester with your student teacher!
Merry Christmas!
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Thank you!
Old 12-26-2013, 11:20 AM
 
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Thank you for your insight! I will definitely keep it in mind. Best wishes with your teaching endeavors!
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My Experience
Old 01-04-2014, 09:32 PM
 
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When I student-taught I liked being part of the team. I enjoyed feeling included in team meetings and participating in potluck days and things like that in the staff room. I appreciated that the other grade level teachers also included me and gave me advice as well! My CT allowed me to try new management techniques, bring my own ideas into lessons, and use new technology. I really appreciated the chance to try out my own methods of teaching. My CT had prepared a table for me that I could use as a desk ahead of time. She took time to get to know me as a person and we'd chat every morning before the students came. She shared with me organization and lesson planning tips. At the end of my stay, the students made a book as a class for me and on each page a student had written a sentence about why I would be a good teacher. Also, my CT gave me a gift card to the local teacher store and a gift bag with some pencils, a teacher-themed notepad, some teacher stickers, etc. It wasn't necessary for her to do that but very much appreciated!
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sandycheeks sandycheeks is offline
 
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hi
Old 01-05-2014, 09:00 PM
 
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I student taught for a while because i have several certifications so i've had a handful of CTs.
I think the best and most important tip is to just be nice because student teachers are nervous and shy. I hated feeling left out of conversations, meetings, or even lunch. It made me feel like an outsider. You have to make them feel welcome, like part of the team, if you want to make an impact on them (which will help them make a positive impact on your class!).

You have to let her feel comfortable being with the kids and also give the kids a chance to develop respect to her. To view her as an actual teacher. So dont play up the whole "oh shes not a real teacher yet, shes learning how to be a teacher, shes a student"...No. Act like she's a teacher who deserves the same respect as you. That way she will feel comfortable controlling the class and teaching lessons.

As far as lesson planning goes, at first my teachers let me monitor and assist here and there. Then they slowly gave me little tasks. For example, reading a book to class would be appropriate for starting out. Any type of read aloud, morning meeting, morning work checking...would be good to start. Then the best teacher didnt say "well what do you want to do" she gave be direction. She would ask me if I would like to do such and such by saying hey i was going to read this book and then teach this lesson (or whatever) and she would tell me what to do and say. This was helpful because it let me be natural and feel comfortable without the pressure of restrictions to something scripted or over-planned.

By the middle of my stay i usually was the one to ask about what our schedule would be for me taking over....but you should do that. Say its a 8 week thing. On the 3nd or 4th week I would say okay, since I want you to be ready for solo week next week when the time comes why dont you choose a subject to teach all next week and ill gives you some suggestions and show you what i have planned and you can try it out.......

Each week you can add a little more. By the end of the session she should feel comfortable about it.

What made me feel REALLY good and comfortable was that my teacher actually took off for like 2 days so I was forced to run things without her since she wrote to the sub that I could handle it since i know what were doing and the routine. SO the sub like gave everything for me to do. By the end of that day, I felt like I could do no wrong. So maybe take a sick day before solo week to see what happens. hehe


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Clogs1228 Clogs1228 is offline
 
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Directions
Old 01-13-2014, 11:13 AM
 
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I had a great cooperating teacher her classroom management was great, the kids treated me like a teacher and I felt I did well but I felt her directions were not clear. Whenever it came time to teach she said do whatever you like. I was lost, what did the kids already learn that year? Was I trying to do something above their grade level? It was hard since she did not do lesson plans and I really could not jump in and teach whenever because I had no idea what she had in mind. So my tip is to have lesson plans that the student teacher can understand. Writing prefixes on the weekly plans and ending there is confusing. What prefixes are appropriate, have they covered any yet? Also make time to sit down and go over the lessons with the student teacher, even in the beginning, tell why you choose what you do, how they relate to which standard. We did this in our college classes but I wanted to discuss it more with an actual teacher and see how they thought and make sure I was on the right track. Also give directions in the beginning so the student teacher is not left trying to figure out what you want by themselves. Does that make sense?
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