Sunday, May 8, 2011

End of the Line

As I approach my final student teaching week, I am overwhelmed with feelings of excitement, anxiety, and pride. I am excited about upcoming festivities: certification event, graduation, and parties galore. I am anxious over getting a job, and preparing for my final days with my current students. Finally, I am proud of the work I have done so far. Since my decision to return to school at the age of 27 as a mother of two, the road has been long and at times overpowering. I owe my husband, parents, and aunt a lot due to their never-ending support. I never once had to miss an internship day due to the health of a child. My family was always there; ready to jump in when I needed a helping hand. Although I have enjoyed my time in the ASU program, I am ready to get out in the real world and begin applying everything I’ve learned.

This last week was a great week! One of my students is known for taking quite a bit longer to finish tasks than her peers. These can be written tasks, as well as anything physical. Well this week, she was on the ball, to say the least. The students began a new chapter book two weeks ago, and just now started to take the reins in regard to completing flow maps and writing a chapter summary. The students were given around 35 minutes to do these written tasks. Only two students accomplished all tasks, while the rest had to take it home for homework. This student was one of the individuals that finished in the allotted time. We were SO excited! It was a huge breakthrough, and something that we were talking about all week. When I asked her why she was able to finish everything, she was brutally honest and said “I didn’t want homework.” Now that I know she can work that quickly, she better watch out. I’ve got her number! J

I’ve noticed that this time of year is tough on a few students. Some are starting to burn out, and have been developing a bit of an attitude when presented with class work. One student, when asked why he didn’t complete an assignment, said that he just didn’t want to. My MT ended up calling in his parents for a conference. I was fortunate to attend, and can say that it was definitely a learning experience. Watching the way my MT communicated with the parents was awe-inspiring. She was an advocate for the student, yet was sensitive to the needs of all parties involved. When things began to get a little heated, my MT was able to switch things around and get everyone back on track with very little effort. To be honest, I am dreading that first meeting I have with a student’s parents. I hope that I can be diplomatic and ensure that all parties walk away feeling heard and with an understanding of what to do from then on.

Good luck to all my fellow classmates as they wrap up their student teaching placements and prepare for graduation. I can't believe we'll all be teachers soon :) Well, long as the dumb economy plays nice.