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Thursday, September 5, 2013

My First!

You read it right. She is my first. My first student teacher is here! I am beyond excited.

Two weeks ago I had the chance to visit her college, meet some of her wonderful professors, and listen to what is expected of my as her mentor teacher. Ms. M is wonderful. She was born to be a teacher.

While driving to her campus, memories of my student teaching experience began to come back to me. Back in the day, I was asked to pick three schools. I happened to be lucky enough to get my top choice.
I remember the nerves of the first day, meeting my mentor teachers and then the kids! I was placed in a first grade classroom for the first half of my placement. My teacher made me feel at home from day one. She let me create my own things and show her how much I wanted to be like her :)
My second placement was in a third grade classroom. It was honestly a bit more challenging, my cursive handwriting was not the greatest :) But my mentor teacher was top notch.
Both of my mentor teachers guided me and helped me with everything. I observed throughout the school. I attended all the meetings. I tried to be the modeled student teacher. I wanted nothing more, than to say thank you for allowing me to be in their classrooms.
I am still in touch with both of my mentor teachers. I love them and respect them...many years later.

This time is my time to pay it forward, so I began thinking about...

And this is how I tried to make her feel at home...

I made her a cute binder, wrote her a welcome note, got some goodies for her, and decorated her desk. Everyone in my building has two desks. I have always hated having an extra piece of furniture, but I am not allowed to get rid of it. It finally has a purpose!

She also received some desk supplies and other goodies are coming her way :)

Knowing that my babies will be taken care of is the best part of this progress. Now I just need to make sure I do my best to guide her through the process of my regular day to day adventures. I am also hoping to be the friend she turns to ten years from now.

Any advice? I want to make sure Ms. M. has an amazing experience with us. What is on your must list for student teachers?

Her binder turned out super cute. I included everything I thought could be helpful. I ended up creating this...
Find it HERE.

Find it HERE.

I'd love send two of you a copy of my binder. Leave me a comment with any suggestions/advice.  How can I be the best mentor teacher?  :)


  1. Be honest with them! Teaching them how to really analyze data and how to truly control a class!

  2. As a recent teacher grad, classroom management was the one thing that we really never got to learn hands-on in college. We learn the reasoning, the skills teachers need to have, some ideas, etc. but student teaching allowed me the much-needed practice to manage a classroom. Go over your management plan with her, the why, the how, the implementation, and give her the opportunities to manage the class.

    The Gypsy Teacher

  3. I agree with Allie; definitely go over your management plan. It can be one of the hardest things to figure out as a student teacher. Definitely give them experience with working with the data that is constantly coming across your desk. They need to know how to analyze it and then use it to improve their teaching. Keep a positive attitude, but also don't sugar coat everything.

    Confessions of a 3rd Grade Teacher

  4. I have had over a dozen! My best advice is gradual release to them. I also tell them I won't ever let them sink but I am going to trust them to be prepared, have lessons well thought out, and not to be afraid to switch things up even right in the middle of a lesson! I have a student teacher and I tell mine a sign of a great teacher is one who realizes in the middle of a lesson whether or to to switch gears ( reteach, move because they got it, scrap it all together if things aren't going well).

  5. always have open and consistent communication. always make her feel welcome. always include her and make her feel that she can make decisions.

    I would love this binder because I have tried to get my roads together but I never seem to have the time.


  6. oops it is

  7. Wow your student teacher is going to have such a wonderful learning experience in your classroom!You've really gone out of your way to make her feel welcome :) My advice would be teaching them organizational tricks and time-savers and how to collect and analyze student data. Lindsey -

  8. I am a little late to this party BUT I have had a few student teachers and it is a wonderful experience for both of you and most importantly your students! It is a gift to have an extra pair of hands in the room. Classroom and behavior management are key. Most of my student teachers are timid in correcting annoying behaviors. I make sure they know they have the "green" light to go ahead and correct unwanted behaviors and that I will be right by their side to back them up. Your binder looks fabulous! Going on my wishlist. I hope this experience is special for both of you.
    Bright Concepts 4 Teachers

  9. I am getting ready for my 1st student teacher right now! I found out today that she will be starting with me after Christmas break! My own student teaching days were not that long ago and I can really remember that classroom managment was my biggest worry! My mentors were great at modeling, and then letting me sail! I really enjoyed having a set aside time each day where I could ask questions and have her full attention!

    I hope your exprience has been wonderful- I'm sure you have many more student teachers on the way!



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