It’s a Tuesday morning, the kind of morning where the weather says it could possibly rain. You don’t know that yet, so you grab an umbrella as you walk out the door. Umbrellas tend to be metaphors in Western culture. You always see them marking funerals, sheltering lovers, or decorating the passage of city traffic. Perhaps umbrellas have this spot in our imagination, because the very act of carrying an umbrella is equivalent to preparation. You are preparing for the inclement, for a future you cannot see. It doesn’t mean that it’s a terrible future–people dance in the rain with umbrellas, but nonetheless it’s a future to prepare for today.
Umbrellas remind me of student teaching a little.
We’ve been spending all of ourselves to prepare for student teaching.
All the state tests, finals to pass, paperwork to submit have led us up to this point–this Tuesday morning the day before student teaching. I carry my umbrella.
That Tuesday, The School of Education was hosting a “Student Teaching Bootcamp”. We entered the Education Lab to warm greetings from Professor DAmato, Dr. Looney, Professor Nygard, Professor Luba, and Professor Mallory. These people have been standing behind us for a long time, several years in fact.
We spent the morning listening to Professor DAmato explain the forms needed to complete during our placements. Logistical information is important. Logistical information is really important when you are trying to finish your certification and graduate in December. I really appreciate that Professor DAmato took the time not only to list out all this information we would need, but also to organize it for us.
After that, we moved to lunch where we all gathered in the common area of the Ed. Lab for wraps, salad, and summer stories. One of my fellow student teachers told us about her job scooping ice cream for the summer, and another shared the lessons God had been teaching her. We all know each other. We’re all rooting for each other, moving towards the goal of graduation.
Once finished, we started the second session with Dr. Looney in which she gave us a bird’s eye view of the edTPA. For those of you who may not know, the edTPA is the final step required in the process for an Education Major’s graduation and certification. You have to videotape yourself teaching, and compile this long document justifying what you did and why. It’s a project you need to have studied before starting. Dr. Looney explained many of its intricacies, and while we still have much to learn, it was encouraging to see how all the different parts fit together.
Student Teaching Bootcamp was a lot of information, but every piece will be necessary for our success in the coming weeks. I’m grateful for the School of Education and the opportunity to attend. Stay tuned for more updates on our experiences with student teaching, and pack your umbrella this fall.