Student Teachers Get Head Start through NIU's Unique Program

By Kunz, Tona | Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), May 8, 2002 | Go to article overview

Student Teachers Get Head Start through NIU's Unique Program


Kunz, Tona, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)


Byline: Tona Kunz Daily Herald Staff Writer

Christina Garcia finished her student teaching at Geneva Middle School Friday, but she'll remain a familiar face in the classroom until school ends.

Why?

Because she feels a bond with her students not generated by traditional student teaching programs. It's one of the many benefits Geneva and St. Charles students have realized after a year of participating in a pilot intensive teaching program with Northern Illinois University.

Rather than spending 40 to 80 hours observing the classroom during a semester, student teachers spend 180 to 400 hours observing in the fall and the remainder of the year co-teaching.

"There is absolutely no question this intensive program is far beyond what they can get in the traditional program," said Geneva Middle School Spanish teacher Rolanda Price. After mentoring future teachers in both types of college programs, Price said she would choose this program every time.

"It is better for the student teachers, and it is better for our regular students, because basically they have two teachers in the classroom," she said.

Student teachers get the nuts and bolts, such as learning classroom management, student names, school policies and resources out of the way before they ever take over a class. …

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