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What to ask when student teaching?

I'm going to start student teaching pretty soon and I wanted to know what to look for or like what to ask the teacher that I'm student teaching with. Also how was your experience with student teaching, what should I avoid? #teaching #education #teacher #student #college

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6 answers

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Monica’s Answer

Student teaching can be overwhelming in the beginning because of the unknown expectations from your assigned teacher. Are you doing your student teaching in elementary, middle, or high school setting? And, will it be in a inclusion class? Well, regardless of the setting I would recommend the following questions for your teacher and supervisor:
- What skill are you currently teaching and how has the grasp the concept?
-How do you track the students progress of mastery to determine what to teach?
- What is the standard and objective?
-Are there any students with learning physical or disabilities that I should be aware of when planning a lesson?
- What are some area of strength and weakness in my lesson?
-Is this a honors or regular class?
-How should I asses their learning throughout out the lesson ( check for understanding)?
- How should negative and positive behavior be addressed?
- what classroom management strategies work for your classroom?

I hope this gives you a general idea of how to start.
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Sheila’s Answer

Hi Andrea:

I recommend you ask the teacher you are working with. You could also ask other teachers at the school. You might get different answers from each person but, I suggest you listen, ask questions, observe, and take notes. If there are other student teachers get to know them and share experiences. During my research here are some questions you could ask . . .

• Are my objectives clear?
• Did I teach my objective?
• Is my lesson timed well?
• Do I remain on one topic too long or too short?
• Do I use a clear voice?
• Was I organized?
• Is my handwriting legible?
• Do I use proper speech?
• Do I move around the classroom enough?
• Did I use a variety of teaching materials?
• Do I show enthusiasm?
• Do I have make good eye-contact with the students?
• Did I explain the lesson effectively?
• Were my directions clear?
• Did I show confidence and knowledge of the subject?

• What are the requirements for lesson plans? Do you have a particular format that you would prefer for me to use?
• How often will we meet for planning?
• What are your goals for the semester, and how can I help you meet your goals?
• How do you group students in the classroom? Is there any methods that you use?
• What are your grading procedures? How do you track grades for your students?
• Do you have any ESL students or students with IEPs? Is it possible to see the IEP?
• What is your classroom discipline policy? What strategies do you use when one of your students misbehaves?
• Do you have any classroom bulletin boards or displays? Would you like me to change them while I’m student teaching?
• How do you communicate with parents? How often do you communicate with parents?
• What is your field trip policy? Will I be responsible for planning a field trip during my time as a student teacher?
• What are some of the specific challenges that you face in this grade or specific subject?
• What resources do you use in your classroom? Are there any websites, books, or other resources that I can peruse before starting my time as a student teacher?
• What are your expectations as far as my independent teaching time?
• How does your school or school district view standardized testing? What can I do to prepare the students for the exams?
• What is your contact information? What’s the best way to reach you outside of school hours?

Best of luck to you on your journey!

Sheila recommends the following next steps:

Review the comments shared by the CV Professionals
Student Teacher Observation Questions •
Questions before Student Teaching •
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Stephanie’s Answer

Hi Andrea,

Welcome to the most fabulous career - becoming a teacher! Student teaching ..... I was very nervous and didn't ask many questions. I was too afraid of not looking capable or smart. But that was not a great decision. ASK QUESTIONS! I think the questions you want to ask are about:
* managing students - how is the classroom arranged and how does that aid student engagement?
* curriculum - I learned that the school had really old textbooks and so I was penalized for writing lessons based on old books .... ask questions about curriculum - what are the students learning and why
* standards - how does the teacher or the curriculum weave the standards into the lessons?

Watch and learn ..... how does each start? How are students recognized and encouraged in their daily learning?

I found this blog that might be helpful - lots of really good questions:

Take care and you will do a fabulous job!

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Dave’s Answer

Hi Andrea,
Student teaching is where the rubber meets the road. All of your classroom and practical experiences so far will probably not prepare you for student teaching. I had an awful student teacher mentor. On my first day she introduced me to class and walked out. I never saw her again for the rest of the nine weeks.
Here are some things you need to find out ahead of time: what does this mentor expect you to do in the first week. How many other teachers in the building are you going to be able to also have contact with in their classes. Ask that mentor what their daily life is like. This would include things like how soon before class starts to get there, how many breaks they get during the day, and when they finally get to go home. You should also ask him about the paperwork load that they will carry. You should definitely find out about how to test the students once you start teaching them. Some people have standardized tests, some people make their own tests.
One of the most important things that you can ask a veteran teacher, that is someone who is taught or at least 20 years, is about their 403b and retirement plan. If you start early, you will have several million dollars by the time you're done. Sounds exciting huh?
I will tell you that teaching is much harder than people realize. Your responsible for a lot of students. Lots of things will go wrong, and sometimes there's nothing you could do about it. Your job is to help every student, but you can't save every student. Never let a student fail! If they want to fail they'll have to work at it.
Your student teaching should give you a bird's-eye view of what happens when you're in charge all the time! Good luck. It will be an adventure!
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Kikanza’s Answer

Ask the mentor teacher about her philosophy of teaching. Why does she teach? How did she choose the topic and grade? What has she learned that she did not learn in school? What is the best thing a student ever said to you? What keeps you motivated?
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Praful’s Answer

i would suggest to Ask the teacher
- how to be a Successful Student Teacher ?
- Is there support for student teachers like any scholarship/internship ?