Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Student Teachers

I've been subbing all week for a bunch of teachers who have student teachers.  Tuesday I was in a science class and the student teacher was fabulous.  It seemed like he had been teaching for years.  He was teaching about genomes and alleles and genetics, and kept using "Let's say your parents mate and blahblahblah" as an example for how the offspring would turn out with blue eyes or red hair or whatever.  I LOVED how every single kid flinched every time the guy said the words "your parents mate."  I mentioned that after the first class and he was totally aware of it and was doing it on purpose.  Brilliant.  Despite their squeamishness, the kids loved him.  All I had to do all day was sit in the room and play Angry Birds.

Monday was a tough day because I was in one of my favorite third grade rooms and their student teacher was horrendous.  One example:   She said she wanted to teach math because it is her specialty. (At this point she should be teaching everything all day, but her cooperating teacher won't let her.) It was a lesson on multiplying and dividing 5s.

The first thing they were supposed to do was copy down these words: division, divider, divisor and quotient.  This was written up on the smart board and she told them to copy it.  She didn't tell them where to copy it (on a blank sheet of paper? in their math journals?) but to give her the benefit of the doubt, I'm guessing they copy vocab on a regular basis and knew where to put it.  But they didn't do it.  Nobody copied it because she barreled ahead with the lesson.  They didn't even have time to get out paper to write the stuff down.

She rushed through a few boring word problems, never once using the words division, divisor, divider or quotient; only stopping long enough to occasionally bitch at someone for not paying attention.  She wouldn't listen to them if they had questions, and she said things like, "Don't come ask me how to do this later because I won't tell you."  You won't?!  Nice TEACHER.

The kids were DONE with math after that lesson.  The scheduled time for math was up and it was clearly time to move on.  She tried to forge ahead with another lesson but the kids simply couldn't do it.  The first lesson was too torturous to even think of starting a new one.  The teacher sat up at the front of the class and pouted and said, "Oh great, now I'M going to get yelled at because we didn't do this lesson.  Thanks a lot, guys."

Who does that?!

The highlight of the day was when the kids were doing a phonics worksheet on homophones.  They were supposed to choose the right word to put in the blank in a sentence.  One girl called me over because she was having trouble with one of the problems.  The homophones were "hare/hair" and the sentence was "Gladys washes her __________ every day."  The little girl said, "I don't know what to put." and I thought she wasn't sure what a hare was so I told her it was a wild bunny.  She said, "I know what a hare is, I don't know which one to put in the space because they both make sense."  I almost collapsed from the cuteness.  I can't express how much I love the image of a little girl bathing a jackrabbit every single day.  I said, "Well, I suppose you could wash a hare every day but I bet you'd have a lot of scratches!"

("What? I always walk like this.")

1 comment:

  1. So many people think teaching is easy and that any one can do it. Glad you are showing that our job is not necessarily that easy. The girl with the hair/hare is too cute... and very correct that the prompt was written in a confusing manner.