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After having ds 2.5 years ago, I decided to make a career change to education. I went back to school in a Saturday program for teaching certification. I have completed my coursework and begin my student teaching stint this week with a third grade class in a middle-middle/upper income area.<br><br>
I would love to hear some words or wisdom, advice, warnings, etc. from other teachers out there. What would you suggest I do to get the most out of this experience? If you have had a student teacher before, what did you expect from him or her? What did you like or dislike about the experience?<br><br>
And one more question, I am pregnant, 23 weeks, and showing A LOT! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"> Just wondering how I should answer questions from students if they arise.<br><br>
Thanks everyone. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up"> First off, CONGRATULATIONS at reaching this point in your education and career. Your determination and commitment is paying off!<br><br>
I teach environmental education to fifth graders and last spring I worked until my due date. I worked with each class 3 times during my nine months and I never got any real unusual questions except "are you pregnant?" !!!!!!! Ha, I gained 50 pounds so that made me feel good for a second! Sometimes I would crack a joke "Naah I just ate a lot over Winter Break" I also told them, "Today kids we are gonna learn about the birds... and the bees..." then see if any of them got it. Or if I dropped something I would ask a kid to pick it up and say I didn't want to fold the baby in half then watch their eyes get big before telling them I'm only joking. Of course you want to be professional but I think relaxed humor (at appropriate times) can get you through potentially uncomfortable situations with kids. Usually they just wanted to guess if it was a boy or a girl and what names.<br><br>
Third graders should have a clue where babies come from but if you get a real precocious type just tell her/him to ask their mom or dad.<br><br>
As for student teaching, the best advice I got from my cooperating teacher was "You always know more than they do" meaning experience wise. I taught high school honors and I was afraid some whiz kid would show me up! Other than that just arrive early and stay late and since you have someone cookin inside get to bed extra early! Also try to do something for the school or class thats not required such as attending or helping with a play.<br><br>
Best of luck to you. Just from your post I know you are a great teacher and mama!<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin">
 

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HI! I have been a teacher for 7 years now. I was fortunate enough to have a wonderful student teaching position when I first started. The only problem was that I thought that I KNEW IT ALL already! So, my first piece of advice is to be very open minded. Even if your mentor teacher does not implement the style of teaching that you think is right, watch him/her carefully, because you never know what small tidbit you might pick up from that teacher that might be helpful to you.<br>
Secondly, your mentor teacher is receiving some kind of compensation for mentoring you. Either they are getting payment, credit, or some other perk. Therefore, they are technically working for you. What I mean is that you should not be afraid to ask, record, inquire about what they are doing in the classroom and why. If they are an excellent mentor, they should be pleased to help you and answer all of your questions!<br>
Thirdly, all of my friends who have student teachers in their classrooms truly appreciate a student teacher who takes their job seriously in terms of planning, being mentally there throughout the day, and being extremely well prepared for their classes. Consider it a paying job and it will truly prepare you for a real paying position.<br>
Enjoy your time and make sure that you take lots of pictures of the students engaged in lessons that you plan. Save copies of student work in order to put together a wonderful portfolio for your interviews. Just really, really enjoy the experience. Your first class is always a special one in your heart.
 

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I also teach in Northern NJ now (after teaching for 6 years in NYC). I love teaching and spending time with my students. I see that you are a Northern NJite too! If you have any questions or just need to talk about your experience, please feel free to e-mail me at: <a href="mailto:[email protected]">[email protected]</a><br><br>
I am expecting my first baby any day now and am always looking for new mamas and teachers to meet up with since I am fairly new to New Jersey! You seem to be both of those things (or will be soon!) Bravo to you for pursuing your teaching while you are expecting...I hope it goes smoothly for you. We'll be cheering for you here in Montclair!
 

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I've been teaching for 11 years now and Kamilia's words of wisdom seem great. I've been sharing a contract for that past several years and this is the first year in a while that I've had daily contact with the students (I teach the first few hours of a K program). I have only this advcie to add tonight (aaah-choo): boost your immune system in any way you can. Wash your hands often (especially after holding a student's pencil). If you have long hair, wear it up. Lice can make it's way through schools very quickly and you probably don't want to deal with that while pregnant! (Though I've never once had lice and it's gone through my classes many times). Get as much sleep as you can and have fun! Both my team teacher and I got a cold one week into this school year and we're still fighting it.<br>
As far as kids asking about being pregnant, they'll likely just be excited, want to rub your belly and ask if its a boy or girl and what the name will be. That's how it was for me anyway.<br>
Good Luck!
 
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