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Student Teacher Welcoming and Sending Off Ideas

Compiled By: stlcardinals

These are great ideas to help you make your new student teacher feel as welcome as possible at the beginning and to help you show your appreciation for her at the end. Enjoy!

first student teacher
Posted by: Trish


First, I want to applaud you for taking a student teacher. It must be quite difficulty to do this. I am very territorial and I do not know if I could do this. I just completed my student teaching. After the first month of observing, I took over completely for the following 3 1/2 months. I can tell you that I had extreme difficulty with the idea that I will not finish the school year with 'my' kids. HA! I cried almost the entire day yesterday.
Ok.. what made my cooperating teacher the best. (As a matter of fact, she won the cooperating teacher of the year award at our banquet)
First, have a place set up for your student teacher. This will make her feel like a part of the class, not just a visitor. My teacher had a name plate made for me. That made me feel great. Te students also made me posters with my name on them that I posted on the wall next to my desk. When you introduce her/him to your class.. introduce her as a teacher. That was one of the highest compliments that I received. My cooperating teacher would leave computer printed banners/posters on my desk to mark little milestones with congrats on it. EX. "Trish, you are doing a great job! You have made it half way! I am proud of the way you have grown." And with that she would give me a small gift, like a teacher's key chain, a stapler, little things like that. Give criticism but constructive. If you don't, she won't know what she is doing wrong.
Include her in the background of the children. After all, she will be very involved with them while she is there. If she knows their basic background, she can teach them better. At least, I know that I could.
Get her involved with the parents. Give her the task of contacting a few every so often. Even if it is just to say something good about the students. Which I feel is just as important if not more.
And most importantly, make her feel like she is your friend and equal. She will know that she really isn't your equal, and that you are her 'boss' but it is so nice of a feeling to think that your cooperating teacher thinks that highly of you. After all, you will become her mentor. And the highest compliment is to feel that your cooperating teacher thinks of you that way. Mine told the principal that it was like watching herself teach. I highly admire my teacher and was overjoyed to know that she compared herself to me.
I hope this all made sense.
I wish you all the luck.

Student Teacher
Posted by: I had one

I hope you have a great experience with yours! When I student taught, both of my cooperative teachers were fabulous and I learned so much! Unfortunately, when I had my first student teacher, it wasn't the greatest experience. I won't go into that, but you can get all kinds. What I have learned from having one and being one, here are my tips:

Set up a desk for her. It doesn't have to be a huge teacher desk, but needs to be bigger than a student one. Put the survival basket there for her. Make sure you put some paper, pencils, paper clips, pens, etc. there for her. This gives her her own space (and you can still have yours).

Meet with her beforehand. I called mine and set up a time to meet. I welcomed her and gave her a set of my rules and procedures.I discussed dress code, emergency procedures, lesson plans, etc. I told her I didn't mind her trying new things, but you must insist that for the sake of the children (and YOUR sanity after she leaves---you don't have to add that!! )you need to keep the rules and consequence in place. (insist, but nicely, because my student teacher wanted to change EVERYTHING!!)I even gave mine our school agenda that has all the school rules, procedures etc. in it.

Show her around the school so she will know where to find the teacher restrooms, lounge, etc.

Gradually let her take over--in our district you do two placements, the first you ease into it, the second you go right into teaching fully the second week. Plan accordingly.

Check into your school's rules on confidentiality. I let mine mark right/wrong on work, but I had to give the grades. I couldn't let her do that, so find out beforehand!

Be honest! For her lessons, find atleast one positive comment, what she could improve on, and a plan to reach that. Go over the day with her each day. Also, be honest with the university teacher as well (even though they may not really want to hear it). Document everything--copying her lesson plans, feedback sheet, etc.

I hope this is a good experience for you and her!

Student Teacher
Posted by: Bonnie

I've has several student teachers. I try to give them an information packet to helpd them become familiar with our class and school. I give them a copy of my letter to parents, a class list, the PTO handbook, a copy of my plans for that week (and each week that I write them, until they take over), a planbook, and a summary of the state core standards. They start out observing and helping indivual students who need help. The student teacher generally starts with something easy like spelling and we gradually add curriculum areas until they are running the whole day. At the begining, I write the lesson plans. Eventually they write the plans after discussing them with me. I am felxible and let them try new things, however, I want to be aware of what they are doing and what approach they are using.

A former principal would not let us leave the student teachers alone. My current principal lets them handle the class alone. If I stay in the room all of the time, I have a tendency to interrupt and the kids turn to me to ask questions. Student teachers often are uncomfortable discipining students with the co-operating teacher in the classroom. Once the student teacher is comfortable, I drift in and out of the room.

I try to spend some time at the end of the day with the student teacher to discuss their perceptions of their lessons, as well as mine. I try to start with positive feedback and then offer suggestions.

I have noticed that many student teachers concentrate on the lessons that they prepare for their supervisor and give less thought to other lessons presented that day.

I have learned something from each of the student teachers that I have worked with. Another adult in the classroom can be a great help.

student teacher
Posted by: Margaret Broome

I will be having my second student teacher this fall. Actually, this one was in my classroom as an intern this spring, and she will be returning to do her student teaching this fall.

I have found that it works real well for me to include my student teachers in all my activities. This means that when a group of us get together to bowl, for instance, I ask her to join us. I give her every opportunity to get to know the other teachers, and vice versa. This way, she becomes more a part of things and becomes more comfortable. It helps me get to know her better and her to get to know me better, and we are then better able to communicate.

I make sure to show her around the school, introducing her to all the "important" people and all the faculty and staff. I show her where materials are stored, what she is able to access, and what she will need for me or someone else to do for her.

I also make sure as many parents as possible get to meet her. I will be writing about her in my parent letter at the beginning of this year as an introduction. This is something new for me, too, as my last student teacher came into the class a little later in the semester. But I would have written the parents about her at that time, anyway.

I have REALLY enjoyed having student teachers. The hardest part for me has been relinquishing responsibilty for the class. There are some things I will not relinquish; for instance, writing instruction because this is critically important in my school. However, I will certainly include her in the instruction. And I will clear this with her advisor in advance.

I hope you find it as much fun as I have. Good luck to you both.

Margaret B.

Welcoming a Student Teacher
Posted by: Joy

Hi Jen,

The last two posts had some really good ideas. Here are a few more:

* Decorate a desk for the student teacher and don't forget to make a nametag for the desk. Fill it with some teacher supplies.

* Fill a basket with student teacher goodies: some snacks, fun colored pens, stickers, markers, post-it notes, etc.

* Purchase a disposible camera or encourage your student teacher to buy one. Have this handy at all times so that you can take pictures of the student teacher working with the children.

* Make some cute labels with the student teacher's name so that he/she can label his/her materials.

* Purchase a 14 gallon Rubbermaid tub for the student teacher to store his/her files. These tubs fit file folders perfectly. You may also want to purchase a package of file folders to add to the box.

* Make a binder with important school information: names of secretaries, principal, other teachers and staff members, map of the school, school procedures, any welcome notes you may have sent to the parents, supplies list, book lists, perhaps a school calendar, any other fun teacher stuff or articles that are interesting.

*Take a class picture on a digital camera and give it to the student teacher so that he/she can begin to learn the children's names.

*Make a quick welcome book with letters and pictures made by the kids.

I hope that you have fun with your student teacher.


Student Teacher Goodbye Gift
Posted by: CageyBee

The following were ideas we did in Kindergarten and first grade over a period of years. As I type it out I'm chuckling thinking how my sixth graders would LOVE to do some of these now!

My friend made a fabulous gift for her student teacher...and we all wanted one, too! She painted a terra cotta flower pot on the outside in a pale blue but she left the rim natural. Then she painted grass on the bottom third and added 19 stems and leaves. When this was dry she had each child (18 of them) make two on a stem and one any place else. The color of the paint depended on their predrawn suggestions for the "garden". For example, one little girl made a brown thumbprint on a stem and a red thumbprint on the grass. When everyone added their thumbprint she let them add the details. The little girl with the brown center turned that flower into a daisy and her red print was a ladybug crawling in the grass. My friend had a super thin black Sharpie and she added their names in teeny tiny print. She also contributed with her thumbprint...she made a caterpillar with some of the other children who couldn't think of a bug to add.

When all the details were added...and it looked gorgeous...she wrote in calligraphy on the unpainted rim..."Thumbody at _______ School loves you very much!" You could do any seasonal picture and use their thumbs as the starting point for the details. Other sayings could be:
"Thank you for brightening our day!" and have all little sunshine faces.
"You made our garden of learning grow!"
"You're one in a million!" and do snowflakes all over.
"We're thankful we know you!" and make little turkey bodies out of the thumbs and the children add the feather and head details.

Another thing I have done is to tape the children talking about her/him while they drew pictures of a favorite lesson or moment with the student teacher. Too funny!

I also had a colleague take a class picture of us holding pieces of paper that spelled out a message...We'll miss you, Mr. So & So and added it to a really cool frame along with a gift card to a teaching supply store.

I also found a picture of a really great bird in flight that became the cover of a class book. The title was, "We gave you your wings, now fly!" Each child drew a bird doing a task and wrote what the new teacher should do when she has her own class. At the end of the book we had a picture of ourselves wearing bird headbands and "sitting" in a nest made of bulleting board paper crumpled around our feet.

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Student Teacher Shower
Posted by: Joy

I have had student teachers in the past and I am currently hosting a fantastic student now. Have you ever considered throwing a Student Teacher Shower? Here is what I have done.

Children are encouraged to bring in items such as markers, stickers, resource books, cool pens, bulletin board trimmers, notepads,rubber stamps, books, flash cards, manipulatives etc. With much assistance I help the children create a garden scene(flowers, ladybugs, bees, etc) with all of their little finger prints (dipped in bright acrillic paints sp.??) on a giant canvas bag. Once the paint is dry, all the children sign their names with fine line permanent marker pens.
Later, we fill the bag with all of the little gifts that have been individually wrapped.

On the last day of the student teacher's placement I present the gift from the whole class so that all students would feel as if they contributed even if they did not send in anything. It has been a great present. My student teachers have loved this personal yet meaningful gift.

We celebrate with punch and cookies too.

P.s. Don't forget to add a few gifts yourself along with a memory book written by your students such as ... Why Ms. Brown would be a great teacher. They can draw a picture and you can write their thoughts.

Let me know what you think!! Good Luck!!

Student Teacher gift
Posted by: ILTChr

I, too, had a fantastic Student Teacher this year. I wanted to do something special for her. Here's what we came up with....

1. The kids made a book for her entitled, "You're a GREAT teacher because....." Each student did a page, they finished the sentence and illustrated it. It was so cute, and made her cry!

2. I gave her a really nice apple keychain. I wrote a nice little note in the box that this was for the key to her own classroom which I knew she'd have real soon. She loved this. It showed my confidence in her abilities.

3. I gave her a nice bracelet....not real fancy or expensive. Just wanted something to remember me by! She loved it and wears it everytime I see her!

4. We had a "teacher shower" for her. The students all brought in a small teacher necessity (pens, pack of post-its, stickers, pointers for the board, etc.). I put them all in a nice basket. We enjoyed cake and our last day together. It was really fun!

I truly miss this gal. My kids do, too! She's going to make a fabulous teacher!

Hope this helps you!

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Student Teacher gift
Posted by: Melisa77

I gave my student teacher Harry Wong's First Days of School Book at the start of her placement with me, as it was the start of our school year.

At the end of her placement, I had a small tote bag with her name embroidered on it and as well as a teacher acrosstic poem. I asked parents for donations of teacher/school supplies and we filled the bag and a big teacher basket for her! I then purchased a gift card to Barnes & Noble and a local teacher store.

I made a book from my kids---took each of their pictures and created a computer template for them to place their picture and write my student teacher a letter. I then printed the pages on the color printer and had the book bound for her.

We had a surprise teacher shower on her last day with us where the kids presented her gifts. She loved everything...and the kids felt great that they were able to do something special for her!

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