Student teaching is a lifestyle change

Vanessa Howe

Vanessa Howe’s Spanish teacher, who shared her passion for Spanish and education to her class, inspired Vanessa to become a teacher.  Howe, a Secondary Education Spanish major, from Pardeeville, Wi, will be student teaching Spanish at Oshkosh West High School for nine weeks and then moving to Shattuck Middle School in Neenah  for another nine weeks.

Howe is excited to have her own classroom to relay her passion for the language and education with her students, and strives to be as great an educator as her own Spanish teacher. Follow along, as she shares her experience throughout the semester.

The last six weeks student teaching has consumed my life. : )   There is not a day that goes by that I do not do something for my student teaching, including weekends and nights.  I feel comfortable in my classroom now and I have taken over teaching every hour of our schedule. I arrive at school around 7 a.m. each day, about forty minutes before the school day begins in order to make copies, grade papers and prep for the day.  When the semester began I found it difficult to wake up before 6 a.m. and even harder to make it to school before we were required to at 7:25 a.m.  My cooperating teacher supported me and reminded me that student teaching is a lifestyle change. She predicted as the semester went on it would be easier to wake up early in order to prepare for the day.  As I became more involved in her classroom, it did become easier to make sure I was at school early so I was organized for the day.

Another thing I have thoroughly enjoyed about student teaching is the relationships I have made with my students. At the start of the semester I was very intimidated to be working with juniors and seniors in high school.  As our time together has passed, my students and I have become more comfortable with each other. They are more intelligent than I ever imagined they would be and I feel lucky to work with such sincere and intellectual students. Many of them are in the process of visiting and applying to colleges and it is exciting to hear them making their plans for their future.

I only have two and a half weeks left at Oshkosh West.  I have enjoyed my time at this school so far and have learned so much from my cooperating teacher, students and other foreign language teachers.  I will be sad to leave, but am excited to meet my middle school students.

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