Jennifer Backes, from South Milwaukee, is majoring in Music Education with an emphasis on Instrumental and General Education. Her inspiration to become a teacher comes from long line of educators and a desire to spread her passion of music to others Her 18-week placement is broken down by the first 9-weeks at Rosenow Elementary in Fond du Lac, and the second at Merrill and Webster-Stanley Middle Schools in Oshkosh.
Wow. It is hard to believe that I have completed my first placement of student teaching. It seems like yesterday when I sang my song of introduction to all of my kids back in January! Has nine weeks really come and gone? Yes it has.
My third through fifth graders had their Pirate concert and I couldn’t be more proud of them for how well it went! Every student had some sort of fun pirate outfit/costume on and it was the cutest sight to behold! My third graders were performing first so we were all on stage when the principal welcomed the audience. He then introduced me as the “amazing student teacher” and presented me with a beautiful bouquet of flowers! I was so touched and thankful for such a wonderful sentiment that I couldn’t stop smiling. And then I really couldn’t stop when I led my kids in their songs and they did an outstanding job! They remembered everything I had told and taught them and did even better than I could have imagined! I was so proud of each and every one of them that I couldn’t help but get a bit emotional when they came up to me afterwards to hug and thank me.
The fourth and fifth graders performed their Pirates Musical next and they too did an amazing job! They all had their lines memorized and I only needed to prompt one student. There was even a part where a few kids got to run around in the audience which everybody loved! But all of the songs and speaking parts were so good and many people complimented us on such a fantastic concert!
Words cannot even begin to explain what an incredible journey it has been. My cooperating teacher was easily the best elementary music teacher I have ever observed! She was so organized and extremely helpful throughout my whole time of being there. Definitely an excellent inspiration and someone I will certainly be remaining in touch with. She and I are practically the same person and we would even joke around and say that we were twins separated from birth. Everything from our personality, to our organization, and to our styles of teaching were so similar that even the kids would laugh!
Not only will I miss her but I will miss every single one of my kids as well. We all bonded really well and I was basically a crying mess on my last day as I kept getting tackled by kids hugging me with teary eyes. I am so thankful for this experience and for being able to not only touch many students’ lives but to have them touch mine as well. One successful placement is complete and now my nerves are back again as I prepare for my next placement with middle school orchestra!