Okay, no. Joking. What I really want to do is teach teachers.
I don’t want to get a PhD, however. I’d totally suck at writing a dissertation (I could never get an A in college on any paper that was longer than 12 pages — I lost control of the form at that length), and to put it bluntly, I would not like to have professors of education as my colleagues. Nor would I enjoy working at a school of education — most of our schools of education are subpar, including the ones I went to.
So I’m not sure how I’m going to teach teachers. I ended up not loving the kind of mentor job I had last year — it was pretty tough, with lots of soul-sucking paperwork.
Last week, however, I had the experience of mentoring the way I want to do it. There is a Spanish-speaking assistant teacher who helps out in lots of the different preK classes with kids who speak Spanish. She works in my room, and has always been very complimentary. (She says her grandson is going to be in my class, come hell or high water, once he turns four.) She also works in the room of a teacher who is new to preK, and has been struggling all year with classroom management. She pushed all year for the struggling teacher to come to my room to see how I do things, and last week, it finally got set up.
It was great. Struggling Teacher (ST) was enthusiastic about the visit, had a notebook in her hand, and eagerly took notes and asked questions. She arrived before the kids did, so we could talk about the room and the way it is set up. (She was amazed at how well the set-up works, given that my classroom is so tiny.) She was there when I opened the door, and she saw how lovely and peaceful our arrival time routine is. As I went through our morning, I was able to give her little asides that explained why I was doing certain things. She was happy, and I had fun. I wonder how I could make that into a job……
be a cooperating teacher for student teachers. That’s basically what you do- lots of modeling of good teaching practices, reflection on how things went, allowing them to teach and giving feedback on how thing went. I’ve had quite a few student teachers- some came in with great skills, others needed more assistance. I enjoy it, but do find it tough to share a classroom sometimes!