- It is so refreshing to have the chance to reflect about the WHY of what we do in music class!
I truly enjoy talking “shop”. Getting the chance to talk about what wonderful things go on in music was the reason why I started blogging. Having to slow down long enough to explain something is a REALLY good way to prune away extra stuff that is unnecessary and get to the heart of every instructional decision. My student teacher asks good questions and in order to make sure that she is well equipped, I’ve got to give her really good answers…. I like the challenge because it makes me think and as a result, I’ve learned a lot!
2. There are so many things that she can do better than me.
Let’s face it…. It’s been 17 years since my last piano class and 18 years since my last theory class. While I’ve continued to grow and learn and have improved in many ways, after all that time in Kinder-5th grade there are some things I’ve simply forgotten. It’s true that we loose what we don’t use! It’s fantastic to have a chance to talk “music speak” with someone who actually remembers what a Neapolitan chord is……
3. Another pair of hands and an extra voice is super nice.
When I am teaching, she is an intuitive helper who is ready to step in and lend a hand, or reteach a learner in need of additional support. Now that she is at the point in her student teaching when our roles are switched and she is the lead teacher, I can spend my time observing her progress, supporting her as needed and working on a few of the thousand administrative tasks I seem to have going on in my class at any given moment.
This experience has left me with 2 thoughts.
- If you’ve been teaching music awhile, consider accepting a student teacher. There is work involved and in order for your student teacher to gain the most benefit from time in your classroom, you have to be willing to spend extra time in conversation and collaboration, but I gotta say that it is totally worth it.
- If you were blessed with a great student teaching experience, then it’s time to pay it forward. If your student teaching experience was less than what you’d hoped for, then hosting a student teacher might just be the opportunity you’ve been looking for to redeem the experience.