Explore the art of teaching by observing expert teachers at work. Classroom experiences are a vitally important part of your teacher education. There’s simply no better preparation for future teachers than observing how students react to different styles of instruction and how good teachers adjust in response.
At the School of Education, we work hard to put you in a classroom with experienced teachers as early as possible in your degree program. Depending on your major, you may be able to start observing real classrooms as early as your freshman year. Then, in your final year as an IU student, you’ll take on the ultimate challenge: full-time student teaching.
Early Field Experiences
In an early field experience, you’ll be teamed with a teacher at a school within a 60-mile radius of campus for three to ten hours a week. Consider it your introduction to the realities of teaching. You’ll begin by observing your partner teacher in action, then take on tasks that may include grading student homework, administering tests, leading small reading groups, or working one-on-one with individual students.
You’ll also get a better idea of the kind of teaching career you want. You’ll discover which age groups and content areas you prefer to teach. You’ll have the opportunity to see how the theories you learn in your course work actually affect the practice of teaching. Most importantly, you’ll pick up valuable strategies for classroom management, discover new ways to present challenging material, and start building your professional network.
If there’s a particular school or teacher with whom you’d like to work but who may not be one of our participating schools, have them contact us at email@example.com or call (812) 856-8502.
As a student teacher, you’ll work full-time under the supervision of a mentor teacher in an Indiana classroom. Students will go through three phases of student teaching:
- Phase 1: An observational period to become acquainted with the school community
- Phase 2: Full-time teaching mode (comprising approximately 75 percent of your placement schedule)
- Phase 3: Observation and reflection period
The School of Education coordinates and tracks all student teaching placements and will ensure you find a position for your chosen certification as an all-grade, early childhood, elementary, secondary, or special education teacher. We work with schools in every Indiana county, and many students are able to take positions at schools near the communities where they grew up.
Cultural Immersion Projects
You can get unique student teaching experience that combines classroom practice with community participation and cultural learning.
Choose from placement opportunities in one of 17 countries around the world; on Navajo reservations in Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah; and in the Chicago Public Schools.
It's a great opportunity to work with diverse student populations and broaden your worldview while fulfilling your student teaching requirements.