To: All ATP Students
From: ATP Faculty
Before graduation from the Austin Teacher Program, students are strongly urged to observe the opening day of school at a school of their choice. Students should contact the principal to secure permission to be in the building on the opening day, perhaps request a particular teacher, and receive permission to be in the classroom on the first day of school. This permission should be secured during the spring semester before they want to observe in the fall. AC students should be in the host teacher’s classroom early on the first day of school and stay throughout the day, observing everything that occurs.
A typed reflection of the observation, attached to the host teacher’s signed acknowledgement of the day’s observation, should be sent to Nikki Christensen, Administrative Assistant of the Austin Teacher Program. It will be placed in the student’s permanent folder. The reflection on this observation should include: name of school, teacher, age of students, and content area for secondary schools. The observation should address these questions:
(1) What was the progression of events during the day?
(2) What instructional strategies were used?
(3) What procedures were put in place? Whose input was solicited?
(4) How were school wide procedures handled, i.e., bathroom breaks, hall passes, lunch time?
(5) What attempts were made to make students feel comfortable and invited to learn?
(6) What challenges do you anticipate when beginning the school year? How can you address them?
ATP faculty will use this information in graduate methods classes and the information will reflect positively as internships are considered. The information that ATP students share with each other about the opening day of school will provide important knowledge based on experience. This pooled information will suggest various ways to organize for the first day of school. ATP students can begin to address their own concerns about the opening of school and build a base of options from which to choose.