The Value of Experiencing the First Days of School for Preservice Teachers
Field Experiences; Beginning of the Year Preparation; Reflective Practices
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AbstractAbstract: Quality teacher education programs recognize the importance of field experiences in preparing preservice teachers for the beginning of a new school year. Some teacher education programs find it challenging to implement this field experience since the starting dates for the K-12 school year and the university classes often differ. School of Education faculty at The University of Mississippi took on this challenge in the spring of 2006 and report very encouraging results. The information provided in this article explains the steps involved in implementing the plan. Results from narratives completed by the participants provided specific information as to the types of duties the participants were engaged in during the field experience. In fall 2007, follow-up surveys were completed by first year teachers that participated in the field experience. Their responses provided helpful information that will be used to strengthen the first days of school field experience for future preservice teachers.