Childhood Education: A Pathway to Real World Experience
By: Carlin Hanley
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to stand up in front of a classroom full of students and teach every day? If so, Duxbury High School offers a class that might be perfect for you: Childhood Education. In this class, students go to Alden, where they intern with a teacher in a third, fourth, or fifth grade classroom.
The advisor of this class is Ms. Sterling. “Everyone could benefit from this class,” she said.. “We find that students who are interested in education, it is very beneficial for them. I’ve had students who take it and say ‘I didn’t think I wanted to be a teacher but after taking this, I’ve realized this is something that I really want to do.”
As an intern, students do a variety of activities with students. They may work with a group of students on a specific skill, they may create bulletin boards, or they may even grade papers. If they are not in an Alden Classroom, the class meets here at the high school to discuss specific tools that students can use, such as how to speak positively to children, how to build a lesson plan, and how to create community in the classroom. There are no prerequisites that a student must complete before taking this class.
Many students have benefitted from this class. Senior Michaella C. said, “I’ve always wanted to be a teacher, so I just wanted to take it to get the hands on experience to see what it’s really like and to see the sides of teaching that I didn’t realize were so important.”
The Alden teachers benefit from the student interns, and so do the students. “I know that my students really look up to the big kids, and are in awe of the big kids…” said, Ms. Nissi, a third grade teacher at Alden School. “The kids really respond well to the older students. It’s something new and different… a new face and voice and someone who they think is really cool… and they actually listen to the high schoolers. It’s a really great opportunity for interaction between the school.”
Duxbury High School is one of the few high schools in the area that offers a program like this one.