Arcadia students experience firsthand the challenges and triumphs of working in real classrooms

Stephanie Fell '14“This experience shaped me as a teacher. I know that this knowledge will be transferred to each of my lessons during student teaching and in my future classroom.”
— Stephanie Fell ’14, Early Elementary/Special Education, Dual Certification Program

Many aspects of Arcadia’s program are unique. My fieldwork began in my freshman year and has continued to be integrated into my courses every semester. I’ve had fieldwork in most of the area schools, in numerous grades and class sizes. Arcadia also offers an extensive Pre-Student Teaching experience in which I was part of the classroom of my host teacher who will become my mentor during student teaching. This course made me more confident in front of a classroom and gave me knowledge about crafting lesson plans; I also got to know the “feel” of an entire school day and to collaborate with an experienced teacher. Arcadia has multiple methods courses in which I learned about teaching each elementary subject. I feel that Arcadia’s education program goes beyond what other schools offer. Arcadia students experience firsthand the challenges and triumphs of learning to teach real students while learning from experienced professors and mentors.

My experience in my writing methods course was an example of the power of this firsthand knowledge. The course was integrated with an after-school writing workshop created by Arcadia students at Elkins Park Elementary School. Each week, I spent an hour with eight fifth-graders, working on writing. This was an incredible learning experience because it was the first time I was able to create an entire educational unit, which enabled me to evaluate my own teaching strategies. I was able to challenge the students to aim higher in their writing goals and see them become more confident and even assist their peers! This experience shaped me as a teacher because I was able to see how persistence, creativity, and having a sense of students’ interests can motivate students. I know that this knowledge will be transferred to each of my lessons during student teaching and in my future classroom.

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