Tyler ISD juniors and seniors in Pam Jacobs’ Education classes at the Career and Technology Center (CTC) are experiencing the classroom in new way - as teachers, not just students. The students are currently participating in three-week rotations in Tyler ISD elementary schools where they assist teachers in classrooms.
The entire experience is designed to mimic real teachers in real teaching environments. Students spend the first part of the year learning the TEKS (Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills) required by the Texas Education Agency (TEA). The focus then shifts to researching best practices and methods for teaching the TEKS before ultimately creating their own set of lesson plans and activities to present to a classroom of students. The final phase is to spend time with small groups of students to help reinforce skills and strategies presented by the classroom teacher.
“We currently have 35 students who go to 10 elementary schools a year,” Ms. Jacobs said. “The variety of schools gives students the opportunity to learn about different student populations and demographics, learning environments, teaching styles and so forth. This is our last week at Andy Woods and Jones elementary schools. Our next rotation will be at Ramey and Caldwell elementary schools.”
Dakota Hill, a junior from Robert E. Lee High School, hopes to one day become a college professor while also making an impact in deaf education in honor of his father, mother and sister who are all deaf. For now, he is assisting the PE teacher during the remainder of his rotation at Andy Woods.
“The thing I like most about going to the elementary schools is that you get to see students from all levels and backgrounds,” Dakota said. “By being a teacher one day, I hope to show students that when odds are stacked against them, they can still succeed - just like my dad, mom and sister.”
Enrollment in Education I and II classes at the CTC next school year is expected to exceed 52 students.
Pictured: Robert E. Lee junior, Lezleigh Saucedo; Robert E. Lee junior, Dakota Hill