Today a new student intern started in my classroom. Normally they begin before school year starts, but hey we are in education. We roll with what happens around us. I count myself lucky she is with me at all. I was originally assigned an intern before school even started but for unknown reasons it did not work out and the first one never showed up.
I love having student interns in my room. This is actually my third year having student intern(s) in my classroom. While some teachers do not like it or shy away from it for various reasons of their own I will take any that I can get.
So how does this work in my journey to find balance? Student interns typically can be more work, it can slow me down, and means more meetings and planning time. However, I like to look at the flip side of it. I get more adult support in the room. The kids get more adult support and intervention. It means I will be able to take the time to handle kinder kiddo conflict while she continues teaching. It means she will be able to do an extra intervention group at the same! I like to think of it as a win-win situation.
Lucky me too- I get to make an amazing impact on a new teacher and in a way all of his/her future students. I get to build a relationship with a newbie teacher who can bring all of their ideas to our classroom and I learn from them too. I am still in touch with my mentor teacher almost 20 years later and look up to her career in the early childhood field.
This article from Edutopia is great and talks about how every teacher needs a mentor. Did you know that most teacher who leave the profession in the first five years do so because they lack support. Mentors can do a lot to curb this stat.
So teachers (even non-teachers) out there- do you have yourself a good mentor?
Someone who will:
- Support you
- Challenge you in positive ways
- Celebrate your success
- Listen and Collaborate
- Be a Safe Space for You (most important!!)
If you do not have a person like this in your life- seek one out immediately! If there is not one at your place of work, seek one out locally. If there is no one- email me; I’ll be there for you (now imagine me singing the Friends theme)