University of Minnesota Project Report 2009
Induction & Mentoring
- In the first two years of PhysTEC at the U of M, we have had one first year teacher and one student teacher.
- Informal, periodic communication was maintained with both of these teachers but there was no formal mentoring occurring.
- Obtaining long-term funding for the PhysTEC program is essential to setting up an induction and mentoring program. This continues to be something we are trying to obtain.
- Looking ahead, it will be difficult for the TIR to teach the “Physics for Future Elementary Teachers” course, lead the seminar for the Learning Assistants, and build and maintain mentoring relationships.
- We are philosophically committed to continuing support of the teachers prepared in our program. However, our resources are currently stretched very thin, both in terms of funding and time. We are working with other departments to write grants to provide additional resources.
- Maintaining a connection between the U of M, the teachers, and their school districts raises the level of understanding of the role of each.
- The cost of mentoring early-career teachers will need to be partially borne by the districts in which these teachers work, not solely by the university program that prepared them.
- Beginning physics teachers will be supported to attend the 2009 Summer Meeting of AAPT. Two beginning teachers are taking advantage of this support.
- The PhysTEC TIRs serve as voices of practical experience for our preservice teachers.
- In future years, the Teacher Advisory Group (TAG) member teachers will also provide mentoring.