Directions & Resources for UNF Mentor Teachers
Thank you for your willingness to serve as a mentor teacher!
This is the temporary site that we (teacher education faculty) in the College of Education and Human Services are using to host information for our mentor teachers while we build out a permanent site on the UNF server. This teacher mentor page is divided into three primary sections: 1) expectations and suggestions for mentoring interns, 2) models of and expectations for co-teaching, and 3) intern lesson planning. We will be adding means of evaluating interns in the near future.
Note: This website is not affiliated with the University of North Florida. The content and views described herein are those of the site creator John W. White, PhD, a faculty member at UNF.
Mentor Teacher Forms and Reporting
Mentor teachers have specific reporting requirements. These include:
approving the intern's hours logs (i.e., the type and amount of teaching-related activity conducted throughout the semester);
administering a mid-term and final evaluation of the intern*;
administering the CAST evaluation on the interns.
* The evaluation measure will be uploaded here and on Via shortly.
The College of Education and Human Services expects that interns and mentor teachers will utilize a co-teaching model throughout the internship experience.
The use of co-teaching strategies is different from traditional models of student teaching. Historically, teacher candidates have been encouraged to take over for and/or to replace the mentor teacher and take sole control of the classroom mid-way through their internship (a teacher education form of "gradual release"). Unfortunately, this experience often results in circumstances that are not the best for classroom students or the intern. In co-teaching models, the mentor teacher remains in the classroom and teaches with the teacher candidate through the entirety of internship. Co-Teaching will, when done well, benefit classroom students, the intern, and the mentor teacher in ways that gradual release cannot.
Below you will find YouTube videos that discuss the benefits of co-teaching as well as six (6) co-teaching strategies. The strategies videos were created by educators at California State University, Chico.
Teaching Methods for Inspiring Students of the Future
One Teach, One Observe Strategy
One Teach, One Assist Strategy
Parallel Teaching Strategy
Station Teaching Strategy
Differentiated Teaching Strategy
Team Teaching Strategy
The College of Education and Human Services expects interns to prepare comprehensive lesson plans for each lesson/activity that they will be leading or for lessons in which they play an active part.
A wealth of educational research highlights that creating detailed lesson plans is extremely important both for the development of the intern and for the PreK-12th grade students she/he will be teaching. The novice teacher's creation of lesson plans helps solidify such ideas as scope and sequence, utilizing students' prior knowledge, creating buy-in with culturally-relevant pedagogies, finding appropriate resources, adequately differentiating for different needs and contexts, preparing for the unexpected, negotiating transitions, timing the lesson(s), and myriad other skills and talents that more experienced teachers have internalized through repetition and trial and error.
Thus, our expectation is that the intern will prepare lesson plans regardless of the normal practice of the mentor teacher, district requirements, or school culture. Interns may (and ideally should) create many of their lesson plans in cooperation with their mentor teacher per the co-teaching model described above. Lesson plan expectations are outlined in the slides below (a longer version of which the interns have already examined). The format for lesson plans should be those used by the school/district or, absent such a template, the lesson plan template used within the intern's program of study.
Please direct any questions you might have about the teacher-mentor role or expectations for interns to your intern's University Supervisor or to Dr. Lauren Gibbs at the address below:
Building 57, Room 1075