Text Box: U.S.F. Teacher Credential Program: Single-Subject



As a master teacher, you share in the final stages of the teacher preparation process at the University of San Francisco.  It is through your competence, professionalism, and sensitivity that our students are introduced to the "real world' of teaching.  We recognize the vital role you play in forming the dispositions, enhancing the knowledge, and refining the skills within these pre-service teachers.  Thank you for sharing your classroom and your expertise.


Getting Ready for a Student Teacher

Before your student teacher arrives at the school, there are several things that can be done.  Arrange a place in the room for the student teacher to work and keep her/his supplies.  Begin assembling a packet of useful materials including curriculum guides, textbooks, seating chart, course outlines, school handbook, school calendar/schedule, your specific duty schedule (prep-periods, lunch, etc.), and a copy of your school SARC report.

               It is important that the student teacher is an active participant in her/his teaching experience.  She/he should be at school during the same times you are and should actively participate in all school meetings and events.  In addition, please set aside specific times each day when the two of you can sit down to talk together.  These discussions should include time for planning lessons, feedback on lesson presentation, and questions related to teaching practice. 


Getting Acquainted and the First Week of School

During the semester that the USF student teacher is in your class she/he should progress through a sequence of orientation, observation, participation and full teaching responsibility.  As master teacher, you provide the orientation describing the district guidelines and curriculum, touring the school building with the student, making introductions to school personnel, explaining classroom policies and procedures, and discussing the scope and sequence of the curriculum to be taught.  During the first week, the student teacher will become acquainted with your class by observing you as you plan and teach.  She/he can also begin to take on responsibilities during the school day including:

               • checking attendance

               • assisting with the collection, assessment and distribution of student work

               • assisting with lessons/learning activities

You are asked to assist the student in her/his observations and orientation into the teaching profession by providing information, through modeling and sharing of personal experiences/methods, of specific topics such as:

               • classroom management techniques

               • planning teaching-learning strategies

               • provisions for individual differences

               • adapting lessons for ESL students

               • student assessment


The Teaching Schedule

A general pattern for the student teaching placement begins with a period of observation for one or two weeks, the length depending on the student teacher’s familiarity with your classroom.  If the USF student has spent the previous semester (Student Teaching I) as an Observer/Participant in your classroom, she/he may be ready to begin assuming responsibility for planning and delivering lessons earlier in the semester. 

               By the third week the student may begin to take on primary responsibility for one class period per day.  The goal is for the student teacher to gradually assume full-time teaching responsibilities for two full preps, at different levels if possible, and to assist the master teacher or the school, during the equivalent of a daily third period, in whatever capacity will work for you.  The expectation is that you will continue to mentor and assist the student teacher throughout the placement.  This includes providing opportunities for the student to observe you model lessons, team teaching experiences, collaboration in planning and assessment of lessons, and your observation and constructive critique of lessons presented by the student teacher.


Planning and Preparation

The student teacher should keep a lesson plan book as well as lesson/activity planning notes, in a manner that is most useful for her/him, throughout the student teaching placement.  Formal lesson plans need only be written out for the University Supervisor during her/his observation visits. 

               Time should be set aside daily for planning meetings.  The student should work closely with you in planning the daily and weekly lessons.  Please allow time for you to review and make comments on her/his plans.  She/he will also need your guidance in developing long-range plans, based upon your experiences with the broader curriculum and grade level. 


On-Campus Seminars

During the student teaching experience the student teachers are concurrently registered in a seminar that meets every Monday evening.  In addition to providing time for reflection on their teaching experiences, the seminar will focus on topics such as classroom management, current issues in education, curriculum and instructions strategies for today's schools, and career search strategies.


Observation and Conferences with the Student Teacher

One of the most important aspects of student teaching is the benefit the student teacher receives from regular conferences with the master teacher  (Please note: these conferences are in addition to daily planning meetings and have a different focus).  The ideal conference is a cooperative effort.  Both the student teacher and the master teacher prepare for the conference; both come with ideas to improve instruction.  These conferences should occur weekly, since on-going, regular communication between master teacher and student teacher is essential to a successful student teaching placement.  The importance of this constant and close communication cannot be overemphasized. 


University Supervisor's Visits

The University Supervisor will visit your classroom a minimum of seven times during the semester-long student teaching placement, to observe and provide feedback to the student teacher.  These visits will be arranged in advance.  The student teacher will hold a pre-visit conference, usually over the telephone, with the Supervisor to provide information about the lesson to be observed.  During the visit the Supervisor will record observations on a form with copies going to the student teacher and to you.  The Supervisor will need to hold a post-observation conference, 10-15 minutes, with the student teacher following the observation.  While the Supervisor may speak briefly with you at each visit to share successes and concerns, please feel free to contact the Supervisor at any time during the course of the semester placement.  A more formal, three-way conference is needed following the second, fourth, sixth, and seventh observation.  The timing of these interim and final conferences will be coordinated with you and the student teacher by the Supervisor.


You are asked to provide a written assessment of the student teacher four times during the semester: three monthly reports and one final evaluation.  The form to be used is essentially the same for all four assessments.  Your student teacher will provide you with the forms and self-addressed envelopes to mail to the School of Education.  If it is more convenient, you can fax the assessments to (415) 422-5504, attn: Dr. Dillon.

               This form can also provide the basis for conferences with your student teacher through out the placement to assess development and to set goals.  Please feel free to share your assessment with your student teacher as a means of helping her/him grow in her/his teaching skills. 

               In addition to the University of San Francisco evaluation form, the student teacher will be asking you for a letter of recommendation.  This letter is an important part of the student's Professional Portfolio and job search documents. 


Questions and Concerns

               Please contact the Field Placement Director  for the Teacher Education Department at the University of San Francisco (Dr. Geoffrey R. Dillon, S.J. [ 415/422-5489] ) if you have any comments, questions, or concerns.  You will receive contact information from your student's University Supervisor and should feel free to communicate with the supervisor at any time. Again, thank you for sharing your classroom and your expertise!