Early Childhood School Using Technology Upgrades to Continue Student-Teacher Hosting
St. Margaret’s technology enhancements put in place to support the Campus Flex Model continuous learning plan has allowed the Early Childhood School to continue a longtime student-teaching partnership with Saddleback College, which strengthens early childhood teacher training education in the local community.
Early Childhood School teachers Hope Petrozzi, Lore Fredette and Tammy Pipitone are virtually hosting student teachers in their classrooms this fall. The college students are connecting via videoconference and observing, assisting in instruction and working behind the scenes with St. Margaret’s expert faculty to design lesson plans and provocations and reflect on them as part of their degree requirements.
Mrs. Petrozzi and Mrs. Fredette are both certified California Early Childhood mentors and have worked closely with Saddelback over the years. The Early Childhood School’s partnership with Saddleback’s child development and education program dates back more than 30 years.
“One aspect of the ‘field study’ is the Saddleback students working with their own professors to create lessons and provocations that are then used here at St. Margaret’s. That includes activities for the children and intentional questions we ask the children during the activity,” said Mrs. Petrozzi, who oversees the partnership with Saddleback. “Afterward, we will meet with the student teachers to reflect on their lesson and how the children responded to it.
“Although this won’t be the practicum as usual, we feel our rich environment and expertise in the field along with our virtual learning experience will offer the student teachers a unique experience in observing, learning, listening and connecting with our students and mentor educator.”
St. Margaret’s Early Childhood School has adjusted for in-person play-based learning during the pandemic, included classrooms with smaller student cohorts, consistent teachers throughout the day and staggered schedules for time in the Outdoor Classroom, Atelier, Demonstration Lab and Garden.