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Jihad Fahs

Final Summary of Student Teaching


Student teaching has been my most important experience in learning how to be a
complete and effective educator. I have learned a lot and found that I have many strengths as a
teacher and many things that I have to work on. Under the instruction of my mentor teacher and
my Wayne State field instructor, I have identified many of my weaknesses and built upon many
of my strengths. Primarily, after my first weeks in the field, I learned that I have a problem with
the demeanor in which I act in front of the students. My personality is a calm and informal one,
but this is not conducive to teaching in a professional environment. A teacher must create a wall
of professional between the students and the authority figure that shows the students the teacher
is emotionally available, but still leaves room for the students to differentiate between the teacher
and a friend.
After my first observation, the field instructor addressed this problem with me and I have
been working hard to rectify it without alienating the students. I increased my professional
demeanor and changed my classroom vocabulary in order to reflect this change, and this change
has surfaced in my teaching. After my second observation, it was apparent to my field instructor
that I corrected these changes. Furthermore, a lot of my questions did not engage critical thinking
as well as I or my field instructor would have liked. After addressing this issue and seeking
advice from my field instructor and mentor teacher, I was able to correct this problem and
change it entirely for my next observation.
During my tenure as a student teacher, I felt myself grow as a reflective and innovative
teacher. First of all, in terms of reflection, I realized that I was a potentially good teacher, and
that I had a lot of work to do. At the end of every school day, I engaged in conversation with my
mentor teacher about the day and my experiences. In turn, she gave me advice about a number of
things I should employ in the classroom in order to change my teaching for the better. As an

innovative teacher, I learned that there are endless resources around me, particularly teachers
who engage different teaching styles and different techniques. There are countless times where
Ive went to numerous teachers and asked for advice on how to teach certain lessons.
There was also a problem with cheating that I caught in one of the classes I was coteaching (an advanced placement English course). In this situation, the students were sent down
to the SRC where they were told to write an action plan in order to be let back into the
classroom. This was done while I asked the advice of my mentor teacher. At the end, the student
came back to the class with the action plan, where I, my mentor teacher, and the student had a
meeting discussing reentry to the classroom. This is just one of the situations in which Ive had
to deal with problems in the classroom.
The student body at my school is very diverse, which a lot of students coming from
different backgrounds, areas, and cultures. Getting these students to interact and work together in
order to break down societal barriers is one of my goals as a teacher. This is done by engaging
the students in group work where they build relationships and see each other for people, instead
of simply classmates who look or act differently. In total, this experience has led to an increase in
my abilities as a teacher and has also reinforced the ideal of being a reflective and innovative
teacher who is committed to diversity.