The New Teacher Academy hit a few milestones on Tuesday, July 17, marking its fifth year and over 100 attendees – a record for the annual event.
Teacher Education faculty members Sarah McMahan and Rebecca Fredrickson have developed the program to provide additional mentorship and support to recent TWU graduates entering their first year or in their first three years. teaching. Applicants from iTeach Texas, an alternative certification program, are also invited, a result of the integrative collaboration with iTeach, TWU, North Central Texas College and the Denton Independent School District.
Lisa Huffman, Dean of the College of Professional Education, and Associate Deans Gina Anderson and Holly Hansen-Thomas welcomed participants. They were joined by Diann Huber, president and founder of iteachU.S., Who applauded the gathering of educators focused on helping students.
Huffman told attendees they were “in probably the most crucial years of your teaching career.” She shared the advice she received from K-12 students: be yourself. Encourage your students. What matters most is that you care about me.
True to tradition, the guest speaker was a young graduate who had just completed her first year of teaching. Daisy Lopez, a fourth-grade teacher at David and Lynda Olson Elementary School in Allen’s Independent School District, noted that she attended New Teacher Academy last year, “trying to impregnate herself as much as I could “. She encouraged new teachers to keep pace, take the time to recharge their batteries, and rely on other teachers for support. Most of all, she said, âGive yourself grace.
Lopez then joined a panel of other first-grade teachers to answer questions from participants. The full-day event also included a question-and-answer panel with administrators and breakout sessions on effective classroom management strategies, week one preparation, and working with special populations.
The closing session featured Ruth Johnson (Graduate School) and Randall Langston (Enrollment Management) encouraging attendees to consider pursuing graduate studies. To add incentives, they raffled two scholarships to attend graduate school at TWU.
In addition to McMahan and Fredrickson, the New Teacher Academy planning committee includes Anderson, Huber and Zach Rozell of iteachTEXAS, and teacher training teachers Karen Dunlap, Laura Trujillo-Jenks, Diane Myers and Amanda Hurlbut.
The event has flourished over the past five years, and while organizers are thrilled with the growth, limited space and limited resources present a challenge.
âThis is the first year that we have had to reduce the number of participants,â said McMahan. “We know that interest in the New Teacher Academy is high, so we are already planning ways to allocate more places and find additional resources for next year.”