Education students are having to adopt new teaching methods due to COVID-19 restricting access into schools for field placements.
When looking at the education department and their curriculum, the core curriculum has stayed the same.
However, the way the curriculum is executed is completely different this year. The lessons are built around students that can not be in person, another form of remote learning.
“For the undergraduates, we are using videos so that they may have the experience of observing in classrooms,” Dr. Dana Mayhall, an education professor, said.
Since the lessons are not able to be taught in classrooms, students are required to learn through remote and virtual learning, using videos from the internet.
“Last year my classes were in elementary school classrooms almost every day, it was considered field placement,” said Emilee Gant, a secondary education major from Allen.
Field placement courses are no longer available with COVID-19 because students can not enter public school settings. These classes are considered non-essential. Due to COVID-19, only clinical teachers are allowed to be in the public school setting since this is their student teaching experience.
Every education degree requires student teaching, which takes place in the last semester of the student’s degree plan. This year, these classes are both online and face-to-face. Student teaching means working with Abilene ISD to present lessons and assist a specific teacher throughout the semester.
“Student teaching is essential and required,” Gant said. “Each teacher must have 70 days of teaching before being able to become a certified educator.”
In the end, students are still able to have student teaching and field experience this semester. It just has a different look than before.