Currently, I am to start my student teaching January 9th of next year. In order to have me prepared the past six weeks I have been invited to attend PLC with the Preschool teachers and the lead (mentor). One thing I have learned so far is having a classroom management is crucial and having a behavioral system in place is essential. This I have found from both the learning community and the mentor. I would say I learn far more from the learning community as they focus on what we are working on instead of what could happen or where will we be by next week. The professional learning community helps me focus on my direct needs. They have allowed me to observe them teach lessons and even help them by teaching one of their lessons so I can get in a routine. I feel the mentor is more like my observer and tells me everything I am doing wrong and how to fix it. She does not go over lesson plans or teaching styles with me one on one. For my first year, next Fall, I will rely on my community of teachers. They will be there to support me through the days not the mentor as she only attends once a week to give PD with, the lead teachers.
“A PLC is a group of teachers with a shared commitment to reflect on their teaching practice and to learn both individually and collectively about the teaching practices that are the most effective for improving student learning.” (How Professional Learning Communities Can Strengthen Teachers’ Professional Development | IREX, n.d.) It is my practice that the PLC is more controlled and helpful since they are doing the same lesson plans and can help me think outside the box. Maybe my mentor is not as involved as some are supposed to be and they want me to rely on the group. I know that so far it has been a great help with watching them and taking notes. I have been allowed firsthand knowledge which a lot of student teachers are not afforded.