Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Observing Students and Nature

I'm back tonight from an overnight stay in New Town, ND. Yep, another field experience in their public schools for our students majoring in education. We spend two days in the elementary school, middle school, and high school and stay overnight at Four Bears Casino and Lodge just outside of town. Our university students serve as aides to the teachers, helping out however possible, interacting with students, observing instructional techniques, and getting a feel for another community, its school system, and its student body.

It's a good opportunity for me to get to know the university students better, too, since we spend time together on the bus traveling to and fro New Town, in the schools each day, and of course at the lodge at night. I like this group of students and look forward to working with them in future courses, too. They're just starting their education course work, but already they have keen insights into what to do and what not to do as teachers--and why to do or not do it.

Our rooms last night were on the third floor of the lodge, and I had a south-facing window looking out over the rising Missouri River, covered in patches of snow-dusted, melting ice. The hills above the river banks rise up toward the vast blue sky, and as evening falls, the line blurs between the hilltops and the sky; but the lights from the casino and the bridge spanning Lake Sakakawea cast a glow on the water and make it look like the river is the only thing to see outdoors. It's quite beautiful.

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