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Teacher Education

It Takes a Village

Oakland University

Ashelin Currie, Doctoral Candidate, Department of Reading and Language Arts, Oakland University; Lisa Machesky, Executive Director, Baldwin Center; Lauren Fuller, Youth Director

Oakland University professors work closely with pre-service teachers to engage, instruct, and coach as they participate in a community service practicum at the Baldwin Center. Pre-service teachers learn how to administer reading assessments and apply their new skills by gathering assessment data from children who attend the afterschool program. Pre-service teachers utilize the assessment data to enhance students' literacy development by providing culturally relevant appropriate reading instruction. University professors impact pre-service teachers' knowledge of literacy instruction that connects with students' home culture, which in turns impact students' literacy acquisition, and in turn strengthens the community.

Contact: Ashelin Currie, arcurrie@oakland.edu, (704) 467-2389 (cell); Lisa Machesky, lmachesky@baldwincenter.org, (248) 332-6101 (office)

Literacy Experiences for All

Western Michigan University

Deanna Roland, Director, McGinnis Reading Center and Clinic, Western Michigan University

This presentation addresses the importance of meaningful opportunities through which teacher education candidates can gain essential pre-professional experiences with children, families and literacy. These experiences involve collaborative efforts with community groups that include nonprofit organizations, school districts, faith-based organizations, and other educational and youth-centered programs. Since literacy is a critical component of lifelong learning, highlighting early through adulthood literacy experiences supports the rationale for teacher education candidates to develop a solid understanding of the significance of strong literacy skill development. The powerful impact that effective application of literacy knowledge has on the community is emphasized.

Contact: Deanna Roland, deanna.c.roland@wmich.edu, (269) 387-1721

Great Lakes Bay Education Collaborative

Saginaw Valley State University

Carolyn Wierda, Associate Dean, College of Education, Saginaw Valley State University

Saginaw Valley State University has acted as a facilitator in the Great Lakes Bay Region Alliance with the three current Intermediate School Districts. The Collaborative has developed a regionally based strategic plan for the three ISDs and has unified the curriculum and instructional services into one office with one director. The program has developed four leadership conferences and has been awarded grant funding from a local foundation.

Contact: Carolyn Wierda, ccwierda@svsu.edu

Weekend Science

Central Michigan University

Dale-Elizabeth Pehrsson, Dean and Professor, College of Education and Human Services, Central Michigan University

Children in Grades 3-6 participate in Saturday Science Experiences in our new technologically enhanced college building on Central Michigan University's Mount Pleasant campus. These dynamic and popular experiences engage local families in science and technology and help the learners invest as families in learning for life. Dr. Kevin Cunningham, assistant professor of science education, and his pedagogical team facilitate this learning endeavor. Dr. Cunningham's Science Methods students have major responsibility for developing and presenting exciting and learning-rich experiences for up to 20 children in each session. We introduce children and families to basic concepts in science by using developmentally appropriate and hands-on activities. Our Central Michigan University elementary education students benefit by participating in planning, teaching, and assessing their work with children and families. Using a mentorship approach, our advanced students act as coaches for less experienced students.

Contact: Kevin Cunningham, cunni1kd@cmich.edu, (989) 774-3386

Educational Leadership and Teaching Excellence in Michigan's Diverse Communities

University of Michigan–Flint

Robert Barnett, Interim Dean, School of Education and Human Services, University of Michigan–Flint

In collaboration with local school teachers and administrators, University of Michigan–Flint has developed a unique secondary education program to prepare future teachers for teaching excellence in diverse communities. Michigan high schools need teachers who excel as leaders in their classrooms, meaningfully connect with students, and motivate students to be educationally successful in high school and beyond. University of Michigan–Flint is committed to developing teacher candidates who are capable of working competently in diverse settings and with diverse populations across the state. Cornerstones of the new University of Michigan–Flint secondary education program include early and progressive field experiences and coursework that models a place-based education teaching approach.

Contact: Robert Barnett rbarnett@umflint.edu, (810) 766-6878