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College of Education > C & I Field Experiences > Information for Mentors > Guidebooks > C I 495A > What Is Penn State's Teacher Education Program All About?

What Is Penn State's Teacher Education Program All About?

The framework for Penn State’s elementary teacher education program is built on a model of teaching as reflective inquiry. Teachers make decisions about life in classrooms to help students develop as active, knowledgeable citizens of a multicultural world. These decisions are based on teachers’ understandings of self and prior experiences; their students; human development and diversity; subject matter; educational theory; curricular design; instructional methods; federal, state and institutional regulations; and political, social and moral relationships among education, community and world affairs. Teachers develop their understandings continually through systematic intensive inquiry by posing questions, gathering data from educational literature and their classrooms, analyzing classroom products, participating in observations and discussions, probing the historical conditions that produced the present circumstances and taking action on this knowledge.

Critically reflecting on and taking action on one’s daily work is the hallmark of a professional engaged in self-improvement. As reflective inquirers, prospective teachers bring personal, social and theoretical knowledge to bear to promote curriculum change and school improvement. We encourage our prospective teachers to be inquirers into teaching and learning practices and developmental processes encountered in classrooms, especially during field experiences.

A Guidebook for Mentor Teachers of C I 495A Students
Letter to the Mentors ○ Contact Information ○ What Is Penn State's Teacher Education Program All About? ○ What Is This "DI Block" That My Student Talks About?  What Is CI 495A? ○ Sample Student Schedule ○ What Does My Student Have to Do for CI 495A? ○ What Do I Need to Know about Observing My Student? ○ What Do I Need to Know about Conferencing with My Student? ○ What Do I Need to Know about Evaluating My Student? ○ How Do I Contact Someone If I Have Questions?