Graceland student interns will be under the direct mentorship of master teachers beginning their senior year. Interns attend all pre-school in-service meetings with their elementary school faculty in August. Throughout the first semester, interns are on site at their assigned school on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Mondays and Wednesdays are devoted to attending night classes on the Graceland campus with your regular cohort. Interns participate in lessons during the first semester, making the transition into full-time teaching seamless and more beneficial to students and candidates. During January, interns complete a reading or special education practicum.
University faculty provide mentor support workshop and monthly luncheons, with the goal of developing competent and confident mentors who are scholars and leaders in the profession. The PDS model supports the most effective strategies to assure teacher quality, retention, and student success in learning.
The student teaching component spans from February through May for a total of 70 consecutive days/14 weeks. PDS interns are mentored and advised by their assigned master teacher. Additionally, university faculty provide guidance in translating theory into practice as interns participate in the Professional Seminar on Graceland's campus. All assessments and evaluations are done in accordance with University policies for student teaching during this professional semester.