Powerful teaching results from the interplay of in-depth knowledge of, inquiry into, and reflection upon: (a) children and child development, (b) teaching and learning processes in general and in specific content areas, and (c) the children themselves and the contexts of their lives at home and at school. The Elementary Education Program is designed to support the development of a strong knowledge base across all of these areas. The mission of the Elementary Education Program Faculty and Staff is to:
- Identify and recruit talented and knowledgeable elementary teacher candidates, especially from diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds.
- Engage teacher candidates in the examination of a variety of instructional approaches based on sound theoretical and research-based underpinnings.
- Provide a variety of field experiences and other simulations that allow students to develop and practice teaching skills, particularly focusing on practices that support learning for diverse elementary students.
- Utilize modeling of specific strategies, approaches, and/or methods to facilitate the development of candidate abilities to successfully apply strategies in practice.
- Provide teacher candidates with experiences that are active, interactive, and/or collaborative. In addition, there are a variety of opportunities to reflect upon, respond to, synthesize, and apply information.
- Involve teacher candidates in ongoing inquiry about children, teaching, and learning. Inquiry experiences are particularly focused on the development of teachers who possess the knowledge and courage to examine the complexities of classroom life and make sound choices that will support children's development and learning.