Established in 1864 as Maine’s first teachers’ college, the University of Maine at Farmington boasts one of the premier teacher education programs in New England. UMF is nationally recognized for preparing caring, confident and collaborative teachers, coaches and administrators.
UMF Teacher Preparation At A Glance
When it comes to hands on learning, there are multiple resources that we have here. We have the Practicum Program, and that is typically for sophomores here at the university. And that is a three week program that alternates back and forth between three weeks in the classroom with your mentor teacher, and three weeks you're on campus learning how to build lesson plans and unit plans. And through that program, you're able to just foster those professional networks outside of the university so you're more prepared when you graduate.
The student teaching is a program after practicum, which you do your final year at UMF. And that is when you are in the field at the schools with your mentor teacher, learning right under them. And you're putting into motion those unit plans, those lesson plans, and everything that you've learned in your education courses, all in the field.
From that, I would say that the experiences that you gain are making those one on one connections with the students, because you'll be there every day and you'll get to know them as learners. And you also just learn about different strategies and what works and what doesn't work in the classroom.
My practicum experience allowed me to learn early on what age group and demographics I really like to work with. It gave me a true snapshot of the kind of teacher I want to be and in what setting. You're able to collaborate not only with your professors but with your mentor, to really get the experience to make it your own.
The education program at UMF prides itself on being able to send effective educators out in the community to make a difference in Maine for students and schools.