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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

March, 2015

Page address: http://ed.mnsu.edu/infobrief/2015-03/

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Updates from the Children’s HouseiStock

Jodi Malecha, Director of the Children’s House

This spring and summer we have big plans for our outdoor classroom. We are installing a new shed filled with amazing large blocks that are made to withstand our changing outdoor weather in our Messy Materials area. The shed has 62 large blocks and ramps as well as a large wheelbarrow. We are very excited for this addition. We will also be installing the stage and a 15 key Marimba that stands 30” tall in our Music and Movement area. Over spring break, the grounds crew trimmed up all of the trees on our playground. We were able to repurpose many of those branches into mini tree blocks to use in our indoor classrooms. We are having so much fun watching the transformation of our outdoor classroom. If you have time to come over and see it in action, remember that we are here all summer!

The search for a new Toddler teacher was successful. We welcomed Tiffany Bredeson to The Children’s House at the beginning of Spring Semester. She has already made great connections with our toddlers and parents.

We are conducting a new search to replace our retiring Infant teacher. Susan Schwieger has been at The Children’s House for 25 years and will retire on June 26, 2015. Susan has been helping our youngest people navigate their first months with love and respect. We will miss her as she begins the next exciting chapter in her life. We hope that she finds time to stop in to play her guitar and maybe rock some babies.

We are very happy to continue to support MSU students for their lab and observation hours. Since the beginning of fall semester we have served 140 lab students from 6 classes and 55 students fulfilling their volunteer hours for various scholarships, classes, and organizations. This semester we have also served as the lab for a research project in the Psychology Department.

News from the Office of Field and International ExperienceiStock

Dr. Elizabeth Finsness, Director of Office of Field and International Experience

International Student Teaching

The experience of student teaching in another country expands our teacher candidates’ experiences and offers the opportunity to broaden perspectives. This semester, twelve teacher candidates invested in their personal and professional growth and committed to student teach in another country for six weeks. Nine candidates were selected for our Queensland, Australia program, two candidates for San Jose, Costa Rica, and one for Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emerites. You may learn about their incredible experiences on Thursday, May 7. Candidates will present media presentations between 1:00 and 3:30 in CSU 201.

Mid-Semester Professional Seminar

Teacher candidates completing requirements for their initial teaching license met on March 25 to seek answers to their burning question from a panel of school administrators and to participate in speed interviews to hone their interview skills.

OFIE

Final Seminar

Candidates will return on May 8 for a final seminar and Pinning. One session for the day will be a World Café for candidates, faculty, and PDS partners. A Word Café is a great way to harvest a variety of viewpoints and information in short period of time. Consider joining us for this lively conversation – more information will follow.

Dates to remember:

May 7 1:00 – 3:30, CSU 201
International Student Teachers share their multi media reports

May 8
9:30 – 1l:00, location TBD
World Café

2:30 – 3:30, CSU Ballroom
Pinning

News from the Department of Elementary & Early ChildhoodiStock

Dr. Lori Piowlski, faculty member in Elementary & and Early Childhood

The College of Education received an inquiry from a Colorado school district seeking a partnership to help provide quality elementary teachers. In the letter it was stated that the inquiry was based upon EEC’s reputation for producing high quality candidates. EEC has also been asked to host delegates from two teacher education programs in Wisconsin and South Carolina.

EEC candidates are being recognized as extremely well prepared as we have redesigned our program to provide extensive scaffolding for the edTPA process. EEC candidates benefit from 600 plus hours of field experience prior to student teaching; which is several times more than what is required by the BOT. We take pride in recruiting and retaining effective supervisors for these field experiences.

EEC teacher candidates provide service to local school partner districts, as they serve as science fair judges, Kindergarten Round Up and Open House staff. A unique and effective service our candidates provide is iTutoring. iTutoring our candidates are matched with elementary students where they implement interventions using FaceTIme on iPads to interact with students that miles away.

As a result of our commitment to quality preparation, our student’s success rate in passing the edTPA is significantly above the national average with 100% of the fall 2014 EEC graduates passing the edTPA test. Similarly in our graduate program, 100% of those taking the MTLE for the Reading Teacher licensure have passed both sub-tests for the past two years. In addition we have our first semester of graduating students who will have earned a STEM certificate.

In addition to the positive results represented by these high stake tests, EEC is committed to adding value to our candidates’ preparation in areas that are not as easily measured but equally important. EEC has a demonstrated a commitment to cultural competence to utilize the Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI) as a measure of our success in producing culturally competent candidates. Over the past four years, using pre and posttests, have shown significant increases in our candidates’ cultural competence as measured by the IDI. We believe this is the result of modifying our course to include tasks and activities to increase our students’ ability to “widen their cultural lens”.

EEC faculty has earned a national presence through publications and presentations in the areas of edTPA, cultural competence, and iTuoring.

Development UpdatesiStock

Margaret Li, Director of Development, College of Education

College of Education receives $1 million anonymous gift:

The College of Education is pleased to announce the receipt of a $1 million anonymous gift. The gift, to be distributed over the next five years, will be used for scholarships as well as programs for the College of Education. The gift is made in honor of the donor’s father and wife, both of whom graduated from MSU Mankato and were lifelong teachers.

College of Education hosting donor reception:

Anton Treuer

College of Education is hosting a donor reception featuring keynote speaker Dr. Anton Treuer. The event will take place at the Edina office on April 23, 2015, with dinner at 5:15 p.m. and the keynote from 6 – 7:30 p.m. Dr. Treuer is widely recognized as one of the most prolific scholars of Ojibwe, and is at the forefront of a movement to textualize this formerly oral language in hopes of preserving and re-vitalizing it. Dr. Treuer has also worked extensively with the Ojibwe language immersion efforts underway in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Ontario. He is currently Professor of Ojibwe at Bemidji State University.

College of Education appoints new Director of Development:

Margaret Li has joined College of Education in January 2015 as its Director of Development. Originally from Hong Kong, Margaret moved with her family to Minnesota in 1988. Margaret has a B.A. from the University of Hong Kong and an M.B.A. from Southern Illinois University. Margaret has spent the majority of her career in the field of international development, with organizations like UNICEF and CARE. Margaret will be working with College of Education alumni and donors to generate much needed funds for the College.