Making It Work as a Mother of Four

Making It Work as a Mother of Four  Advice from Demeshia, Class of 2016, California “I was looking for a career change. I liked the idea of being paired with a mentor to get on-the-job training and receiving both my Master’s and teaching credential in an accelerated time frame. “I knew the stipend was not enough to cover my cost of living: I have four daughters and my two youngest reside with me. It all felt very uncertain, so I began researching avenues that could assist me financially. “At the time, I had a full-time position making approximately $55,000 per year. While I was still working, I paid down as many household bills as I could and put away a small amount of money for any future incidentals. “I relied on financial aid, scholarships and student loans to pay my tuition costs. I applied for the grad PLUS loan, which is determined by your credit, and took out the full amount offered. To stretch my loan money as far as I could, I applied for CalFresh which covered my food costs and participated in the free and reduced lunch program at my children’s school. I contacted my utility companies and applied to their low-income energy assistance programs. I deferred my undergrad loans too. “It wasn’t always easy. At one point, I had to choose between paying for my utility bill or a CSET exam. I paid my utility bill, then called my mother crying. I had invested so much time and energy into the program and didn’t want to be put out for not having the ability to pay for testing. But the following week, I learned Alder offers financial assistance for exam registration fees. I applied and received an additional amount on my stipend which helped pay for my testing. “My advice, besides applying for financial aid, is to be open with your family and friends so they’re aware of your situation. My family, especially my mother, and friends were very supportive during the program. Also, utilize your cohort for carpooling to help cut down transportation costs. “The sacrifices were worth the reward. I learned so much about my views on education and have pushed myself out of my comfort zone. And my daughters are very proud of me.” Resources: Direct PLUS Loans (U.S. Department of Education) Scholarships (Alder Graduate School of Education) CalFresh (California Department of Social Services) Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Tennessee Department of Human Services) California Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (California Department of Community Services & Development) Tennessee Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (Tennessee Housing Development Agency) National School Lunch Program (U.S. Department of Agriculture) Undergraduate Loan Deferment (U.S. Department of Education)

Our Impact Video

Our Impact We are proud of the impact the Alder Teacher Residency has on schools and students. Watch the video below to learn more:

Mentor and Resident Experience Video

Mentor and Resident Experience At Alder Graduate School of Education, the resident and mentor partnership is a core component of the program experience. Watch the video below to learn more:  

A Year in the Life of a Teacher Resident at Alder GSE

A Year in the Life of a Teacher Resident at Alder GSE Residents in the Teacher Residency program begin their year in June and are immersed in the entire TK-12 school year at their residency site. During this intensive year of preparation, residents earn their Master’s degree and Teaching Credential. Residents graduate from Alder with the knowledge, skills, and habits of mind to be highly effective teachers from the first day in their own classrooms.  Read on to see what a year in the life of a resident from Cohort 2020–2021 looks like. Spotlight on the First Summer Term (Mid June to Late July) The Teacher Residency kicks off in June with program orientation and the start of graduate coursework. Graduate Coursework: Residents come together for regional coursework. During this time, residents learn about the upcoming year and take their first full-day graduate school courses toward their Master’s degree. Many residents also use the summer to complete state requirements, such as content tests. School Site Connection: Residents will participate in their school site retreats and professional development during the summer. Here, they meet their new school site teammates and learn about logistics and expectations at their school. Residents collaborate with their Mentor Teachers and begin to participate in all facets of the launch of the school year.   Spotlight on the Fall (August to December) Graduate Coursework: All residents are engaged in ongoing intensive online courses, which are supplemented by in-person regional coursework (regional coursework is held one day every three weeks). In a typical year, these regional courses are held in person with other cohorts in the region. Teaching: On the first day of school, residents are introduced by their mentors as co-teachers to their students. Residents gradually take on increasing amounts of responsibility in the classroom during the fall. Residents also complete a three- to five-day takeover in November. During this takeover, residents are responsible for all dimensions of teaching and learning in their residency classroom while their Mentor Teacher offers coaching and support. Partner Directors also observe and coach residents as they engage in instruction. Residents work with their school administrators and Mentor Teachers to provide quality instruction, whether that is in-person or distance learning. Weekly Seminar: Residents attend a full-day seminar course with their regional cohort once a week starting in August. These seminars will extend across the year (August to May). Seminars include cohort team building, discussions about diversity, equity, and inclusion in the TK-12 classroom; and opportunities for targeted teaching practice. This is a place for residents to build community with their cohort and Partner Director and is an opportunity to connect their graduate coursework with what they are experiencing in their residency sites. Spotlight on the Spring (January to May) Graduate Coursework: All residents continue to engage in ongoing intensive online courses and in-person regional coursework (regional coursework is held one day every three weeks). In a typical year, these regional courses are held in person with other cohorts in the region. Courses in the spring include the Action Research course, in which residents engage in a graduate-level research project they design and execute in their placement classrooms. Teaching: Residents continue to engage in co-teaching with their mentor, evolving their responsibilities as the school year moves toward its end. Residents have owned all aspects of classroom instruction by this point, so the focus becomes refining and improving practice in anticipation of residents leading their own classrooms in the upcoming fall. This includes residents engaging in lead teaching and takeovers throughout the spring.  Weekly Seminar: In the spring, seminars take a deeper dive into instruction. The focus is rigorous, individualized, purposeful teaching and learning. Seminars focus on questioning, checking for understanding, and providing students with targeted feedback, continuously tying field experiences to coursework. As the year comes to a close, residents also begin to take a look back and a look forward, with seminars focusing on three milestones for residents: edTPA, job interviews, and the Master’s Oral Exam.  Spotlight on Completing the Residency Year (May to June) Completing the Residency Year: At the end of the residency year, residents finish their final graduate courses and wrap up their time at their school sites.  Graduation is typically celebrated early June, and the final day of the residency coincides with the last day of school at the residents’ school sites.