Taking the career path of a teacher is definitely not every student’s cup of tea. Some students may experience post-traumatic stress with even the thought of it. Nonetheless, others have been able to find their true calling through teaching cute little kids who are part of the future generation. Senior Leah Mietus is able to do this through an educational internship at Lakewood Elementary School.
Mietus has incorporated an educational internship into her senior year schedule. This consists of going to other schools, (usually elementary schools) to help out and gain experience in the classroom. According to the school website, child and adolescent development courses are the foundation courses that a student must take in order to have the opportunity of getting an internship.
During her internship, Mietus does different activities based on the day. She goes to the Media Center one day and other days she works in small groups with kids during their math time. “Occasionally I cut out some laminated papers and consider that a form of fun therapy,” Mietus said.
Mietus started hearing about it when she was a sophomore, in her first year of taking a child development class. “The teacher and internship coordinator [Rebecca] O’Neill was so encouraging and supportive of interns. Some of my friends that were seniors when I was a sophomore had an internship and loved it too so I was set on it,” Mietus said.
Junior Amy Kraft became friends with Mietus through the child development program as well and she is planning to take an educational internship. “I am very excited to take an internship next year, I have already learned so much through child development and I think that an internship will not only help me learn in regards to teaching; but it will also help me grow as a person.”
Mietus is committed to Towson, where she will study early childhood education. She said that one of the benefits of her internship is that she is learning things that can be useful in her future classroom, when she’s the teacher. “The only con is that it can be a bit stressful at times. However the internship is overall great. I get experience, meet amazing kids and form a bond with them,” Mietus said.
For those who are still debating whether they should do an educational internship or not, Mietus recommends it to people who love kids, want to work in a classroom or want to figure out if they want to be a teacher. She also said that it can get out of hand easily since children naturally get distracted. Patience can also play an important role when it comes to handling groups of children. “It gets hard, but knowing that you’re going to make a lasting impact on these kids makes it easier,” Mietus said.
Mietus said that the best part of the internship is being able to see the kids understand concepts and gain confidence in their math skills. A bonus for her is knowing that she was a big help to some of them in the process. “I have 100 percent gained experience. I’ve learned things, dealt with things very unexpected, and I officially have my heart set on being a teacher,“ Mietus said.