The Acorn

A Newsletter for CSB/SJU Cooperating Teachers

Volume 4, no. 8--Friday, December 10, 2021

Growing, Nurturing, and Supporting CSB/SJU Student Teachers

The Acorn is a newsletter for the cooperating teachers working with student teachers from the College of St. Benedict/St. John's University. This publication is intended to help our cooperating teachers understand their roles and responsibilities as well as provide them with current research and best practice in working with student teachers. Additional information helpful to mentorship, pedagogy, and current issues in education is often included.

A Message from the Director of Student Teaching

Much Needed Laughter

Supported by both science and spirit, laughter is good medicine. As we approach a much-needed and much-deserved break, I offer you a few video links connecting you to amusing perspectives on the world of teaching.

Reflecting on last week's commentary of the Science of the Positive (Linkenbach, 2010), I consider the points of positivity, perception, purpose and passion. Certainly, laughter aligns with the intention of these ideas.

Many of us are familiar with Gerry Brooks and his videos from his car. We may not be familiar with two other educators:

Devin Seabold is a teacher from Orlando, Florida who hosts a podcast called Crying in My Car. He also has a series of amusing teacher-based videos linked here.

Jess Smith is a teacher and social media creator who humorously reflects on her work in and out of the classroom. In addition to the Hot Mess Express podcast, she also has a series of videos through Bored Teacher called Real Talk with Miss Smith.


Please accept my sincere thanks for your mentorship, support, and guidance of student teachers from the College of St. Benedict/St. John's University. Your valuable presence, work, insights, and dedication are truly appreciated!

Weeks 15-17 for Student Teachers

For Candidates in 16-week placements:

Weeks 15 & 16-

Week 15--


  • Conduct one formal observation
  • Discuss transitioning back to your classroom
  • Prepare a letter of recommendation to share with the student teacher and university supervisor


Week 16--


  • Taper student teacher’s teaching down
  • Complete all necessary forms (final evaluation and dispositions of student teacher, evaluation of supervisor)
  • Participate in final triad meeting





For Candidates in 5-week placements:

Week 3--


  • Work with the student teacher on planning, preparation of lessons and materials, monitoring of student work
  • Allow the student teacher to teach up to full time for five consecutive days between weeks 3 & 4
  • Conduct one formal observation and provide feedback



Week 4--


  • Continue as in week 3
  • Conduct one formal observation and provide feedback
  • Discuss transitioning back to your classroom
  • Prepare a letter of recommendation to share with the student teacher and university supervisor




Week 5--


  • Taper student teacher’s teaching down
  • Complete all necessary forms (final evaluation and dispositions of student teacher, evaluation of supervisor)
  • Participate in final triad meeting




For Candidates in 8-week placements:

Week 7 of second placement--


  • Conduct one formal observation
  • Discuss transitioning back to your classroom
  • Prepare a letter of recommendation to share with the student teacher and university supervisor



Week 8 of second placement--


  • Taper student teacher’s teaching down
  • Complete all necessary forms (final evaluation and dispositions of student teacher, evaluation of supervisor)
  • Participate in final triad meeting

Quick Links

CSB/SJU Student Teaching Handbook


Student Teaching Observations (by Cooperating Teacher/University Supervisor/Director)

This observation/evaluation form should be used to complete observations throughout the placement. Six formal observations of the student teacher are required within the span of student teaching. We ask that you complete 6 for a 16-week placement, 5 in a 12-week placement, 3 in an 8-week placement, and 2 in a 5-week placement. The entire form does not need to be completed for each observation; however, by the end of the placement, each part should be addressed.


Additional Forms:

Cooperating Teacher Information (if not completed in the past three years)

Cooperating Teacher's Final Evaluation of Student Teacher

Cooperating Teacher's Dispositional Evaluation of Student Teacher

Evaluation of University Supervisor by Cooperating Teacher

CSB/SJU Education Department

Jennifer L. Meagher, EdD.

Director of Elementary and Secondary Student Teaching


Allison Spenader, PhD.

Chair