Montana Conference Holds Lab-Style Teacher In-Service
Elementary educators in the Montana Conference had an opportunity to come together for unique in-service training. These teachers gathered at the gymnasium of Mount Ellis Academy in Bozeman in order to provide adequate social distancing as well as enough space for the training. Al Reimche, Montana Conference interim president, provided an encouraging greeting to the teachers, sharing that he had, at one time in his life, also been a teacher.
As the teachers entered the gym, the setup was something familiar — a classroom, complete with tables with student name tags, an instruction table and a whiteboard. Elementary students soon arrived and found their places at the student tables while toting boxes of school supplies for the day’s activities.
The training was laboratory-style, designed to refresh teachers on strategies for teaching in multigrade settings. Students from different grade levels at the local Mount Ellis Elementary were “borrowed” for the day to assist in the laboratory experience. Presenters taught various classes, including language arts, math and social studies. The remaining teachers were encouraged to walk around and watch how the teacher was instructing the various grade levels while managing students working at other tables.
Between each session, teachers had a chance to share and debrief about what they observed. Teachers left the in-service day with new tools and ideas to take back to their own classrooms in addition to being reminded of the camaraderie felt with their peers.