February proved to be a busy month for COE’s School of Teacher Education (STE). In addition to hosting teacher education undergraduates from Bukkyo University (BU) from February 21 to 23, STE also hosted a smaller group from Miyagi University of Education (MUE) the week before, from February 13 to 15.

STE faculty Dr. Rosela Balinbin-Santos and Dr. Stephanie Buelow along with Aaron Levine were instrumental in planning the activities in collaboration with MUE and BU faculty prior to the groups arriving. For these COE faculty, these study tours are a great opportunity to connect with other scholars towards possible collaborations for teaching and research.

COE and Bukkyo teacher candidates engaged in small group discussions based on findings from STE 403B students who visited Japan in the summer of 2016

While at the partner schools, the participants from Japan had the opportunity to observe classrooms, interact with K-12 children, teachers, administrators, as well as with COE teacher candidates and faculty.

A major takeaway was the two-way learning that took place, both for our guests who learned about our approaches to teacher preparation and for our own faculty and students gaining experience engaging in multilingual contexts, both with MLL (Multilingual Language Learner) K-12 Hawaii students as well as the teacher candidates from Japan. This was especially apparent in STE faculty Dr. Brook Chapman de Sousa’s MLL class (STE 320) during which BU teacher candidates and COE candidates discussed and exchanged MLL teaching strategies with each other.

Tabata-sensei of MUE shared his thoughts after observing a p4c session at Waikiki Elementary School

Students and faculty from MUE together with their counterparts in STE also engaged in several p4cHawaii activities led by K-12 students and teachers. They also visited Mid-Pac Elementary and Jarrett Intermediate School, and met with University Laboratory School leadership on Teacher Institute Day.

Meanwhile, BU teacher candidates taught a lesson to third grade classes at Hokulani Elementary School – a highly anticipated experience. They also visited the Laboratory School and enjoyed observing Hawaiian immersion classrooms at Anuenue School.

A joyful moment during a lesson taught by Bukkyo University teacher candidates to a 3rd grade Hokulani Elementary classroom

With the visits concluded, STE 403B instructors Aaron Levine and Dr. Kevin Traynor, with course assistant Chisato Nonaka are busy preparing for the upcoming education-themed field study in Japan in the summer where students will visit both BU and MUE in return.

Visit the STE 403B page for more information.

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