Gustavus Global Educators Program

Student teaching in alternative settings

Classroom scene
Students and teacher in a classroom in Riobambo, Ecuador

This immersion opportunity places student teachers (education majors, except for the J-Term option) in locations where they can experience teaching and living in an environment uniquely different from their home communities. Students selected for this program will be able to expand their skills by utilizing culturally based teaching and learning strategies that are unique to each school and its cultural context. Participants will have the opportunity to make connections and learn from the diverse perspectives at their site, in order to prepare for their future classrooms.

The Global Educators semester placements are combined with a local placement in the same semester. Students first complete a placement in Minnesota for the first half of the semester, and then they travel to one of the locations below for a placement during the second half of the semester.

Advising and application. Interested students may contact Kim Meyer, Coordinator of Teacher Admission and Field Experiences, for advising about these options and to learn how to initiate an application.

 

Current Global Educators Sites

There are currently six sites in the Global Educators Program.

Fall Semester Options

Gustavus participant teaching in Sotogrande, Spain

Sotogrande, Spain

The Sotogrande International Baccalaureate (IB) School in Sotogrande, Spain, is a progressive IB school in which students have a high level of English-language proficiency. Participants need to be creative and comfortable with developing curriculum and flexible enough to respond to changes in classes based on student interest and teacher direction.

  • Curriculum. Traditional subjects. The secondary level uses a block schedule. Most of the curriculum is project-based and student-centered, with units of study developed by the student teacher in partnership with the cooperating teacher.
  • Language. Spanish language is helpful but not necessary.
  • Grade levels. Pre-K through high school (most secondary placements are at the middle school level)
  • Selection. School administrators select student teachers based on submitted essay and course/grade list following approval via Education Department interviews.
  • Housing. At the Sotogrande School Boarding house
  • Meals. Breakfast and dinner provided at the Boarding House; lunch at the school
  • Transportation to school. Via boarding house bus
  • Numbers. 5 or 6 Gustavus participants
  • Extra travel. Site coordinator will assist with busing to nearby town of Estepona for exploration and travel to other cities. All travel must be with a peer and at student’s own expense.

 

Gustavus participant teaching in a Phoenix elementary school classroomPhoenix, Arizona

Placements include Canyon Breeze Elementary School; Garden Lakes Elementary School, or Tolleson Union High School in Avondale, Arizona. School demographics include a high percentage of Latino/a students, many from low socioeconomic areas within this district. Participants who are comfortable implementing a more structured curriculum that supports learners, and who are interested in working with high-need students, will enjoy this site.

  • Curriculum. Traditional subjects in a structured curriculum designed to support high-need learners
  • Language. No language ability is required (though knowledge of Spanish is useful)
  • Grade levels. K through high school
  • Selection. Gustavus Education faculty select student teachers based on submitted essay, course/grade list, and interview
  • Housing. In a local hotel, currently the Hilton Garden Inn in Avondale
  • Meals. Breakfast and dinner provided at the hotel on weekdays and breakfast as well on weekends; lunch is at participant cost (at school or bring food), as are weekend dinners.
  • Transportation to school. Via hotel van
  • Numbers. 3 or 4 Gustavus participants
  • Extra travel. Site coordinator will assist. Local buses can get students around the cities. Hotel van will take students to nearby shopping areas. Tours to the Grand Canyon can be arranged at the student’s expense. Travel to Mexico is not allowed, as the parts of Mexico bordering Arizona are under U.S. State Department Travel Warnings and are not considered safe for student travel by the Gustavus International Safety Committee.

 

J-Term Option

Scene from Riobambo, EcuadorRiobambo, Ecuador

San Ignacio School is located in Riobamba, Ecuador, in the heart of the Andes Mountains. Classes are taught in Spanish, and participating Gustavus student teachers need to be fluent in order to teach their subject in Spanish or co-teach with a local teacher in English by translating the subject from Spanish. This small K-8 school is seeking to expand their English courses to full subject English classes. Participation meets one of your two IEX (J-Term) course requirements.

Eligibility note. This J-Term internship is open to Spanish majors, Spanish Teaching majors, and Education majors with high Spanish language fluency. Participants must also be interested in a community-based learning (service learning) experience during their time in Ecuador, which will involve teaching English to students and faculty at the school.

  • Curriculum. The school is progressive and project-based, so student teachers will develop and teach their own project-based curriculum. Alternatively, participants may be assigned to ‘parallel teach’ and re-teach lessons in English after they were taught in Spanish by local teachers.
  • Language. Participants must have a high level of Spanish (college third year+) and be prepared for full immersion at the school and in the community
  • Grade levels. Pre-K through 8
  • Selection. Education Department will interview and select participants for internships.
  • Housing. Local homestays with families in the community
  • Meals. All meals are provided by the homestay family
  • Transportation to school. The homestay family will provide all transportation to and from school, as well as for local exploration
  • Numbers. The number of participants will be determined by student preparation and availability
  • Extra travel. Host families will provide local excursions of their own choosing
  • Cost note. Participants will cover their own travel to and from Ecuador (estimated at $650 to $800 round trip). The Gustavus CICE will provide some flight suggestions.

 

Spring Semester Options

Signpost with directional indicators showing distances to many places in the world from BarrowBarrow, Alaska

The Inupiaq population of the Barrow Schools provides an immersion into a Native Alaskan culture. Students are provided a unique experience in the cultural community of the northernmost city of the U.S. Participants will need to make traditional cultural connections in the subjects they are teaching. CRT (Culturally Responsive Teaching) will be a focus of classroom interactions. Participants who have an interest in nature and the environment will flourish at this site.

  • Curriculum. The school follows a typical U.S. curriculum, with the addition of native Inupiaq culture and focus on the environment
  • Language. No second language skills are needed
  • Grade levels. Pre-K through high school (most secondary placements are at the middle school level)
  • Selection. Gustavus Education faculty members select student teachers based on submitted essay, course/grade list, and interview
  • Housing. At the Ipsalvic Community College
  • Meals. Dinner is provided at the College, lunch at the school, and students are responsible for breakfast and weekend lunches
  • Transportation to school. Via college van
  • Numbers. 3 to 4 Gustavus participants
  • Extra travel. Site coordinator will assist with connecting students to local activities. Due to the location, participants are encouraged to get to know local college students and participate in community activities, and participants need to be comfortable seeking out social connections.

 

Students posing next to the giant letters spelling CancunCancún, Mexico

The American International School of Cancun sits in a residential area of the city, and students come from expatriate as well as local families.

  • Curriculum. The curriculum is structured with traditional U.S. subjects and grade levels. The school reflects a student-based curriculum with opportunities for learners to explore areas of interest. Teachers offer exploratory courses as well as teach typical American subjects.
  • Language. Teaching is in English. Advanced beginner to intermediate Spanish is advised for this immersion experience. Participants need to be independent and comfortable living on their own in a Spanish-speaking environment.
  • Grade levels. Pre-K through high school
  • Selection. School administrators select student teachers based on submitted essay and course/grade list following approval via Education Department interviews
  • Housing. Local apartment in heart of the city
  • Meals. Breakfast and dinner are the responsibility of the students; lunch can be purchased at school
  • Transportation to school. The school has a van to transport students to and from school
  • Numbers. 2 Gustavus participants
  • Excursions. Participants are within walking distance of local shops and buses to the beach. Taxis are inexpensive and readily available. Due to issues in the country, travel outside of the Cancun/Playa area is not allowed. Students can also set up tours (via regular tour operators) to nearby historical sites, including Mayan ruins.

 

Children playing on the playground at the school in Playa del Carmen, MexicoPlaya del Carmen, Mexico

Instituto Tepeyac – Campus Xcaret is a unique Mexican K-through-12 school. Focused on environmental issues, the school sits at the edge of the jungle.

  • Curriculum. The curriculum is based on the Mexican educational system with an emphasis on international perspectives. Participants should have an interest in environmental studies and developing student centered lessons.
  • Language. All subjects are taught in English. Teaching is in English. Advanced beginner to intermediate Spanish is advised for this immersion experience. Participants need to be independent and comfortable living on their own in a Spanish-speaking environment.
  • Grade levels. Pre-K through high school
  • Selection. School administrators select student teachers based on submitted essay and course/grade list following approval via Education Department interviews
  • Housing. Local tree house apartment on a bike trail OR homestay placement. Local apartment includes bicycles for use. Participants need to be independent and comfortable living on their own and physically able to bike to school, if necessary.
  • Meals. Lunches can be purchased at school. Breakfast and dinner are the responsibility of the students (including students in homestays, who may opt to pay the host families for these meals).
  • Transportation to school. The school has no transportation; students will bike to school or travel with homestay families.
  • Numbers. 2 to 3 Gustavus participants
  • Extra travel. Student housing is a 20-minute bike ride on a paved trail to Playa del Carmen and the beach. Taxi service is inexpensive and can be used to get to shops. Due to issues in the country, travel outside of the Cancun/Playa area is not allowed. Students can also set up tours (via regular tour operators) to nearby historical sites, including Mayan ruins.