Reversing the Roles

Triton Teachers Shadow Students for a Day

A typical classroom setting: tables, chairs, a Smartboard, one teacher, several students, and … another adult?

Triton is initiating a trial run of an exciting new event. Teachers will be taking to the hard seats of Triton to see the school from a student’s perspective. This new program was initiated by Triton’s new principal, Mr. Patrick Kelley. 

“We hope that teachers get a better perspective of what it is like to be a student…” said Kelley.

This new initiative was discovered by Kelley on Twitter. Other administrators were posting about how they were having teachers shadow their students for a day in order to get a better perspective of the student’s experience in school. 

As of February 7th, a small list of teachers willing to shadow a student has been produced. Some recognizable faces on the list included Principal Kelley, Environmental Science teacher Mr. Thomas Horsley, math teacher Mrs. Marissa Galante, biology teacher Ms. Jamie Richards, and potentially other administrators such as Mr. Scott Brennan and Ms. Kathryn Dawe.  

Claudia Umanita, a Triton junior, commented that it will be weird to see teachers participating in their classes. “It’s going to be different, because when you look around a classroom, you don’t expect to see a middle-aged person learning alongside you” she said.

 

We hope that teachers get a better perspective of what it is like to be a student”

— Principal Kelley

Teachers will not only be learning, but imitating the school day of a Triton High Schooler. This means that if the student teachers are shadowing has a test, the teacher will take the test with the rest of the class. “I hope the test won’t be graded! I don’t want the word of my academic skills getting out to everyone”, said Carla Wagner, a teacher participating in the event. 

Along with being in class with the students, teachers will follow the student in the halls between classes, to study halls, even to lunch. “I won’t vape with them in the bathroom, though,” noted Wagner. 

“Having them in classes will be weird, but at lunch it’s going to be wacky, too. Like, what are we supposed to talk about?” laughed Triton junior Ben Janvrin. “I hope they don’t try to act like teenagers,” he added. 

Kelley’s hope for the program is that the staff of Triton will get the opportunity to see the school from a student’s perspective. “I did it once at a different school. I went from 3 back-to-back AP classes, and by the end, my head was spinning,” he explained. 

He continued on to explain he hadn’t understood the stress students had until that day. He hopes that if teachers are able to understand what it’s like to be a student again, the relations between students and teachers will strengthen. 

“I hope that the teachers who participate will be able to understand the stress we are put through,” said Umanita. “I am hoping they do it on a day when I have tests back to back so they can see what it’s like.”

Teachers and students are still being matched, and teachers are hopeful the program will begin after February vacation.