Linking theory to practice, our education program is built around extensive field experiences that begin with your first class. Our introductory course, "Teaching in a Diverse Society," offers the opportunity to spend a day in a classroom shadowing and interviewing an early childhood education teacher to get a sense of what life is like in an actual school. You’ll then go on to take courses in areas such as inclusive education, special education, literacy, classroom management, and multicultural education. As you move through the program, your field experiences grow more intensive, and you’ll have multiple opportunities to work directly with students in both general and special education classrooms.
At Wells, you’ll be part of a highly active and engaged learning environment. We practice what we teach, structuring class time in ways that model effective teaching, with dynamic learning and lots of activity. Classes emphasize teaching for social justice and learning to teach diverse classrooms. As a small, private liberal arts college, we are also able to provide an exceptional level of personal mentorship. Throughout the education program, you’ll work closely with our highly qualified education faculty as you gain valuable classroom teaching experience and work toward your bachelor’s degree.
The Inclusive Childhood Education program at Wells leads to a Bachelor of Arts degree and dual certification in Childhood Education (grades 1-6) and Teaching Students with Disabilities (grades 1-6). The program is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), and all of our graduates who choose to continue teaching have been accepted into graduate school programs.
Student teaching, which typically takes place during the second semester of your senior year, is the capstone experience of the Inclusive Childhood Education program. There are two student teaching placements, one which occurs in a general education classroom while the other takes place in a special or inclusive education classroom (both are grades 1-6). During each 6-7 week placement, you are mentored by working teachers as you take over all aspects of classroom life: planning and delivering lessons; managing parent communication; and developing a safe, productive classroom community. In the process, you’ll create a professional teaching portfolio documenting your learning, showing your growth and acquired expertise over your time in the undergraduate teaching program.
In addition to the student teaching capstone, you’ll also have a variety of other field-based learning opportunities throughout the education program, including internships and work/study programs with area schools.
If you’re thinking about a career in teaching, you might also be interested in other program options at Wells such as:
Graduates of the Inclusive Childhood Education Bachelor of Arts program will be ready to teach in both general and special education classrooms, grades 1-6, after successfully passing the required New York State certification exams.
With adolescence certification, our education graduates also go on to teach grades 7-12 in biology, chemistry, physics, social studies, English, math, and Spanish.
New York State requires students to take and pass the following tests in order to complete their certification: Educating All Students (EAS), Academic Literacy Skills Test (ALST), two Content Specialty Tests (CST)—Multi-subject AND Students with Disabilities, and the edTPA.
Wells faculty bring diverse backgrounds in education, in areas such as literacy, social studies, and special education. We are currently engaged in program research focusing on Wells graduates and their application of effective teaching practices in the classroom. Our research and program offerings also emphasize issues of social justice and the importance of addressing the diverse needs of all students.
Take the first step toward earning your bachelor’s degree in Inclusive Childhood Education at Wells College. Apply now.
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