The Semester Might be Ending but the Assignments Don’t Stop for Anyone

By Hope Faulkingham Contributing Writer

   There is hustle and bustle on the UMF campus as the semester is coming to a close, but the students will keep burning the midnight oil until the very last test.

   This is an incredibly busy time of year for everyone, with projects, presentations and exams that could potentially make or break passing a course. Add on practicums and outside activities and you have yourself a college cocktail called finals week.

   Katie Shupp, a sophomore Elementary Education major, is one of many students who agrees this critical week is overwhelming. “I mean it depends on the classes, but I feel like 99% of the time it is so stressful,” Shupp said with a small grin on her face and a chuckle.

   Though Shupp handles the workload pretty well, many students struggle to control the anxiety, especially freshmen, where it is their first time experiencing college academia. Shupp suggested that taking time out of study sessions to relax will allow for a little less stress.

    “I work for like a few hours and then I take a break,” said Shupp. “I go on my phone, go on Facebook, text someone, talk to my friends, eat food…I eat a lot of food, I stress eat,” Shupp laughs at herself once again and shakes her head with a big smile.

   Kim Day, a senior at UMF, also shared her thoughts and ideas on how she stays sane during this crazy time. “I wouldn’t say I have one class that is more stressful than another,” said Day. “All of my classes have been equally stressful and being in practicum adds to that, especially with student teaching right on my heels.”

   Much like Schupp, she always remembers to take a break from the all-night study session or hour long study group to keep herself healthy and happy. “I cope with my stress by trying to hang out with my friends or taking a day to myself to just relax.”

   But students are not the only ones feeling the pressure of these last few weeks, some professors are also feeling the anxiety of creeping up on them.

   “Finals-period is also stressful for professors because of the preparations for various final exams, projects and papers for the classes they teach and the feedback on assignments, essays, tests, etc.,” said Pu. “Not to mention the more frequent visits from students to office hours during this time of the semester and some impending deadlines for their own research work.”

   Pu also added some of her own advice saying, “If you’ve been keeping up with everything in a class and have been doing well all along, you shouldn’t over-stress yourself. Try to relax while getting prepared and ready to pass the last hurdles of the semester.”

  Students can be most successful in these whirlwind semester endings by staying calm and keeping focused to pass exams and presentations with flying colors.

UMF Hosts Student Teacher Professional Day

By Hope Faulkingham Contributing Writer

 The upcoming Student Teacher Professional Day is an opportunity for both student teachers and the community to learn about Civil Rights in the classroom and the effects of Proficiency Based Education on students.

   The event will cover two main topics that are very important to current and future teachers around the state. It will be split into two sessions, the first of which will focus on Civil Rights in the classroom.

   “We are very fortunate to have Brandon Baldwin, from the Office of the Maine Attorney General, working with us. He is the Project Director for the Civil Rights Team Project,” said Hiram Sibey, the main contact personnel for the event, through an email interview.

   The second session, which will be lead by Beth Lambert and Leeann Larsen from the Maine Department of Education, will cover the integration of the Proficiency Based Education into Maine’s classrooms.

   “The fall Professional Day is designed to provide student teachers with a professional development experience that will help them be successful as they start their careers as teachers,” wrote Sibley.

   Kelsey Marco, a former UMF graduate and now Elementary teacher at West Bath Elementary, added some good points about student teaching in an email interview. “I also think student-teaching gives you that hands on, authentic experience. You learn a lot as a teacher, just being in the environment of a classroom,”said Marco.

   “I had to plan math lessons, an expedition (science related, long-term project/unit), and writing units. I think that is the most important thing you learn… is to be a full-time teacher,” Marco said.

   Marco now enjoys having student teachers in her own classroom to give them the experience of planning and implementing their own units, while allowing her to observe her own class.

    These types of events are designed to help the current student teachers, the future

student teachers and community members better understand topics of high

controversy and discussion. “Events like this prepare our student teachers to be leaders

in education,” said Sibley. “Our goal is to prepare teachers to be able to grapple

effectively with the issues facing their students, and to meet the needs of every student

in their classrooms.”

   The event will be held on the 19th of October, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. in the North Dining Halls.