Little victories help 1st-year teacher build confidence

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A new teacher at Westwood Elementary is slowly learning what educating third-graders involves.

Laura Westercamp knew before the start of the school year that parents would be depending on her to be sure students were reading and understood math well enough to pass the IREAD3 and ISTEP tests they’ll take for the first time at the end of the school year.

What she didn’t know was the best way to schedule those lessons around lunch time and bathroom breaks, or what a third-grade teacher is supposed to do on recess duty.

That’s why after spending seven hours with her students each day, she stays after school most evenings for another three hours, sometimes with Westwood’s other third-grade teachers and other times by herself, trying to plan for the rest of the week — or sometimes just the next day.


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