10 November 2023
Looking for possibilities and good school practicesTeacher Training Students at Universität Hamburg Take First Field Trip
On the search for new teaching concepts, roughly 15 teacher training students from Universität Hamburg will undertake a 12-day trip through Germany at the beginning of 2024. They are preparing intensively in a seminar and organizing the tour themselves. They will take their questions to 6 schools and talk to pupils, teachers, and educators. They will present their experiences, findings, and questions in a class following the trip.
The association Kreidestau e.V. developed the field trip idea—a student initiative offered in many places in Germany. Hamburg is the latest location and the field trip is now being realized for the first time as a pilot project at Universität Hamburg. The goal is to see if can be incorporated into university teaching. The experiences should provide some guidance on permanently establishing the project.
Tharchis Soosainathan, master’s student in teacher training in secondary education (sports and English) and active in Kreidestaub e.V. in Hamburg used to study in Bochum and got to know the Lernreise concept there. Now he is advocating for the field trip for students in Hamburg: “Students can get to know the wide-ranging school landscape, look at different pedagogical and organizational concepts, and talk to experienced practitioners,” explains Soosainathan. And learning together how to learn, practicing teamwork, and thinking about what makes schools good are also important experiences. The field trip should enable students to experience self-efficacy, to find inspiration, and to gain confidence for their own work in teaching contexts.
The trip is organized at the University as a course for education students and coordinated and supported by Maren Plaum and Franziska Carl, both research associates in School Education. Both have long-standing experience in research-based teaching and networking experience with schools. The seminar and the trip, however, are organized and conceived by the students themselves.
“The concept of the field trip fosters inquisitive exchange between academics and practitioners and enables students to become familiar with inspiring practical school approaches. This makes the project an important part of teaching-related knowledge exchange in the faculty and an especially great initiative,” says Bente Gießelmann, expert for knowledge transfer in the faculty.
The ZEIT-Stiftung is supporting the pilot project by financing the participants’ trips. “The faculty is very grateful that the ZEIT-Stiftung has made it possible for a few students at Universität Hamburg to have this interesting and inspiring experience,” says Prof. Dr. Eva Arnold, faculty dean.
Dr. Tatiana Matthiesen, head of the education section at the ZEIT-Stiftung: “The professionalization of teacher training students has been a pet project of the ZEIT-Stiftung for years—whether they become school heads or teachers, as in our mentoring program WEICHENSTELLUNG. At the University, teacher training students gain a great deal of theoretical expertise, but they need experience and exchange on site when it comes to practical application. It is very laudable that Hamburg’s teacher training students have now taken the initiative to organize field trips to successful schools for their classmates. We are happy to offer support and we would be delighted if Universität Hamburg would continue to offer this opportunity in the future.”