Contact Us

Have a question for Childhood Studies? Contact us.

Dr. Nancy Casey, Chair
ncasey@sbu.edu
(716) 375-2141
Plassmann Hall Room B48
St. Bonaventure University
St. Bonaventure, NY 14778

What Can I Do With This Major?

ELEMENTARY & SPECIAL EDUCATION

Elementary & Special EducationThe undergraduate major in elementary education is designed to help students develop knowledge and skills necessary for effective teaching in today's elementary schools. 

Students are prepared for the teaching profession in a way that is reflective of Franciscan service to others - an ideal that is central to the mission of St. Bonaventure University.

Students choosing to major in Elementary and Children with Disabilities (Special Education) prepare for New York teacher certification in Childhood Education (grades 1–6) with dual certification in Children with Disabilities (grades 1-6). Graduates from our programs can be found in school districts all over the country, and should you want to teach outside of New York, our Certification Office will give you advice about obtaining certificates in other states. 

We believe that teachers are best prepared when they learn how to teach in real classrooms. Thus, our program involves students in extensive field experiences beginning in freshman year. While you develop knowledge about teaching, you will spend a significant amount of time interning and teaching in actual classrooms. You will work in a wide variety of classroom settings and at many different grades levels. 

Every child has unique gifts and needs, and classroom teachers are best prepared when they are ready to meet the learning and developmental needs of all children. By the end of your 4-year program, you will be ready for your own classroom where you will be able to construct learning opportunities supportive of the intellectual, social, emotional and physical needs of a diverse student population. SBU students with dual Elementary & Children with Disabilities (Special Education) certification are uniquely prepared for the challenges of today’s classrooms. 

Within a curriculum focusing on developmental learning theories, pedagogy, principles of classroom management, and sound educational research, SBU education majors are encouraged to be active participants as they create their own knowledge and develop as teachers.   

For the two semesters before student teaching, you will be involved in a Professional Development School program where you and about 15 other SBU students (along with two faculty members) spend two days a week at a local elementary school. During those two semesters, you will develop the skills needed to create supportive learning environments for children. You will become a caring, professional educator.

News, Publications & Research

More News

Hunt, Christine A.

Titles/Responsibilities Assistant Professor
Academic School
School of Education
Academic Department Elementary Education
Contact Information Office Phone: (716) 375-2315
E-Mail: chunt@sbu.edu
Office Location Plassmann Hall, B12
Courses Taught
Academic Degrees
  • Ph.D., Curriculum, Teaching, and Educational Policy, Michigan State University
  • M.S., Elementary Education, Purdue University
  • B.S., Elementary Education, Grace College
Personal Interests/Community Involvement
Other Education
Professional Background
Accomplishments
  • September 2007: Dissertation defense
  • March 2006: Co-facilitated a staff in-service with Dr. Bell at Lincoln Elementary School in Hammond, IN, on the integration of science and literacy

 Presentations 

  • A Tale of Two Voices:  PDS Journeys of Junior Faculty:  National Association for Professional Development Schools, March 9-12, 2011 New Orleans, LA (With Claudette Thompson) 

  • Professional Development Schools National Conference . March 2006 (With Dr. Cheryl Bell)
Teaching Philosophy

The central tenet of my teaching philosophy is that learning is something that occurs throughout life. As an adult and teacher, I am continuously learning and re-learning concepts as well as applying them in a variety of situations. This requires me to have a base of knowledge in order to learn the concepts and know how to apply them in a wide array of circumstances.

As a teacher it is my responsibility to provide my students with the basics they will need in order to become lifelong learners. In other words, I am responsible for guiding my students in the discovery of knowing how to learn new concepts and how to use them in new ways. They need to learn how to learn on their own. Teaching students to learn how to learn requires a teacher to play a variety of roles as well as knowing when and how to employ them.

First, there are times when the teacher is the “sage on the stage” presenting relevant information for students in the form of lectures. Didactic instruction is necessary at times to quickly and concisely present essential information that students will need. Another role the teacher has is that of facilitator. In this role the teacher needs to be an active listener in order to come to an understanding of what the student knows in order to know how best to direct instruction for the student.

It also means that the teacher needs to use observational skills as well to see how the student is using information. In this role the teacher is evaluating what knowledge the student has and how it is being put to use. This allows the teacher to determine if there are any misperceptions that need to be corrected as well as how the information is being used at present and how it could be furthered. This provides the teacher with information that leads to the choice of appropriate instruction.

Guiding students in academic content knowledge and application is one role the teacher plays. Lifelong learning also includes how to be good citizens. 

Current Research Interests/Projects
  • Educational Policy
  • Teachers and Assessment
  • School Reform
  • Curriculum and Instruction
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