Murphy, C., & Butcher, J. (2013). “They took an interest”: Student teachers’ perceptions of mentoring relationships in field-based early childhood teacher education. NZ Research in Early Childhood Education Journal, 16, 45-62.
The focus of this paper is on the relationships and experiences of third-year field-based early childhood student teachers with their mentoring teachers in their usual centre of work and with their Associate Teachers whilst on practicum. It reports on data from the second phase of a larger multi-year study (which commenced in 2008), where ten of the original eleven student teachers were re-interviewed.
Key themes emerged from the student teachers’ stories such as the importance of mentoring teachers taking an interest and being open and available. Student teachers also expected to be challenged, but supported within relationships that were respectful and authentic and to be part of cohesive teams, where relationships extend beyond the workplace.
Key Words: Associate Teacher; mentoring; field-based; teacher education; practicum.
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