Craig Carter prepares future teachers

Craig Carter is the field placement director and a lecturer of education at Washburn. He helps education majors gain career practice and hands-on classroom experience while they are in school.

“I tell people that I’ve always been a teacher and always want to teach,” Craig Carter said. “Even here at Washburn, my main job is student field experiences. I am a teacher in heart, and that’s what I love to do and that’s what gets me excited.”

As the director of field experiences, Craig Carter conducts the placement of students into schools. Education students at Washburn will have to complete over 100 hours of practicum experience in schools before they get to student teaching.

In Fall 2018, Craig Carter placed over 200 teachers in the department in different observations and practicums throughout the community. In Spring 2019, there’s a large group of 40 student teachers ready to gain experience.

“It’s the greatest thing in the world to see them [students] as they grow, as they learn, as they become teachers,” Craig Carter said. “Basically, I tell them at the beginning they are teachers. If they are truly meant to be a teacher, they have passion and energy, and that’s all that they want to do – they want to be a teacher.”

A major benefit of student teaching is to get students exposed to the classroom while they are still earning their degree.

When Craig Carter was a student teacher 47 years ago, he had never been in a classroom before. Then, he became a teacher and liked his job. However, some people find out they don’t actually like the job when they finally get into a real classroom. At Washburn, education students can find out if they like teaching in the first year, before they become too invested in the major.

According to Craig Carter, if the teachers have a passion to teach, the kids will learn, because the teacher has the most important role in a student’s learning. The ones that are excited about teaching are the ones that you learn the most from.

Craig Carter is teaching classes at the beginning and end of the degree. One is ED150, EPIC (Education Professionals in the Community), which is an introduction to education classes. He also teaches ED 400 (Understanding the School) which is the education seminar for students and teachers.

“I get to see these students at the beginning and then I see them throughout the department,” Craig Carter said. “It’s interesting to see how they grow and progress.”

Kye-Asher Carter, a junior secondary English education major, took the EPIC program class with Craig Carter. She plans to be a teacher and teach English in a foreign country.

“It’s a really good class to determine if you really want to be a teacher,” said Kye-Asher Carter. “I think education is a huge part of people’s lives. Teachers can influence their students in a lot of ways. If a teacher provides warm, nurturing environment for students to learn in, the students will flourish and grow as individuals.”