Teacher Dress Up: First Day of Student Teaching

First Day of Student Teaching

Look good, feel good, play good! This statement holds true for athletic competitions as well as your first day on the job. No matter how many practicum experiences you have had, observations you have completed, you’re still going to have jitters the first day of student teaching. Help combat your nerves by looking the part. Although I believe suits have a place in the classroom, I do not believe they are mandatory for student teaching. I got by just fine without my first suit until interview season rolled around. Your goal for your first day of student teaching is to impress your students and the building staff (your cooperating teacher, the administration, and all other building personnel as well). In order to do this your outfit should be professional with a pop of fun.

I selected a well-fitted (not too tight, not too matronly), sleek pencil skirt (there are many affordable options aside from the featured J.Crew version). Nothing says confidence like a girl in a professional skirt, so 10 out of 10 times I would favor a skirt over a pair of slacks.

In addition to the pencil skirt, a bow-tie blouse will separate you from other student teachers who will probably opt for a simple button down and cardigan combo. The grey sweater takes the place of a blazer (which is optional but again not mandatory) and adds a bit of pop without being too showy. Notice the longer length and tie waist details for a more youthful look without looking like an American Eagle advertisement.

Accessories are key. The patent pump will be a staple for your student teaching wardrobe. Find an affordable pair at TJ Maxx or Marshalls. If you want to supplement your shoe wardrobe with extras fill in the gaps with a fun pair from Payless or Target, but your daily pair should be a comfortable, mid-quality shoe. Another option is to find a tortoise pump. They are a bit harder to find than a basic black, but they go with blacks, browns, navy, and many color combinations that are hard to match. As the for the tote, this bag is affordable, large enough, and professional enough. Please stay clear of canvas totes and Vera.

There is no getting around it, your first days of student teaching are going to seem like an eternity. Rather than watch the classroom clock or worse off, checking your cell phone (because these types of things matter), keep a timepiece on your wrist to avoid looking like a disinterested college student. If you’re watch deprived (which many college students are), I recommend purchasing a two-tone watch to match your gold and silver. Also this stackable ring can be deconstructed to fit your color scheme; in this case, wear the silver tones. Finally, simple diamond studs add a bit of spunk and are a bit less stuffy than pearls (which could also work).

Act like you own it and you will exude confidence than only few possess this early in the game.


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