Role reversal for students, teachers at Mundelein-area school

Editor's note: This story was changed to say students interact with multiple teachers during the school day.

Most days, elementary school students are closely watching their teachers as they take in the lessons of the day.

But on Monday at Fremont Intermediate School near Mundelein, it was the teachers watching and learning from their students.

Teachers in Fremont Elementary District 79 are shadowing students to experience their daily lives.

They walk the hallways to change classes, eat cafeteria food for lunch, complete writing assignments and take part in class activities.

"It is kind of nice to see and learn new techniques as a teacher and just see how students feel when they are with different teachers and then have to come back to the classroom," said third-grade teacher Colleen McGee, who shadowed fourth-grader Christina Vargas on Monday.

"As teachers, we think we know what our expectations are and that they're pretty clear to students, but it is pretty interesting to see what it is like from the other side," she added.

According to Elizabeth Freeman, assistant superintendent of innovative learning, teaching, and technologies, students interact with multiple teachers during the school day.

"This student shadowing activity helps teachers to evaluate their own teaching practices as they develop empathy for the student experience," she said.

  Third-grade teacher Colleen McGee, left, walks with fourth-grader Christina Vargas Monday as she shadowed the student at Fremont Intermediate School near Mundelein. Fremont Elementary District 79 is having teachers shadow students to get their perspective on the school day. Gilbert R. Boucher II/
  Third grade teacher Colleen McGee, right, works with fourth-grader Christina Vargas while she works on a writing app on her computer tablet Monday at Fremont Intermediate School near Mundelein. Gilbert R. Boucher II/
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