Are these good enough reasons to pursue teaching? Should I keep going or best to stop?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by Ann lee, Oct 30, 2018.

  1. Ann lee

    Ann lee New Member

    Jun 4, 2018
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    Oct 30, 2018

    Sorry for the very long post, Id be interested in first or second and not higher grades

    Growing up, Ive always really liked children. Sure, they are sometimes very difficult but I love their innocence and Im easily able to empathize and connect with them. SO many people have always told me I should be a teacher since a I enjoy working with them and easily connect with them.

    So naturally, I studied elementary education (focus on pre-k to 3)in college. I did many observations in schools, tutored, subbed, etc.Every school and classroom was so different. Through these experiences, I learned a lot about myself. I always knew I was an introvert and soft spoken but didnt expect to become extremely drained in a room full of children and when things got loud/hectic in the classroom(Any hsp teachers out there?). I felt uncomfortable in the classroom setting with all the stimulation and thought how is it possible to teach in addition to all the things going on. Teaching children requires a ton of energy.

    But I graduated with the degree and took some a year off and tutored children pre-k to 6 at a small school. I realized I was very idealistic entering into the teaching profession. Liking kids and teaching kids are very very different. However, as I gained more experience working with children, I think the exposure has made me a more used to it. Im not going to lie though, children require an immense amount of patience, especially with 20-25 students at once. Sometimes, while at my current job with 10 children at once.. I have thoughts about wanting to just run away from all the stimulation and attention they need and even think “ how do teachers who teach young children go home to their own children?!”Another thing I realized was, I thought teaching would allow me to build connections with my students but sometimes there's just no time and young children just want to have fun learning/need a lot of guidance. I love that Im able to help these kids learn, but most of time I feel like its behavior management and Im not making much of a difference.

    Because working with kids is tough and teaching an entire class..I dont know. That being said, I am pretty calm but can also be stern with children and they often respond to me well. However, I think i do lack the enthusiasm and passion required from teachers. I am also not passionate about anything in particular, but found that I can become passionate about teachingif I put the effort in (But to be honest, I'm not too sure).

    I am extremely indecisive and dobtful in general and I have thought about whether I should just go for it (I would have to start my masters (pre-k to 3)because my undergrad did not certify me and the area I live around requires one). All jobs are challenging in their own ways and the grass isnt greener on the other side.I know some people who have always knew they wanted to teach children and end up leaving and I know people who just kind of come across teaching and end up staying for years so there is really no way to tell.

    So I want to ask current teachers or student teachers, have you felt this way about your own students(overwhelmed, that its not worth all the energy regularly)? Does it get better in your own classroom and rules? .. are the feelings Im having about children/being in the classroom in general normal and something Ill get used to? Isnt it normal for people to feel this way when put in a room full of children?Or is it that my personality doesn’t suit this career path? Is it important to love the children more or to love the actual teaching part more? Do you truly feel like your making a difference? So many questions. I appreciate all honest advice.
  3. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

    Jul 19, 2014
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    Nov 1, 2018

    IMHO, being passionate about what you teach, or your content, is priority #1. I'm a science teacher, and no matter what the kids are doing/not doing, I never have to fake enthusiasm for the lessons. I will also admit that although I really like kids, I would never consider teaching students under fourth grade, and middle school would be even better. I am sure you will get other opinions that differ from my own.
  4. tchr4vr

    tchr4vr Comrade

    Oct 13, 2015
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    Nov 2, 2018

    Passion is important. Teaching is tiring, regardless of grade level or anything. I can't imagine teaching anything other than high school. Passion about teaching is a good thing, but you have to put that into content as well. For example, one of the reasons I don't to teach elementary is that I hate math. It's boring and I can find nothing interesting about it, but I know its necessary. I'm not sure I could move past that to teach kids math at the lower levels, have enthusiasm about math. And I don't think I'd do well teaching math because I despise it so much. Thus, I'm a high school English and theatre teacher. I think you have the right mindset, but every school, every class, every child is different. You can get a great class one year, and then have a class from heck the next year. You will never really know until you're in the middle of it.
  5. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

    Feb 5, 2011
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    Nov 2, 2018

    I have often wondered how people teach all day and then go home to more kids (their own). I don't want kids, which I've found is extremely rare in education. I like kids, of course- I just also like sending them home at the end of the day and having some quality child-free time!

    That said, I can't say I've ever felt like I just wanted to "run away" while teaching. Are you having these thoughts during extremely rare and stressful situations, or frequently with sort of "normal" parts of teaching? I think feeling "over stimulated" in a classroom is not a normal feeling for a teacher and something that would suggest to me that this may not be for you. Perhaps not what you want to hear, but that's my honest opinion.

    You also mentioned behavior management- yes this is a HUGE part of teaching. You can't actually get to the teaching if you can't manage the behavior. I will also say that over the 9 years that I've been teaching I've watched behavior get worse and worse every year. Sometimes I can't believe the things we just put up with on a daily basis. Maybe it's just where I am, but there also seems to be more and more piled on each year- more things to do and much less time to do them. More "accountability" and not caring about anything but data, data, data. My job has gotten harder with each passing year, not easier.

    I honestly would not recommend that anyone go into teaching unless they are in fact so passionate about it that they can't imagine doing anything else. More and more teachers are leaving the field every year. It's not the job it once was. My own parents, who are both lifelong career teachers who are extremely passionate about teaching keep asking me to really think about/work towards having a "plan B" because "no one teaches for 35 years anymore."
  6. Preschool0929

    Preschool0929 Cohort

    Sep 2, 2012
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    Nov 3, 2018

    I would encourage you to look for a profession that allows you to work more 1:1 or with small groups of students.

    I was in a similar position as you when I finished college. I wasn’t totally convinced that teaching was for me, but everyone said I should get my masters and certification and do it. 10 years and thousands of dollars in student loan debt later, I’m a teacher, and I still don’t “love” it. I’m really good at my job, I do everything I can for my students, but I look for a new position every single summer. If you already have doubts, having a classroom of your own doesn’t change those, if anything, it intensifies them because everything falls on your shoulders.

    I went back for my second masters in a different area and with my experience I’ll try for an intervention position next year so that I don’t have to manage an entire classroom.

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