Being a guy...

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Billy--, Mar 6, 2014.

  1. Billy--

    Billy-- Rookie

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    So yeah, here's the thing...I'm going to school to be an elementary school teacher, but what are your thoughts on guys teaching the younger levels? I have a great imagination, and an abundance of patience that will be useful for teaching the fun little terrors, but I know there are other teachers, and parents/guardians that aren't too thrilled that there are guys teaching younger kids, and it makes me uncomfortable to know that... :dunno:
     
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  3. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    I think having male teachers in elementary is GREAT! I've never met anyone that doesn't think that, actually. We only have one at our school, and the parents and kids love him.
     
  4. SF_Giants66

    SF_Giants66 Cohort

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    I'm going into middle school, but I did an elementary school observation in my introductory education course two years ago, and the teacher told me she wishes more men would get into elementary school.

    For early childhood education, there is still quite a bit of prejudice unfortunately, but if you wanted to teach grade 3-5, I don't see much issue with that.
     
  5. Billy--

    Billy-- Rookie

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    Well oddly enough in Virginia, they have grades K-3 as a choice, and that's what I'm going for. I know there's actually a male Kindergarten teacher in the county that one of my old teachers introduced me to, so I'm not too worried about trying to get a job here in the future, I just need a boost in self confidence :)
     
  6. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    The male teacher at my school is a kindergarten teacher. Honestly, I think it's GREAT when men teach primary grades. A lot of kids don't have a strong male role model in their life. Don't let people make you feel like it will be "weird" to teach the little ones because you are male. The kids will love you!
     
  7. bros

    bros Phenom

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    I student taught Kindergarten. The parents loved me being in their child's classroom.
     
  8. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    I agree that we need far more male teachers in elementary, particularly lower elementary. It saddens me deeply that the prejudice exists.
     
  9. newday

    newday Rookie

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    Have teachers and parents actually told you they weren't fond of male lower elementary teachers? I have never heard that sentiment before. As a mom and a teacher of lower el, I fully support having male teachers for younger students. Some kids need to be exposed to more male adults as role models.
     
  10. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    When my son was in kindergarten, there was a male sub one day. Several mom took their daughters home because they weren't going to leave their daughters with "a stranger". I was mortified and embarrassed.
     
  11. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    A close friend of mine retired from the Navy after 20 years and taught K for 20+ years. He taught my two youngest. Parents loved him and he loved the job. At one time we had 3 male teachers in our small school. But my experience is just VERY few guys teaching elem. Go for it. You will be under a microscope for awhile but it will be worth it. I LOVE the young kids and the way they see the world. Patience is the key. I think K is the most challenging age in Elem.
     
  12. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    I went to a sub job once for kindergarten. I got to school and they told me I would be subbing in fifth grade, instead. I found out later that they just pulled one of the 5th grade teachers out to sub in kindergarten, and made that teacher write sub plans for me to teach her class.
     
  13. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    I have a male friend who is an excellent elementary/special ed teacher. If that's what you want to teach then go for it!
     
  14. ATXMusic

    ATXMusic Rookie

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    I teach K-5 music. No problems being a male here.
     
  15. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    One of my most favorite teachers was my 4th grade teacher Mr. T.

    The person whose classroom management doctrine I follow is a male elementary school teacher. I don't think there is anything wrong with it at all. You aren't the first and you won't be the last male elementary teacher.
     
  16. Rockguykev

    Rockguykev Connoisseur

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    I more frequently hear the opposite that we need more of them. There are always those who are going to think otherwise but that is the case no matter what grade you teach as a male unfortunately.
     
  17. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    What???:eek: That's crazy, IMO.

    I wish me had more males at my school (grades 6-12). I believe that in my school environment, males are an asset especially when it comes to discipline and dealing with physical altercations.
     
  18. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    If you don't already read Look At My Happy Rainbow, you should. Awesome male kindergarten teacher who used to post here regularly. He's been at it for a few years, but hopefully he still has some of the older posts from when he first started in that grade.
     
  19. Billy--

    Billy-- Rookie

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    Oh, I wasn't planning on giving up! I've been wanting to be a teacher for quite a while...I thought high school would be the ticket, but it didn't feel right, and then I started looking into teaching Elementary school... I think it'll be just the right spot, and like most of you've said, there are a lot of kid's that need a male figure in their life, whether they be my student or not, I'll be open to helping all of them, if I can :)
     
  20. teacherguy111

    teacherguy111 Cohort

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    I taught 3rd grade last year… while I had fun and was happy to have my own class, it was too young for me. But I don't see anything wrong with having elementary teachers that are guys.
     
  21. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    As a teacher, I was very accusomted to being the only male teacher at my site. I think the parents loved seeing a male educator at the elementary level.

    At my current site, we have three male teachers: 1 third grade and 2 fourth grade.
     
  22. Nate

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    I got my first job (at an elementary) because the principal had a general rule of interviewing every man who applied at her school, because she wanted as balanced a staff as possible. She didn't give them preference in the hiring, but they got in the door.

    Plus, whenever you go to professional development and conferences for k-5 ed, there's never a line at the men's bathroom.
     
  23. SleekTeach

    SleekTeach Comrade

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    I'm a male and I teach 1st grade. I had the same concerns as you but now I realize it was for no reason. No one treats me any differently than they treat the female teachers. Now one thing that is kinda iffy is the whole "male figure in their life thing." This is true, but if they kids get too attached they will start hugging you and that's something you definitely do not want.
     
  24. SF_Giants66

    SF_Giants66 Cohort

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    While prejudice will always take place, I don't think the anti-male kindergarten teacher people will have much of a voice in society for much longer. There are a lot of men going into teaching young kids, and the people who are compulsively fearing sexual abuse irrationally will likely end up seeing that many of these abusers are also women so discriminating against someone for being a man is disrespectful.

    I like younger kids too, but I don't know if I could teach large groups of them, that is why I am going into middle school. Usually the kids I babysit every now and then are elementary school age and I do just fine, but managing large groups of them is more difficult for me.
     
  25. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    I have never heard that either except on these boards. I graduated college with a guy that ended up becoming a kindergarten teacher and my daughter's school has a male 4th grade teacher that everyone loves.
     
  26. Geologygirl

    Geologygirl Comrade

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    My husband had the same concerns which is why he did not go into the job he wanted (teaching day care). When he was in college he had gotten a job working a a child care center in a children's hospitable where he took care of the healthy kids while mommy and daddy went to talk to doctors about their sick children.
    He loved it especially working with the prek kids but was scared of what other people would think so he did not pursue it as a career which is a pity. I honestly think you need a special type of personality to teach the little kids, and anyone who has the energy, and patience to do so are a saint whatever their gender.

    If this is something you want to do I think you should go for it. Just keep the same precautions as all teachers should take. Namely do not be alone with a student without the door open and if they go for the hug try a one armed side hug or a high five/fist bump. I am a lady and I am still careful about these type of situations. Sign of the times.
     
  27. newday

    newday Rookie

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    Wow! So sad to think of what those girls are learning from their moms by acting in such an odd way.
     
  28. eternalsaudade

    eternalsaudade Companion

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    As a guy who teaches the very little ones (twos, but have also worked with infants and younger toddlers), I have gotten overwhelmingly positive responses to my presence in child care and have never had a parent who expressed discomfort with my caring for their children. If it's what you love, go for it and don't worry what others think. Times are changing and honestly I think it's important for kids to see that taking care of and teaching young children does not have to be just a woman's job and men can be just as caring and nurturing as women can.
     
  29. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    I have rarely been so mortified.

    It was over 15 years ago--things have changed considerably since then, at least in my area.
     
  30. readingrules12

    readingrules12 Aficionado

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    I'm a male teacher, and I have taught for over 20 years. Most of those years are in 3rd grade. I wouldn't worry that much about you being a male. I do feel too many male teachers allow themselves to be convinced that they should teach upper grades. I taught middle school for one year and I didn't like it much. I have loved teaching 3rd, 4th, and 5th and I am glad that I did so. Just like females do, choose the age level that best fits your personality and style.
     
  31. Billy--

    Billy-- Rookie

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    Thanks for the positive feedback, everyone! I wasn't planning on giving up, I was just unsure how I should feel about the situation, but reading all your comments helped me out tremendously! You all are too awesome! :D
     
  32. teacherman1

    teacherman1 Devotee

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    When I made my career change in the mid-nineties it was my wife (who is an elementary teacher herself) who encouraged me to become an elementary teacher. She was working at an inner city Catholic School at the time and recognized that good male roll models were badly needed in her school. In fact, the only male they saw during the day was the janitor.

    She knew that I loved working with younger kids since I had been Mr. Mom for our own four (2 by birth and 2 adopted) while conducting my business out of our home.

    She was right. There is a HUGE need for more good male elementary teachers - especially in inner ciy and high-poverty schools. For most of the kids I taught in my 1st and 2nd grade classes I was the only adult male role model they saw.

    It was extremely rewarding and I never regretted choosing elementary over Middle or High School. I know that would not have been a good match for me.

    Bear in mind, though, that because you are a male, you will have to go above and beyond to "protect" yourself against unfounded accusations.

    For example, I was the only male teacher in my school. I had an excellent female aide for the first 6 or 7 years of my career and she and I made it a point that she was present in the classroom whenever I worked with individual students or small groups. Either that or I worked right outside the room in the hall where people could see what was going on.

    The last few years I was there they took away my full-time aide, so it made things more difficult. One of the building "rules" was to keep my classroom door shut and locked at all times and I found this very unsettling.

    So if I were working with individual kids or small groups I'd prop the door open and work right near the entrance. On more than one occasion this got me into trouble, but this was the only way I'd work with them.
     
  33. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    I used to do the same.
     
  34. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    The hardest part of being a male teacher is if you're a special ed teacher. It's a reality of life then that there will be times you're alone in a room with one or two students, and sometimes (testing, primarily) the door will have to be closed. Whenever I knew I was working with individual students and needed the door closed, I'd always ask my neighbors to look in the window whenever they happened to pass my room, and I would keep a tape recorder going (since the only time my door needed to be closed was during testing, this served the added purpose of letting me go back and check any unclear responses, etc). As much as possible, I stayed sitting in such a way that anybody who walked past my door would clearly see me and the student I was working with.
     

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