Don't feel like I am good at my job anymore...

Discussion in 'General Education' started by teaching4God, Mar 26, 2011.

  1. teaching4God

    teaching4God Cohort

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2007
    Messages:
    589
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 26, 2011

    I know you are not supposed to compare yourself to other people, but I am really strongly feeling like I am not good at my job anymore. I teach in a very challenging area and I see all these wonderful websites online and feel pretty inadequate.
     
  2.  
  3. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2006
    Messages:
    4,858
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 26, 2011

    This is your 1st year right? I think if you survive the first year with all your hair intact, you've done an adequate job! ;)

    I was actually going to post something similar-how we are our worst critics. I think everybody feels that way sometimes. You have to take that reflection and figure out how to improve your craft-even if it's planning for next year's class. I always have a running list of things I'm going to work on-whether it's looking for pd's in that area or reading books on it.
     
  4. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2006
    Messages:
    27,534
    Likes Received:
    6

    Mar 26, 2011

    A wonderful website is NOT necessarily the sign of a wonderful (or even adequate) teacher. It's a sign of someone who knows how to make websites.
     
  5. FourSquare

    FourSquare Fanatic

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2009
    Messages:
    2,837
    Likes Received:
    315

    Mar 26, 2011

    :clap:
     
  6. BioAngel

    BioAngel Science Teacher - Grades 3-6

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2007
    Messages:
    3,644
    Likes Received:
    108

    Mar 26, 2011

    Very true! :thumb:
     
  7. teaching4God

    teaching4God Cohort

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2007
    Messages:
    589
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 26, 2011

    No, this is my 4th year. I guess I get frustrated because I have all these wonderful ideas, but the behavior of my class as a whole doesn't allow for them to really be executed without chaos.
     
  8. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2006
    Messages:
    6,181
    Likes Received:
    1

    Mar 26, 2011

    Is this your fourth year as a third grade teacher? Are you collaborating with your teammates on ways they can give you ideas, help you?
    Have you really taken the time in the beginning of the year to develop a rapport with your students and lay a strong foundation on classroom management and consequences (and rewards)?

    What exactly is going on? You say there is chaos. How so?
     
  9. teaching4God

    teaching4God Cohort

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2007
    Messages:
    589
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 26, 2011

    No, this is my first year as a third grade teacher. I taught Kindergarten in another district then fifth grade Science for two years. Our district reorganized and rezoned. None of my fellow coworkers were doing this before. We are all new at it. Our neighborhood is the most challenging in the city. There is a lot of gang activity and drug issues in the area. I have tried my best to develop rapport and train them, but from day to day they still choose to fight, not pay attention, etc. About half have been through a lot, I don't blame them for their lack of motivation. Some have kindergarten listening levels and to be honest even with my high level of classroom management, there is not enough of me to go around. I have enlisted the help of counselors, coworkers, etc., but I feel pretty unsuccessful. To be honest, this is the first time I dread going to my job for the most part even though it's not all bad. I am extremely burntout.
     
  10. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2006
    Messages:
    6,181
    Likes Received:
    1

    Mar 26, 2011

    It does sound like a tough situation. Any parental involvement? Getting a class to pay attention and engaged may be difficult in this kind of environment, but not impossible. I've seen schools who take in tough kids and do amazing things with them. It does take a lot of work, effort, hard love, self-confidence, and so on, in the teacher in order to do this. Since this is your first year as a third grade teacher, then yeah, it will be tough. If you have the same grade next year, then at least you will know what worked and what didn't work. You will be able to add that info to your "teacher tool belt".

    I wish I had more to offer. I've worked in tough environments where many of my parents were in and out of jail, students were in and out of foster care, gang members in the family, and so on. So, I do understand where you are coming from.
     
  11. teaching4God

    teaching4God Cohort

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2007
    Messages:
    589
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 26, 2011

    This is the first year that I had no one show up at the last parent teacher conference even though I called and sent letters home twice. Several told me that they would be there. No one showed up. I have always had confidence about what I do, but this year somehow, it has been shaken. I need it back!
     
  12. FourSquare

    FourSquare Fanatic

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2009
    Messages:
    2,837
    Likes Received:
    315

    Mar 26, 2011

    I think you need to do some serious community building. Morning and afternoon meetings. We've been studying families all week and Monday I'm taking time to talk to my class about how we are a kind of family. If I could go back to the beginning of the year and do that I would. Their disrespect towards each other is sick. I don't mind giving up a little instruction time to establish some common language and expectations. Read them the bucket filling book and have them compliment each other. Read a few bucket entries every day. Be consistent. It's going to take time, but I don't think the year is a wash yet. (At least that's what I'm telling myself!)

    I just observed the most amazing classroom where kids bumped into each other and said "pardon me." When they didn't like someone's answer they said "I disagree with you because..." They said "I can justify my answer by...." And they literally taught themselves for 15 minutes while the teacher met with a student in the hall. It was AMAZING to see...but this woman said it took hard work and role playing from day one. Her classroom culture was sacred to her, and she wasn't afraid to put in time on the front end to build it.

    By the way-These students were all African American and 100% low income. It is possible.
     
  13. EdEd

    EdEd Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2011
    Messages:
    3,769
    Likes Received:
    232

    Mar 26, 2011

    Hey there! I think you answered everything yourself right there - you have always had confidence, but this year is different. If you had felt you were in the wrong school, working with the wrong population, or even the wrong career from Year 1, that might mean something else. But, if you've felt you've done great every year - but this year has been off - shake it off. Not even the best teachers have perfect days, quarters, years, and even the best teachers I know have some rough years. Be honest with yourself about what you can do to improve, and if you still love what you do and think you're good at it, but if your loss of confidence is just recent, I would shake it off and get excited about starting fresh in August!
     
  14. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2001
    Messages:
    24,956
    Likes Received:
    2,108

    Mar 26, 2011

    ::
    :yeahthat:
     
  15. jlj

    jlj Devotee

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2006
    Messages:
    1,156
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 26, 2011

    First, why are you there? I mean, is it where you feel God led you? If not, that may be why things aren't going so well, however if it is where you feel led, then no matter how tough, there is a purpose to Him placing you there. It may be for that one child that you may reach in some way, it may to grow you for something bigger and better, it may be for a co-worker, it may be a troubled parent... As hard as it we all need to occasionally step back and get our priorities and perspective in order which then helps us get back on track. Talking from experience. Sorry you're going through such a bad year. I agree with a previous post, have them compliment each other. This could be done as an exercise during group time but also each time there's a conflict between students help them work through it and end by giving a compliment and shaking hands which does help them bond. Keep your head held high and whatever you do, do not let the students know when they're getting the best of you. Be the role model they so badly need in their lives.
     
  16. teaching4God

    teaching4God Cohort

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2007
    Messages:
    589
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 26, 2011

    We have done morning meetings, catching compliments, etc. I have implemented lots of ideas. They work for the majority. The climate has changed a lot from previous years. I do feel that God has led me here, but I am wondering if it is time to move or stay. I have been praying over it for months and feel like I hear hardly anything from God---just silence.
     
  17. Go 4th

    Go 4th Habitué

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2006
    Messages:
    942
    Likes Received:
    1

    Mar 26, 2011

    Sometimes silence is the answer.

    I'm sorry it's been so tough. It sounds like a lot of changes at once. That takes some time to adjust to. Sometimes what we want to see overshadows the things that we do see. Take a step back and look at what has been accomplished. Keep a list of those things. Look at the changes and the growth that the students have experienced this year. Also, write down the things that you want to see changed. Pick one and see what you can do to make it improve. Sometimes, having a simple goal of one thing at a time can help improve the outlook of everything.
     
  18. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2006
    Messages:
    4,858
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 26, 2011

    I had a class like that several years ago. By about 1:00 in the afternoon I'd pretty much give up on actually teaching a lesson. The combination of personalities just led to issue after issue. I felt like I was redirecting behaviors all day long. I seriously reconsidered whether or not I was cut out for the profession. It was really exhausting.

    The following summer I read several books on classroom management and was ready to conquer any group I got-and they were the sweetest most hard-working kids ever! Maybe it's just this group and next fall you will have an easier class?
     
  19. rbschreiber@gma

    rbschreiber@gma Rookie

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2009
    Messages:
    22
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 26, 2011

    This is not a particularly constructive comment I have to offer, but I hope in the least it might make you feel a bit better. Despite your best efforts, you can't change the world. And in your case it seems to be a bit of the old, "It's not me, it's you" thing - meaning it's not that you're at all inadequate, it's that your population is extraordinarily challenging.
     
  20. Marci07

    Marci07 Devotee

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2008
    Messages:
    1,017
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 27, 2011

    I'm not sure if this would work but can you find out what your students like. Like recess time, play time, game day, earning rewards, etc.

    I too worked in a school where there was a lot of gang activity, low motivation and we had to support from administration or parents and by 7th and 8th grade they had already figured out the system so my first year was tough.

    I decided to use incentives by finding out what they liked and wanted and giving them a chance to earn them.

    I bought a roll of raffle tickets and I would reward by groups or individuals. Groups could earn tickets by 100% homework, no behavior checks, etc. In turn they could use these tickets to buy homework pass, sit next to a friend, or buy pencils, erasers, candy.

    It worked great for me as it reduced the behavior problems and students were doing their work.

    You can also look into wholebrain teaching. I've used some components like the scoreboard techer vs. students and it has worked great.

    http://www.wholebrainteaching.com/

    Hope it helps.
     
  21. teaching4God

    teaching4God Cohort

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2007
    Messages:
    589
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 30, 2011

    It is just the student population as a whole and I know this sounds like I am beating an old drum, but I really have tried everything you guys have suggested. I am just working on hanging in there. \
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. TamiJ,
  2. futuremathsprof,
  3. footballfan1989,
  4. Ima Teacher
Total: 315 (members: 5, guests: 293, robots: 17)
test