Elem vs Middle vs High School

Discussion in 'General Education' started by UpperMidwest, Jan 31, 2017.

  1. UpperMidwest

    UpperMidwest Rookie

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    Jan 31, 2017

    I have been subbing for 4 months now and am still undecided as to what grade level I want to teach. What key differences have you noticed? Do you think my observations are correct?

    Here's a few differences I've noticed:

    Student independence: Pretty obvious here with older students being more independent, younger ones need more guidance

    Student energy level: Younger students have more energy and have to be calmed down, including middle school students. HS students have to be woken up sometimes

    Student sass/attitude: to me it seems like middle schools have the most sass, then HS'ers and then elementary. Both elem and middle school students have some silliness sometimes which can, sometimes be fun. Elementary students seem to be the nicest.

    Fights: Middle school seems to have the most fights. Kids will hit one another in elementary but they aren't so much "real" rights

    "Given up on school": Certain elementary students aren't jaded and feel like they still have a chance at succeeding academically. This seems to change with age with older kids becoming more jaded

    Use of an adult voice: I've noticed that at least though 4th grade a lot of teachers use a high pitched voice, almost like baby talkish. In middle school and beyond students are talked to in an adult -like manner

    Teaching style: Elementary, especially kindergarten and first grade is often "sing-songy." For grades 2-4 it isn't sing-songy but it requires slow speaking in a "nice happy voice." The teaching voice and style in middle school and high school is pretty much the same.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2017
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  3. UpperMidwest

    UpperMidwest Rookie

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    Anyone else feel like they have to be "on" all the time when teaching elementary? As in you have to use a fake nice voice and speak slow?
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2017
  4. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

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    Jan 31, 2017

    I don't know about elem, but I teach HS seniors and definitely still have to be "on" all the time! HS students can also have PLENTY of energy, especially the boys.
     
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  5. MrFrank35

    MrFrank35 Rookie

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    Generally speaking I think your list is pretty accurate; although there are always exceptions. It really is personal preference in regards to what grade you want to teach. I prefer upper elementary because they don't require quite as constant guidance as K-2nd but they don't have all the attitude and sass of middle school yet. You could always try a grade for a few years and then switch if it's not for you.
     
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  6. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Jan 31, 2017

    I've gotten more sass from my HSers than my MSers.
     
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  7. Bo C

    Bo C Rookie

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    High school students have tons of energy, they just like to pretend that they are uninterested. One of the coolest things about teaching high school is bringing out that energy! I really like the ideas in this post about how to engage high school students, if anyone is interested. I've tried a few of these (adjusted them to fit my classroom) and found success.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2017
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  8. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    I don't use any kind of fake voice with elementary students in 4th grade.
     
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