Help!! I'm overwhelmed!

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by Andrea281, Jun 17, 2011.

  1. Andrea281

    Andrea281 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jun 17, 2011

    Hi everyone!
    I have been a pre-k teacher for 10 years. I just found out that I will be teaching 3rd grade next year and am in a panic! I have never taught the elementary grades.
    How big of an adjustment will this be? I don't even know where to begin! Thank you for your advice.
     
  2.  
  3. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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

    Jun 17, 2011

    Welcome!

    I have no concrete advice to offer; the youngest I've ever taught is 7th grade.

    But you have 10 years of experience. You're a GOOD teacher. You simply have to learn a new prep, and you have two whole months to do so.

    So go grab a cup of coffee, take a look at your textbooks, and give the elementary people here a chance to wake up. You'll do fine.

    I've got to get my kids up for school :)
     
  4. BioAngel

    BioAngel Science Teacher - Grades 3-6

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

    Jun 17, 2011

    You will learn a lot about teaching 3rd grade during the first year that you do it. This past school year was the first time I taught 3rd grade and I loved it. Before that I only taught 5th grade.

    Since you taught younger kids, you'll want to familiarize yourself with what exactly 3rd graders are capable of doing.

    This site might help you to be understanding what they might be learning-- http://www.internet4classrooms.com/skills_3rd_original.htm Also check out your state's standards.

    The curriculum and skills will be different, but kids are kids :)
     
  5. queenie

    queenie Groupie

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2008
    Messages:
    1,392
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jun 17, 2011

    I have never taught PreK or third grade, but I can offer the perspective of a second grade teacher so you'll know what to expect when they first come to you :)

    By the end of 2nd grade MOST students are able to work independently for short stretches of time (up to an hour or so with changes in assignments), given good instructions. They can read silently, independently for several minutes (about 20). They are able to wait to go to the bathroom, for the most part. They are competitive. They are loving and still want to please, but are getting more conscious of their peers' opinions. They generally don't like to be singled out. They like to have important responsibilities. They LOVE Science "experiments" and hands on stuff! They like "new" things- things they don't expect or haven't seen before (like watching eagles hatch via eaglecam). They are developing definite likes and dislikes for specific subject- usually based on which subjects they have had success with. They still enjoy rewards (even stickers!).

    Most of them are reading short (some, longer) chapter books. Many of them love to read- some pretend to read so they won't get in trouble during silent reading time. Most who don't like reading struggle with sounding out mulitisyllabic words or lack decoding skills. They need to be given many short successful opportunities to read to build their confidence.

    They know how to add and subtract with regrouping (borrowing and carrying) for the most part. They have likely been introduced to multiplication. They likely have no idea what division is yet. About half can count money well and make change for a dollar. Most can identify coins and count them individually- those who have issues counting money usually struggle with going from quarters to dimes...25...35... because they are used to counting by either fives or tens...counting by tens when there's a 5 in the ones place throws them. They can tell time but probably not to the minute quite yet for some of them.

    My advice would be to have high expectations- several have never been REALLY pushed, give them responsibilities and lots of opportunities to be successful in different areas.

    Also, in my district at least, the move to third grade seems like a giant leap because in the primary grades they are learning to read, but once they hit third grade they are expected to read to learn. There is all of a sudden (it seems to me) a lot more independent work, writing in place of discussion, and seatwork in general. Plus third graders in our district are the first to take standardized testing so it seems the teachers' biggest job is to prepare them for the state test! I know that in my class for Science and Social Studies we discuss and explore, but never have a quiz or anything- they don't even get grades on their report cards for these subjects, but in thrid grade they must STUDY for tests every few weeks in Science and Social Studies. My daughter was in third grade this year and I just thought the jump was HUGE. She did very well, ending the year with a 4.0 (somehow) but I'm sure many of her classmates didn't fare so well. :dizzy:

    Let me know if you have any specific questions about the kids who just left second grade, as far as abilities, expectations, behavior, etc.!
     
  6. CFClassroom

    CFClassroom Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2008
    Messages:
    1,726
    Likes Received:
    1

    Jun 18, 2011

    Congrats and welcome to the world of teaching 3rd. I think you'll love the independence, content areas and higher-level activities. You can visit my site to see how I run my 3rd grade classroom, but a quick Google search of "Beth Newingham" will lead you straight to what I consider to be the ultimate 3rd grade teacher. Have fun!
     
  7. Andrea281

    Andrea281 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jun 18, 2011

    Thank you

    Thank you everyone for the great advice! I truly appreciate it!
     
  8. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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

    Jun 18, 2011

    Why not start thinking about "Stuff", since it's a Saturday morning.

    I bet there are lots of garage sales going on-- why not hit a few and see if you can pick up some children's books?
     
  9. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Messages:
    3,060
    Likes Received:
    538

    Jun 18, 2011

    I taught 3rd grade last year and loved it. The students have been working hard to develop those literacy skills in K, 1, and 2 and now most of them are ready to use them. They love research projects and writing. It's a magical year as they start to apply what they have learned. They ate up anything non-fiction. Our social studies curriculum is countries around the world in grade 3 and they loved learning about different cultures. You'll want lots of books in your classroom - fiction, non-fiction, picture, chapter, etc. so I agree with Alica- hit up those garage sales today!

    They are able to solve many of their playground issues on their own now, but will still need help with some mediating. They understand the rules and are eager to please. My class responded really well to a "marble jar" where they earned marbles for whole class on task behavior and when the jar was full we had a celebration.

    They still love sitting on the carpet and being read to. I did most of my teaching at the carpet. I read aloud daily from a chapter book and they were always enthralled with the story.

    It's a beautiful age. Just love them and you'll have an awesome year!
     
  10. Srohl

    Srohl Rookie

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2011
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jun 18, 2011

    I would start making lists of different categories of things I need to decide. For example....
    Discipline
    Room set up
    Procedures and expectations
    Questions I need to ask on A-z
    Things I need to buy


    Then keep those lists with you at all times, so you can add things as they pop into your head.
    You will be fine! If you can teach pre-k then you can do anything!!
     
  11. trayums

    trayums Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2005
    Messages:
    2,424
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jun 18, 2011

    Beth Newingham's site is amazing!
     
  12. Teacher Chele

    Teacher Chele Habitué

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2007
    Messages:
    991
    Likes Received:
    1

    Jun 18, 2011

    I agree with a PP-check out Beth Newingham's Site!!! Brush up on your state's standards for 3rd. Also, check out Christa Bainbridge's site. She teaches 2nd, but lots of her stuff would still work for 3rd. I taught K and 1st for 10 years and then moved to 3rd. I LOVED it!!!! The "meatier" teaching is so fun!!! I also love to teach writing and it was great with these kids. I bet you will love it!!!! Praying for you as you adjust and get used to things...you'll do great!!!!
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. nedmoe
Total: 506 (members: 1, guests: 488, robots: 17)
test