I have been asked to teach all sciences...

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by justfluttering, May 19, 2009.

  1. justfluttering

    justfluttering Rookie

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    May 19, 2009

    Because I passed the Arizona Educator's Proficiency Exam for Biology I am considered highly qualified as a biology instructor. Well, me and several hundred other teachers were not offered contracts by our districts. Now that I am out interviewing for a new position, I have had two principals ask me to quickly take the Chemistry AEPA and the Middle School General Science AEPA. At 135.00 each test and 59.00 each review book this is expensive and to me, plain silly. Just because I might cram and memorize enough to pass a test doesn't make me a good Chemistry teacher. Right now I am teaching Earth Science and Physical Science. I know I don't know enough about Physics to do much more than a brief pass on most topics. Another teacher who is excellent with Anatomy and Physiology, Biology, and Health and Human Reproduction has been given the Physical Science classes for next year. How does this make sense? I don't know all sciences! Physics, Earth Science, Biology, and Chemistry are all huge, involved content areas; that' why teachers specialize. The job market is terrible, seems like principals want/need/demand the most "bang" for their buck, I understand the situation but the Spanish teacher doesn't teach French. Why is it normal to expect me to teach Earth Science, Chemistry, and Biology?
     
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  3. Ron6103

    Ron6103 Habitué

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    May 19, 2009

    Welcome to my world, albeit in Social Studies. I have a specialization in history, but also teach geography and civics. And while civics I can handle well enough, I only have 2 courses in Geography. And yet I teach 3 sections of it...

    And while many say "geography, history, government.... all close enough", thats not quite true. While they may not be AS far apart as the different sciences, they require different sets of content knowledge. I hate how my geography classes went this year, and I don't think I did my students justice. Bleh.
     
  4. teresaglass

    teresaglass Groupie

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    May 19, 2009

    I took a genral science test and I am helping my special ed. teacher as a para in biology and Earth Science. I am also studying the Chemistry CSET. I found that taking a class in science instruction and studying for the test gave me the knowledge. I know I will be a good science teacher.
     
  5. justfluttering

    justfluttering Rookie

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    May 20, 2009

    I know that this semester I did an awful job teaching physical science. It was my first semester teaching and I made a ton of mistakes.
     
  6. Groovy

    Groovy Companion

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    May 21, 2009

    What will you do differently next year?
     
  7. deserttrumpet

    deserttrumpet Comrade

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    May 22, 2009

    I've seen worse - there's a lady in our district teaching math and history. How much further apart can you get?
     
  8. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    May 22, 2009

    If she's qualified in both math and history, I say power to her.
     
  9. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    May 22, 2009

    Brendan in History Department chair and also teaches Algebra. And, though I'm not certified, I would love to teach American History :) (Of course, it would take me a bazillion years to prep, but I know I would love it!!)

    In my school, at least, it's fairly rare to have only one prep. Most teachers teach several different courses.

    And in this economy, being able to teach a variety of different preps gives you an edge at hiring time. I've always believed that teachers need to be versatile.

    Chemistry (and physics) teachers are impossible to find. Becoming one might mean you have a job for next year.And keep in mind: it's high school chem, not the kind of depth you saw in college.

    One of those unemployed teachers will choose to become a Chemistry teacher, I can promise you.
     
  10. justfluttering

    justfluttering Rookie

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    May 22, 2009

    I already ordered my study book for the Middle School Science and Chemistry. I am registered for the Middle School exam in July and the Chemistry Exam in August. I found a great Masters in Physical Science at Arizona State University.
     
  11. Brendan

    Brendan Fanatic

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    May 22, 2009

    Its a lot of work to teach outside your content area, but it really shows you your skills as a teacher.
     
  12. Brendan

    Brendan Fanatic

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    May 22, 2009

    I am certified in Social Studies (an old certification I know) and Mathematics. I didn't go to school for Math, but took many math courses in college. In HS I hated math with a passion, I never really had a teacher that showed me that I could do math. In college I learned that I liked Math almost as much as History and was one course away from a Math Minor. Fast forward 20 years andI am a certified Math teacher.
     
  13. justfluttering

    justfluttering Rookie

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    May 22, 2009

    What would I do differently? Everything. I hate feeling like a stranger in my classroom. I will start with a great curriculum guide, then make up my syllabus, then break it down into units and then lesson plans. I will use a big calendar and schedule in labs, two for each unit. I will start with a pretest and end with a post-test for each unit. Fridays will be non-fiction reading day for students that have all their work completed and catch-up day for anyone missing any work. If the kids don't want to read a book or a magazine, there are many great websites with current science news headlines. I will write bell work questions on index cards and keep them for review guides and test questions. I will use a LCD projector more even if I have to buy the darn thing, clickers too (or look for a grant) I will do podcasts and a webpage too. I would love to use Web Assign, an online homework and grading site. If it takes me days to grade 150 papers, and it does, then the kids don't get the feedback they need when they need it.
     
  14. INteacher

    INteacher Aficionado

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    May 22, 2009

    In my state, both social studies and science are licensed by subject area and typically we can't teach if we aren't certified in that particular area. Science licenses in my state are very specifici with each area listed - Bio, Chem, Earth Science, Physics, Phy Sci. We only have one teacher in our building that can teach Chem.
     
  15. amkamk

    amkamk New Member

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    May 23, 2009

    What books did you order for the Middle School Science test??
     
  16. ScienceTeacher

    ScienceTeacher Rookie

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    May 24, 2009

    I personally like the variety. I've taught HS Biology, physics, Marine Biology, Agriscience, Ecology, and Anatomy and Physiology. In addition, I've taught MS General Science, Life Science and Physical Science. 5th, 6th, and 8th grade math, and elementary school science.

    In addition to tutoring in subjects I've taught, I've tutored Trig and Chemistry.

    I like it. It keeps my mind active.
     
  17. justfluttering

    justfluttering Rookie

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    May 25, 2009

    I like tutoring but teaching a subject I am not familiar with makes me nervous. Plus I don't have very many lesson plans except for Biology. The school were I currently teach has few supplies for science. I didn't ask before but now at my interviews I asked if science is expected to be taught as a lab class. So far two schools that I interviewed with don't even have labs rooms, they have carpeted classrooms and no equipment. One school at least had a small budget for experiments and was willing to move the desks and bring in tables. The other school said I could do labs out in the parking lot.
     

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