Is it wrong to feel burned out during student teaching

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Hiyateacher, Jan 31, 2016.

  1. Hiyateacher

    Hiyateacher Rookie

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    Jan 31, 2016

    Note:Please forgive my grammatical error: the title should say burnt out. Sorry!
    Is it wrong to feel burnt out during student teaching? I am a high school social studies intern in a graduate level certification program and I just don't know if I can keep doing this! Last semester I thought that I was doing a good job - lesson planning and developing a rapport with students - but now I feel like I can't do anything right. It also feels like I am never caught up with everything. I worked in a high school previously in a support staff role. I was well aware of what I was getting into and how stressful teaching can be, but this feels like pure distraught. Student teaching is when you're supposed to be excited and passionate about teaching, but I'm just not feeling it anymore. Please help! Is there something wrong with me?
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2016
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  3. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

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    Jan 31, 2016

    Sounds normal to me - it is an exhausting roller coaster ride that stresses out most student teachers. Sorry for the bad news, but it is the nature of the beast.

    By the way, you can correct your title by going to the thread tools, upper right corner above your post.
     
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  4. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    Jan 31, 2016

    It's not really about right or wrong, it's more about can you not burn out?
    During my student teaching I wouldn't say I burned out, but it felt like I fell off the face of the Earth. I woke up at 6 am, went to school (kind of anxious in the morning so I always went early to calm my nerves), school was out at 3 pm, or 3:30 pm, I can't remember but I would normally get home at 4-4:30 pm. I would fall asleep on the couch watching tv, my brain was basically useless at that point. I woke up around 7 pm, started cooking and cleaning and then stayed up until 11 pm to plan and grade.
    Every day. On the weekends I spent a lot of hours trying to catch up or go ahead.

    It was hard. I was passionate about teaching, I enjoyed it, I did a good job, but it took a toll on me and even my friendships. They stopped asking me to go out because I would always decline, and I would even forget to return phone calls. I would check my messages on the way home, but didn't want to talk while driving and I would completely forget about it, until 2 weeks later I would go over my saved messages.

    It's not right or wrong, it's just something that might happen. Your aim is to do a good job, impress your mentor teacher, the P, learn all you can and try to stay healthy, physically and emotionally.
     
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  5. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    Jan 31, 2016

    I'd be more worried if you weren't feeling a little burnt out during student teaching. If you're doing it right, it's tiring and stressful. Focus on ways to work smarter, not harder, and express to your cooperating teacher the way you're feeling, and find out how he/she manages the workload.
     
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  6. agdamity

    agdamity Fanatic

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    Jan 31, 2016

    Part of it could be the time of year. Third nine weeks is always my heaviest content, students who normally don't struggle start to struggle with some of it, more parents become concerned about progress, etc. On top of all of that, there really aren't any long weekends or days off unless you have a random snow day. It will get better!
     
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  7. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Jan 31, 2016

    I laughed out loud at this, because this was so far from my own experience. My situation was a little different than yours because I student taught and then I interned, but my student teaching was next to useless as my master teacher wasn't really someone who should have been mentoring new teachers (she just wanted someone to do her job for her while she ran out and got Panda Express) and interning while extremely valuable, was some of the hardest months of my life!

    You're in for tough times your first few teaching experiences. Just accept that's how it will probably be, but also accept that it gets easier with time, and you'll begin to enjoy yourself more once you have gotten into a routine and have set procedures to get you through all of the paper work, planning, and other things you need to get through.

    No worries. What you're feeling is completely normal.

    I was also thinking 'burned out' sounds just fine to me. =] Though sometimes in this profession it can either mean 'greatly stressed' or 'stressed to the point of quitting'. I hope your burned out is the former rather than the latter.
     
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  8. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    My semester of student teaching was intense. I was busy studying for the RICA (this test is specific to CA elementary teachers), taking evening classes at a Cal State University that's 40 miles from my home, and trying to plan stellar lessons for my kiddos.

    I must say, though, that I learned a lot (during that semester) about time management, goal setting, and prioritization.
     
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  9. Mr.history

    Mr.history Cohort

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    Feb 3, 2016

    What subjects are you teaching(US history, world history, ect)
    My student teaching semester was crazy. I was burnt out from writing the crazy lesson plans, trying to complete paperwork, and also teaching/grading on top of it. The 3 years I've had my own classroom have been much easier.

    Do you have resources? How much autonomy do you have in lesson planning? When I student taught the teacher basically gave me free roam to do whatever I wanted and it was crazy trying to plan. If you teach US history or Civics I can give you some resources to help!
     
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  10. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Feb 3, 2016

    I don't think I got through a single week of student teaching without a massive sobbing event, and I was 33 when I did my pre-service. It is a rough time, but there is an end in sight. My biggest problem was that my CT refused to give up control of the classroom, making it incredibly difficult for me to manage discipline or even write my own lesson plans.

    This may sound nuts, but I learned more from subbing for two years than I did in my student teaching rotation.
     
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  11. Rox

    Rox Cohort

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    I had two student teaching experiences, and both were brutal. It's normal. Not only are you trying to teach, plan lessons, etc., but you also have to work to impress your mentoring teacher and university professors. When I had my first teaching job, it was SO much easier in comparison! Not that teaching is easy, but compared to student teaching, it was easy as pie. Hang in there!
     
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  12. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    I actually never cried, but it was hard. I was teaching 8th grade, 2/3 of the classes were boys. Rough, not inner city rough, just rough for me, because according to them I wasn't even getting paid so why should they listen to me?
    The mentor teacher completely handed over his power after 3 weeks. After the 1st few days I started doing warm ups with then, then part of the lessons, then the whole lessons. Starting the 3rd week I was planning, teaching, grading, calling home, holding detentions, attending weekly meetings, school functions, everything. My teacher was in a completely different room just chillin', was available for help if I needed him, and we always talked during lunch and after school, basically whenever I needed him, but I was on my own.

    I got a great taste of what a teacher does on the daily bases, and what my days would be like. This was for 5 months, so it was very realistic.
    I have learned so much more than I would have as if he held my hand through the process.
    I still remember all the advice he gave me, all the things he suggested in particular situations.
     
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  13. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Feb 3, 2016

    While it's true that you learn a lot more from being in front of your own students, just throwing a completely new teacher in front of the kids isn't good for the kids. The teacher just isn't prepared enough to provide a good education, and most people would probably just quit teaching (even teachers who would have been great teachers with a little more preparation) within the first year leaving the students with no teacher.

    Ideally, all new teachers would be paired with a really good master teacher who could really guide them and help them from before the school year, till the end, helping them learn classroom management strategies, lesson planning, all the ropes, and then the next year working with them outside of the classroom to answer questions, etc. while each teacher ran their own classroom.

    Of course, that's not the reality, but that's how it should be. I think schools and districts mostly use the alternative certification route to fill a classroom with someone who breathes while paying as little as possible for them and giving them no support.
     
  14. a7410333

    a7410333 Rookie

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    It's ok to be burned out. I had a terrible first student teaching placement due to a very rough school and a mentor teacher who had other priorities than mentoring me. I never wanted to quit, but there were times when it was very rough.

    As a teacher now, it's much better. I can have bad days, off days, take chances, etc. without someone watching. It's much better.
     
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  15. Hiyateacher

    Hiyateacher Rookie

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    Feb 3, 2016

    Thank you so much! I teach World History, would love to teach US History someday through!
     
  16. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Feb 3, 2016

    I think that observing, helping, and doing are three very different things. I also thought I had a good understanding of the school system when I started my student teaching, and I did, but just knowing what you're getting into is very different from actually doing it. You may have known all the duties a teacher had, and that they were busy, and that it would involve going to lots of meetings and completing tedious paperwork - but had you ever actually done all that together before your student teaching? Probably not.

    It's totally okay to be overwhelmed and a bit disenchanted. Don't lose heart though. Keep finding little ways to improve. Maybe start a list of things that went well so you can remember your small successes.
     

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