Males in elementary education

Discussion in 'Elementary Education Archives' started by JGrizzle, Nov 7, 2006.

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  1. JGrizzle

    JGrizzle Rookie

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    I need some help, I am sophomore in college and a major in elementary education. I need some more thoughts as to the importance of male elementary teachers. More specifically, the impact that these teachers have on their students.... any thoughts at all on the subject of males in the field would be greatly appreciated......... especially from males.


    Thanks,
    James
     
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  3. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    I'm not a male, but can I offer an opinion? I wish that there were more males teaching in the elementary grades. My son never had a male homeroom teacher, and my daughter has her first in grade 7! In fact, my daughter never had a male teacher, for any subject, until this year, and my son only had a man for gym until he hit grade 7. The school I am teaching at has lots of male teachers--almost 1/2 of our teachers from grades 3-8 are male. I think that the students benefit from the difference style that many men bring to the table, and for many of our boys this consistent, positive male role model is crucial. There used to be a stigma regarding male teachers, especially in lower elementary grades, but that has changed. One of the best kindergarten teachers I have ever met was a male!
     
  4. Lesley

    Lesley Habitué

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    I am not male either, but I have worked with and my own children have had male teachers in elementary school. I think it is important that kids see male educators at every level. Kids today need a male role model, many of them do not have an adult male in the household at least a consistent one and it is good for both the boys and the girls to have a role model who is male.
     
  5. Tigers

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    you said "some more," so if you can give us what you have already, we can fill in the rest. This way we can avoid repetition :)
     
  6. Danny'sNanny

    Danny'sNanny Connoisseur

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    I have noticed that a lot of the male teachers I've worked around were the "troublemakers" themselves in school- so they understand the boys better when they act up...
    I also think male teachers are important for showing boys that learning isn't just "sissie stuff" or only for girls.
     
  7. Go 4th

    Go 4th Habitué

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    It breaks the steroetypes that teachers have to be women. Children need to see they can be anything they want regardless of sex. The typical male teacher is a high school coach. :(

    Plus, men add a whole new dimension to teaching. They often get respect just from being male, which stinks. with so many homes being single parents, the more male influence students have, the better. We have 2 male teachers in our 4th grade and my oldest son can't wait to be there and get one of them. I asked him why when i saw your post, and he said they were more fun! One of them dresses up for his lessons--he has been a Minuteman, a Pilgrim, an Indian, and a division sign.

    Good luck! We need you!
     
  8. SnowDaisy822

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    I did my student teaching with a male teacher in a 4th grade. Like others have said, I think the biggest thing is the positive male role model. In today's society, a lot of kids live with just their mothers. It really helps to have a male. He told me that a lot of his kids really bloom and he likes to think it's because they have that male. Also, the boys can have another boy to look up to. If their male teacher says something's cool, they're more likely to like it. That's what I've always felt
     
  9. teachingmomof4

    teachingmomof4 Groupie

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    I am not a male either but do have two boys in elementary school. Although my youngest boy has not had a male teacher yet (3rd grade) my oldest has had two. He had the first one in the 4th grade who looped with the class to 5th. He is now in 6th and has a different male teacher.

    For him, it was a wonderful thing. In 4th grade is when he seemed to start "blossoming" and really becoming a model student. Although he has always been excited about school and learning, he seemed to take on a whole new aura about himself. He was excited about telling me about his day and sharing things about his teacher, etc. He loved to (still does) share things with his teacher and couldn't wait to see him each day.

    I also read somewhere (can't remember where) that boys typically learn more from male teachers and girls typically learn more from female teacher. I don't know how much credit to give this if any. I wish I could remember where I read it.:sorry:
     
  10. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    Male elementary teachers have always impressed me. They were favorites for my own children. I have worked with a few male teachers ... lots of good humor! The good thing about male teachers is, No Cat Fights!!!!
     
  11. imashortcake

    imashortcake Rookie

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    My son had a male student teacher last year in 5th grade and I have to tell you it made a huge difference. My son had a big medical problem but he felt that if he was having problems he was being weak or not a tough boy. This male teacher was able to create a bond with him so that if he was having any problems he felt comfortable going to him and telling him about his medical problems. This was so important to me. I was able to know that if something was wrong he would tell someone so that we could get him to the doctor. I am so thankful for this teacher.

    I hope that helps.
     
  12. JGrizzle

    JGrizzle Rookie

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    Thanks

    Thanks you to everyone who has responded. It is greatly appreciated


    Thanks,
    James
     
  13. Tigers

    Tigers Habitué

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    check out menteach[dot]org
     
  14. MisterG

    MisterG Comrade

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    From my perspective...it is important to have male teachers in the classroom to be a role model. Kids feed off of what they get and if they have female teachers...that is what they are going to get used to. Not saying that is a bad thing, having female teachers, but they also need some balance by having male teachers as well. Im teaching 4th and I think for my students, Im their first male teacher so its different for them. For others it can be a sort of tug of war because kids arent used to having other male authority figures in their lives.
     
  15. dumbdiety

    dumbdiety Comrade

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    I'm a male elementary school teacher, 5th grade. Gotta say, it's a sweet deal for us right now. :)
    The boys in my class, while they give me trouble, all listen to me. It took the girls a while to get used to me, but it's all cool now. The hardest part, really, is that the girls in class may start those monthly problems sometime during the year (I've already had two start), and they are scared to ask a male teacher for help. They all think it's 'cool' that they have a male teacher, though I'm not the first for some of them.
    And as for Danny'sNanny's comment....ya, totally me.....
    I really think it's a 'we think different' approach. We know that boys and girls lear different, and I believe that we teach different also. I'm always moving around my room during lessons, and I've changed my room around so much to try different things that when the kids come in it's like "You moved things AGAIN?!?". If you want more specific thoughts, post 'em here. I'll keep an eye on this thread.

    Doug
     
  16. titansrst

    titansrst Rookie

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    I am a special breed of male teacher, an African-American male teacher, plying my trade in an urban school. This doesn't make me any more important than my colleagues, but it does place a very special importance in my presence.
    Most of my kids don't see their dads, so I am a surrogate father, a position that is both rewarding and frustrating.
    Most of my kids grow up with many problems suburban kids somehow avoid, especially the problems of racisim, extreme low self-esteem and a media that tells them everyday that they are less.
    Most of my boys don't have role models, escept the drug sellers in the street, the foul-mouthed older brothers and cousins they live with or the spoiled, overpaid and overindulged celebrities who best show them the way to not go.
    In my class, my kids learn manners. I am old school and don't apologize for it. My kids call me "Sir" and visitors are equally accorded the same greeting. My kids learn the meanings of please and thank-you. They learn responsibilty and cosequences. Unlike what they view on TV, they learn that being a male doesn't mean being a buffoon, a woman-hater, an irresponsible sperm donor or foul-mouthed, angry underachiever for whom the most important question he will ask is "do you want that supersized? My kids wear school uniforms, the only class in a school of 650 that obeys they uniform rule.
    I am tough on my kids, especially my boys, because I don't want to pick up a newspaper one day in the future and find their names in a police blotter or prison story.
    My kids have seen more than me, living in such a tough neighborhood.
    I can go on and on and on, and I still wouldn't tell half the story. By the way, I also make sure my kids eat two square meals a day (the two for which I am with them at school), have clean clothes and hear nurturing, loving words. Males have hearts too, and my kids need to know this.
     
  17. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    This world needs more like you!
     
  18. Teacher379

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    Some students only get that role model at school...whether it's male or female influence.

    I'm a single parent and I have to say that I was looking forward for my daughter to be in 3rd grade. As a teacher I had the right to ask for a specific teacher at the school, so I placed her in the male teacher's class. Her behavior improved (not that she was too much of a behavior issue), and she looked up to him. I can't wait till next year, when she's in fifth and I place her with another male teacher.

    He was also a teacher that pushed his students to work harder, gave extra homework and even some weekend assignments during the months before the FCAT. Most of his students scored 4 and/or 5 on the test. I'm really glad I chose him for her teacher.
     
  19. Teacher379

    Teacher379 Companion

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    All I have to say is.....WOW!!!
     
  20. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    God bless you, titan.
     
  21. JGrizzle

    JGrizzle Rookie

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    Thanks, once again to all of you who bothered to leave a message..... it is greatly appreciated............. if anyone wants to try, I would like to know some more about how a male elementary teacher impacts the students who come from single parent families... being a child from a single parent family and now becoming a teacher I feel that it is of the upmost importance so any thoughts will be valued .....

    Thanks,
    James
     
  22. ctopher

    ctopher Comrade

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    I'm a male that has taught second grade for the past 8 years and I love it!!! I'm the first male teacher the students are exposed to besides the gym teacher and then there is 1 4th grade teacher that's male. I teach in a rural district with many single parent homes. I'm the only positive male role model many of these kids have in their lives. Some are afraid that first day/week of school because it's new for them (I'm sure it has NOTHING to do with the fact that I'm 6'8" tall! hahahaha) but by the end of that first week we're all laughing and we have a great time together. I can get some students to do things they never would have tried before and to become more socially adjusted people. Many of the boys start the year thinking their these little tough guys but soon they're all racing to line up so they can be first in line, I hold the hand of the first 2 kids in line if they want....the boys want to more than the girls some times. The boys in my class also learn that being a man doesn't always mean beer drinking, sports watching, grunted responses.

    Since men in elementary schools are in the minority be prepared to learn more than you would like to about some of your female coworkers and how their bodies function!!!!!!!!! Be prepared to be the only male at MANY of the workshops you will attend.
     
  23. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    That is too funny, ctopher. You sound like a great (big) teacher!
     
  24. dumbdiety

    dumbdiety Comrade

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    Tell me about it! I've learned more about female 'problems' in the past 3 years than I have in all the years before combined! It doesn't even phase me anymore. We just got a new teacher here, and the others were complaining about female problems at lunch. She kept getting beet red and looking at me like 'Oh my god we're talking about this in front of a guy!'. It was hilarious!
    Also, most of the husbands think I'm the 'boy toy'. :)
     
  25. hatima

    hatima Devotee

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    I had one male teacher in elementary school and he was one of my Favorates, Mr. Warnke in 4th grade. The school had others, and in 5th grade I did have a male reading teacher. In my experience male teachers were scarce in elementary schools, unless they were coaches. I liked having male teachers. Personally I find the male voice to be smoother and easier to listen too. I have always prefered having male teachers. I think Male teachers in elementary school are important, it might help some students better than having a female teacher.
     
  26. Tigers

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    do you believe that because there is so much prejudice against males in the field of teaching, (though this is partially due to a prejudice against women in society), that there is a higher ratio of quality male teachers?
     
  27. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    I don't really think there is prejudice against male teachers.
     
  28. srh

    srh Devotee

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    The male teachers in my school are revered!

    My teaching partner is male (Kinder), and I have to admit, I wondered just how that would turn out! (It's great!) But I've always had lots of guy friends, and I LOVE the different perspective on things. He is not bothered by some of the petty things that drive me crazy....he has a booming voice that is very helpful while he's supervising my recess...but mostly, he is just a great guy for our little folks to observe as a role model. Some of them desperately need that. Moms seem to hang around most of the time--dads, not so much.

    I also student taught with a male fifth grade teacher. He totally blew away all my previous ideas about male teachers in elementary. He was smart, sharp, and very personable with students, which meant he wielded much influence with them. Guys who really try seem to have even more positive influence than their female colleagues. Maybe not, but it's been my observation! So guys, BE A GOOD ONE!! :-D
     
  29. Tigers

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    I admit that the prejudices decrease with age but to believe they aren't there is interesting to say the least. Well, let's put the question to the board....Do you believe there are prejudices against male teachers? I would be particularly interested in hearing from lower grade and preschool men.
     
  30. halpey1

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    I too am a male 2nd grade teacher - the kids love it... I get more waves in the hallway from kids I don't even know! It's a big gimmick - but I say you can use it to your advantage. Whether it's fair or not (it's not) many students will treat a male teacher very differently. I have a few kids who were major behavior issues in the past, and I have absolutely no trouble with them. Plus, the boys can really identify with you - which they need so desperately. I have one little guy this year who has a writing phobia. I've worked very hard with him, and through lots of modeling and praise, he's becoming a writer. These kids (both the boys and girls) need to see that men can be good readers and writers. Best of luck! :D
     
  31. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Again, this is from a female perspective, but I have never seen any prejudice against male teachers. We have a lot of male teachers on staff and there are a lot of male elementary teachers in my board. Workshops and training sessions that I attend are probably 2/3 women to 1/3 men. I do find that there is a greater assumption that male teachers will go into administration, that classroom teaching is a stepping stone for them.
     
  32. ctopher

    ctopher Comrade

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    I don't think prejudices is the right word.....being male can work to a teacher's favor when job hunting for elementary, but maybe the word you're looking for is stereotypes?? There are definately male elem. teacher stereotypes!!!
     
  33. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    Here's an article on research stating that boys learn better from male teachers, and girls learn better from female teachers:
    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14546994/

    It is based on studies of eighth-graders, where, they say, gender gaps emerge.

    Regarding prejudice... for some reason male preschool and early elementary teachers raise the hackles of some people. It is a real statement on the worldview that working with children isn't valuable work. Note the pay - when I worked with men in the men's corporate world I made 300% more money than I will as a teacher. My job was creating demand for internet servers. More important than teaching? Apparently. :confused: The other side of this coin is that since it's not seen as a valuable and important job, just why would a man want to be around little kids all day. Either he is dim, or worse. I think this is both a prejudice and a stereotype, and unfortunate and damaging.
     
  34. Tigers

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    In california state public schools, a male teacher must have another teacher or aide present if they take a girl in the hallway to discuss behavior. a female teacher may escort a boy solo anytime she pleases. Now, I know that it is good policy never to be alone with a child but, why not ask the same standards of both sexes?

    Female teachers in preschool change diapers and take children to the bathroom. Now, male preschool teachers do this also, but issues are raised time and again by parents who...well if that isn't prejudice I don't know what is.

    People often trust males less with children.

    Teacher's get substandard pay. For a professional career, this is surprising. But, since our wages are paid by taxpayers, and teaching is considered a woman's job (not profession) by many, and women only supply a supplemental income to a household (The man brings home the bacon), there is no reason to give them better wages.

    This comes from questioning "why would a man teach little kids? That's a woman's job." This opinion is still alive and well today, so to those of you who don't acknowledge the prejudice I would suggest you look again.

    Let's not even begin to discuss the female teachers that have pretty much got off the hook and recieved much notoriety, for raping thier male students.
     
  35. srh

    srh Devotee

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    Tigers--are you sure that's a LAW about talking to a student in the hallway??
     
  36. Tigers

    Tigers Habitué

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    I am only familiar with what has been relayed between districts where I have worked. I will look into where it is written down. and write back to you.
     
  37. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    At my kids' co-op preschool, two parents have to go when they take a child to the bathroom (unless it is the parent's own child). The exception is the teacher and director are licensed and may take children alone to the bathroom.

    That is so wierd. Why just a male teacher? And why only a girl student? :confused:
     
  38. RMorton

    RMorton New Member

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    As a midlife career changer who is about to intern in an exceptional early childhood classroom (Special Ed. major) I will say that the stigma of a man in a young child's class is still out there, but fortunately for me it appears to be outside the school. The teacher I am going to intern with, as well as her principal, thinks it's wonderful that a man would have an interest, and yes, they also think that there are a lot of good qualities that men have that can be positive for our youngsters, too.

    I am fascinated with early childhood development, and find it challenging in my area of specialization to be able to observe and work with a developing child to try and determine if their "issues" are only developmental or if they truly do have a disability. To have a special ed. student farther down the pike in school years is no fun for me - if I taught higher grades in elementary or middle school the work has been done. I would rather be on the ground floor and in a position to intervene so that they can be successful students as they grow older.

    Certainly there are areas that may cause concerns, but with a female aid in the room I think those can be easily dealt with.

    As for being the only male in a female dominated job, fine with me! I love women! *grin* I have worked in the schools for a while, so being the only male on a campus is nothing new to me. I will say that after faculty meetings or the end of the day I never have to wait in line for the restroom. . .

    RM
     
  39. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Unless I'm ahead of you...I don't pay attention to the little signs on the doors in our staffroom washrooms.:D (One "cubicle" for each)
     
  40. MortonR

    MortonR Rookie

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    Heh.

    I'm in a new Title 1 school this year, so they have unisex restrooms. The last 6 years I worked in an older school that had gender-specific restrooms. . . I never had to worry about a crowd there, since I was one of three males on campus.

    And yes, I put the seat down when I'm done AND I replace the toilet paper roll when it's empty. My folks brought me up right.

    *grin*:D

    RM
     
  41. MortonR

    MortonR Rookie

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    One more thing. . .

    As for the comments from the men about "female problems," I have learned a very important lesson working around women for many years:

    Never bring up childbirth, and if someone starts talking about it, excuse yourself.

    :)

    I have two children myself, and was a stay-at-home Dad for a number of years, so I'm not a stranger to the topic. However, for those guys out there who have not worked in a female-dominated environment, this is a topic that always seems to elicit extensive conversation, much of which involves subjects that are rather graphic and personal. Doesn't bother me (one of my teachers refers to me as her "girlfriend") but for those unfamiliar with the territory or uncomfortable with such talk it may be unsettling.

    I had a great time as "one of the girls" in the neighborhood, PTA, work, etc., so I became pretty desensitized to the discussions. However, I can understand where some guys might not feel comfortable about it. . .

    RM
     
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