Moving Grade Levels

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by TXowl, Feb 10, 2014.

  1. TXowl

    TXowl Companion

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    Feb 10, 2014

    I'm currently teaching 6th and 8th grade at a junior high. This is my first year at the junior high level, and I hate it! I moved up because I thought I needed some secondary experience to get a high school job, but I remembered why I went elementary in the first place. I've been helping our resource teacher plan math and reading lessons for her kids (who range from 1st to 4th grade reading levels) and love it. I have taught 3rd, 4th, and 5th before making the move to junior high. I student taught in 1st and 3rd and at the time preferred 3rd.

    My question is do you think principals will even consider me for primary k-2 positions? I'm certified EC-4 generalist, 4-8 generalist, and 8-12 social studies. I always thought I wanted to teach high school history and government, but after the last few years, I've fallen in love with teaching reading/literacy. I'd like to try for 1st and 2nd grade jobs, but I'm worried that with the testing culture I have been pigeon-holed as a "testing grade" teacher. What do you think? Anyone in Texas who has some experience with this? I've heard 2nd grade is really hard to get because of the lack of testing.
     
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  3. Luv2TeachInTX

    Luv2TeachInTX Comrade

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    Feb 11, 2014

    It sounds like you like resource. Maybe try getting your special ed cert?
     
  4. ayla

    ayla Companion

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    Feb 12, 2014

    I just moved from elementary to high school... Middle school was my student teaching and it was just depressing. I like high school more because the kids are more independent. I found I don't really care what content I teach. Eventually I will likely be put into the remedial math position at my high school because of my strong background with lower level math. I would like that. I agree you would probably like remedial positions because the kids are older but the content is younger.

    At my old elem school, teachers were put into 2nd grade when they did a bad job in another grade (1st grade was considered a crucial year because of the reading skills being learned). So in that sense they never interviewed for 2nd grade because it was the place you went when you could not be successful in a testing grade or in 1st grade. Kindergarten is its own beast.

    I think if you had some ongoing experience in 1st, for example I teach religious school to 2nd graders on the weekend to keep my elementary "cred" going, then it might help your case.
     
  5. DHE

    DHE Connoisseur

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    Feb 12, 2014

    I am so glad that 2nd grade is treated like this in our district/school. Second grade is treated as a crucial year because we have to prepare students for third grade, which is a testing grade. Much of our curriculum emulates third grade and everything that is done with third through fifth is done with us. For instance, we take six-weeks assessments just like third through fifth, we write the reports that they have to do and retest on the deficient skills. We are given the areas that have a gap between second and third and we must fill in those gaps.

    I've taught both first and second; I like 2nd because they are a little more independent than 1st graders. In our district, if we are certified in the area, we will be considered to teach on that level. I wish you much success!
     
  6. TXowl

    TXowl Companion

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    Feb 12, 2014

    I don't really like resource. It's just that I like the material, which is much lower than what I'm currently teaching. I would love to do special ed if Texas would let you specialize in a particular type. I would probably enjoy elementary resource or working with autistic students (I nannied for a child with autism and had several students with autism in my student teaching). However, I know that I would not be happy or do well in a life skills, ABU, or content mastery setting. I'm afraid of adding the sped certification because then a district could move me into any sped position, which in some of the districts around here, could be those that I wouldn't feel comfortable doing.
     
  7. TXowl

    TXowl Companion

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    Feb 12, 2014

    I feel like the reason I'm interested in the younger grades is that I've done so much with balanced literacy and really enjoy it. I've tried running a workshop style class in my current position, but nobody else is on board (despite what I was told in my interview) and there aren't many resources available. I have ZERO leveled readers available to me even though I really need them. My 6th and 8th graders range from 2nd grade to 10th grade reading levels. However, with STAAR, I'm being pushed into a test prep mode where we do tons of practice passages, which I despise because it makes my kids hate to read even more than they already do. I'm doing the 40 book challenge from The Book Whisperer, but my kids aren't really getting as much from it because we lose time for all the testing junk I'm being forced to do with them. In my experience, the workshop model is the default for most elementary schools, so I'd like to go back to elementary and have the resources and support to teach the way I think works best for kids (workshop).
     
  8. AdamnJakesMommy

    AdamnJakesMommy Habitué

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    Feb 12, 2014

    Too bad you aren't where I am, I'd swap you! I've got the opposite problem--in elementary but want to go back to middle. I can't stomach another year unless I have no other choice... I've come to the conclusion I need to be where I'm the most effective and happy...
     

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