Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by Kenz501, Dec 2, 2017.
Dec 9, 2017
I suggest you look up the countless threads authored by OP.
Kenz reminds me a whole lot of another poster, with a four letter name, who I don't recall seeing around in quite a while, who had similar issues. I'm not sure if that poster ever ended up finding a job as most of his/her posts were about how unfair it was that they were never hired after the interview. I'm sure some of you know who I am talking about.
I teach grade 7. All subjects except for Phys Ed, Music and French. I do have a couple of ESL students, as well as a couple with LDs, but it's a "regular" class with 26 students and no ELL or Special Ed support. The literacy objectives are quite complex, but far too lengthy to post here--I haven't counted, but probably over 200 when looking at all 4 strands of Literacy that I cover (Reading, Writing, Media Literacy, and Oral Communication).
I was honestly trying to give you some specific, concrete help, by showing how I think about teaching it all.
I owe almost $150,000 for about seven or eight years of college, related living expenses, and penalty fees. How? I could have met my needs in more frugal ways, I'm pretty sure. It just never crossed my mind to do so. I wasn't trying to dig myself into a mound of debt, but that is what happened. I was convinced that going to college was the only thing I could do well, so I took an extremely low paying job as an emergency substitute teacher, got beaten up emotionally by snarky little middle school students, and sacrificed a few opportunities to work, in favor of more classes and unpaid internships to finish my degree, and, rather than seeing the handwriting on the wall, told myself that it would get better as I got more experience and learned what I was supposed to be doing. I didn't really have any confidence that I could find a job that I could actually live off of, so I kept going to college and living off of what was left over. I kept this up for around seven or eight years.
I didn't know it at the time, but I borrowed a private loan, not just federal loans, and the terms on that one were different. I didn't know that filling out a FAFSA could even result in a private student loan. I really should have done my research.
At least I gave it a fair shot. Before, I saw not only myself failing but my coworkers as well, so I could blame the environment. Here, I can't do that. I see that I clearly have trouble doing something that I'm supposed to be able to do. Maybe it has to do with how I come off to the kids. I don't look like an authoritarian. In fact, I try not to be mean because I remember my own school experience. There were times when our teachers yelled at us so much that we felt like we were in prison. I think this career choice was potentially liberating. At least they've learned from their mistakes and aren't going to treat the next generation like a bunch of prisoners. It's also disappointing, though, because I NEVER had these kinds of opportunities as a kid. In fact, I was afraid to talk to my teachers until I graduated. The sensation of being a nonperson stays with you for years and years. I look back at those times with both nostalgia and anger, or at least annoyance. I wasn't on the "college prep track," because that was something special, not for just anyone, and it required a whole lot more work and ridicule than I wanted to sit through.
I found out there was also an honors program at the university I attended, too. I didn't really understand that. I know that maybe a lot of colleges have them, but in high school, "honors" meant "college prep," didn't it? What did "honors" mean in college?
Oh my goodness, 150K?! You’ll never pay that off in less than 10 years. How are you going to buy a house or start a family? I’m very worried for you because that amount is just stifling. I really think you should look at working at the best paying districts because if you make $30,000-$40,000 or less then I don’t see you having much of a life.
All good advice. I guess I'll start there.
I can't do that because I don't have enough experience to know what works and what doesn't. How is it not reasonable to ask for a script? Think about a computer program and digital interactive learning; those all follow scripts, and technology components are requirements in most lesson plans. Good scripts aren't bad things. In fact, I think our dependency on technology shows us that they can actually enhance learning.
Well, I don't think it will be much longer until teaching is taken over by adaptable computer programs, anyway, but no I wouldn't want my kids being taught by someone who can't respond to them emotionally and connect with them. That's the aspect of teaching a robot can't replicate. That's why I feel like I need a script. I need to be able to bring that 10 percent extra which is my own personality. Right now, it's buried in insecurity--is this lesson I prepared any good, probably not?
Emotion isn't scripted, but you need more than emotion to do a good job. You stated that you were yelled out as a student. Well, that is emotion, but not the warm fuzzy kind.
This is just so terribly offensive. I can't even imagine how you think that teaching students another language, including all the literacy skills you'd expect to see in a regular English class, is easier. By even suggesting this, you're completely minimizing all the hard work that teachers in all those areas (English, ESL, foreign language) are doing. And quite frankly, with all the self-created struggles you've been describing around these parts, it's laughable that you're calling any subject "easier" than another. When you've got a handle on any one of them, I might be more willing to accept your opinion on which subject may be easier to teach than another.
You're worried about the "10 percent extra" when you're struggling to take attendance on time? Focus on the first 100% before you worry about anything extra. Heck, focus on the first 75%.
I couldn't fathom having a script. It makes no sense to me. If it were just a matter of following a script, why not just may someone $20/hr to do it, and call it a day? You are getting experience now to know what works and what doesn't to help make you a better professional! That's what this is all about!!!
So tell me, from lessons you've taught in September through November, what has worked and what has not worked? What will you change about those lessons next year and what will stay the same? This is all part of being a reflective practicioner. You've received more help in this thread than I did my entire first year of teaching. Yes, it was hard. Yes, there were a few days I questioned if it was really what I wanted to do. BUT, five years later, I love it, and couldn't imagine any other job.
And I also wouldn't sweat too much about technology until you get the basics down pat.
Sorry, I'll go back and look at your other post again, but it looked like good advice.
I'm sorry, but your posts are so frustrating to read. If you truly believed this, why would you even pursue teaching in the first place? You are correct that a robot can't replicate emotion, but a script can't either.
Get. Over. It.
I went to school to learn to teach a "less-commonly taught foreign language". I was the only student in my university of 40,000 students studying to teach that language. All my Ed classes were focused either on teaching in general or teaching more common foreign language. I found it very challenging to get a lot of out of the foreign language teaching classes because much of the focus was on stuff that I couldn't do and lessons that wouldn't work for me. I made the most of it, though, because that was within my control. When I took my first job at a high school, I really had to work at creating lessons that would reach my students. I had no canned curriculum and had to find or create almost all my materials myself. It was a lot of work and took time, but I did it. My students learned stuff. I consider that a success.
Why are you so focused on what happened in the past? Why can't you move forward and figure things out?
Ouch. Yes, teaching foreign language is easier because the textbooks are scripted; well, at least where I was. Just plain old ESL is easier to teach than English, because the lesson plan book is scripted, or at least it was where I taught. Also, teaching math is easier, for the same reason. That's why I prefer teaching grammar over teaching reading; it's not as complex, and it's not something that people just assume you can teach because you know it yourself.
No new teacher has enough experience to know what works and what doesn't. How do you think they learn? They try. Sometimes they fail, sometimes they succeed. Usually they do a little of both and get some ideas about how to be better next time. This is the nature of teaching, and it happens throughout a teacher's entire career. There is no magic point at which a teacher magically knows how to teach everything right the first time to every student.
OP, I couldn't help but notice how you skipped over the post about using your benefits to get professional help.
Because if you feel like you lack competence, you are going to shut yourself off. If you have a script to help you at least appear competent, you'll be more open.
I may need a teaching life coach...
So you chose to teach what you view as a harder subject to teach because......??????
You mean you need a life coach so that you can communicate better and get organized, but you missed one of the points - a life coach can't help with the depression.
It was easier to get a degree in it, and I didn't really find out how difficult it was to teach ELA until I started trying to teach ELA. For me, grammar, vocabulary, and sentence structure are much easier to teach than reading, because I know what to focus on.
It might be different for lesser taught languages; I don't know.
For the record, the facepalm this caused hurt.
If that is true, then you have been making flawed judgments for a very long time. How did you get passing grades in this stuff in college?
If you don't think that grammar is complex, I feel like perhaps you don't actually understand grammar all that deeply.
And, I mean, you know that those ESL and foreign language teachers aren't just teaching grammar, right? They're teaching reading and writing skills, just like the English teacher is teaching, except that they are teaching non-native speakers how to read and write in a language that is unfamiliar to them (the students).
It might be different at the advanced levels. I'm talking about little lessons for kids at the youth center and ESL to refugees through a private organization. You could probably consider it more tutoring than teaching. I'm really a better tutor than teacher, I think, because all a tutor has to do is find the problems the kid has learning material that has already been selected by a teacher.
Oh, I'm sure you don't know. I suspect that you're fairly ignorant about a lot of what happens in the world of education, based on your posts here. Par for the course.
Sorry if I'm not really understanding the question. The stuff in college was straight-forward, but it was just content knowledge, literary analysis, papers, theories, tests, etc., no real world application, except to a limited degree during student teaching.
So you decided that since you are only educated/qualified to be a tutor, you should be the teacher?
Someone had to notice your deficits.
Okay, as someone who has barely taught you do not get to speak about the ease of other subjects.
I teach mathematics and work VERY hard in my day to day. I use manipulatives like partitioned cross sections to model Riemann sums, I use GeoGebra, Kahoot, and a myriad of other interactive software to make engaging lessons, I have my students do project-based learning and problem-based learning exercises, I have them use graphing calculators to do games and simulations in AP Statistics, I have them conduct surveys for statistics projects, as well as use klinometers to measure angles and estimate heights of buildings and trees and such, etc.
A lot of planning went into my lessons and I strive to include videos and games to make learning mathematics fun. It is very hard work, so please don’t stereotype us math teachers as having easier jobs. I’d like to see you teach all of my math courses (Financial Math, Advanced Pre-Algebra, Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2, Pre-Calculus, AP Calculus AB/BC, and AP Statistics). I’d like to see you come up with mathematics proofs on the fly for every theorem, corollary, lemma, and formula. Id like to see you write computer programs to run repeated trials and collect data. I’d like to see you deal with students with several different brands of calculators and having to learn how to work with each and spot students’ mistakes. I’d like to see you get students who are below grade level to understand complex mathematics.
Just try it and see how easy it is.
I have a teaching license, just little experience or good training.
If no one ever noticed that you can't, in reality, teach, then I feel for Texas. Your colleagues didn't sign up to teach a college graduate, and it isn't in their job description.
Wow. Impressive, but did your own teachers use an overhead projector, pages from the textbook, and internet videos? Did they tell you to just "search online and see what you find." If so, you probably understand, because you had to look for all of those resources and really dig to figure out what would work and how to go beyond that. I'm still trying to learn how to add to the methods that were used to teach me---mainly power point, online videos, and lectures, and, yes, it does seem nearly impossible to get up to the level of the more experienced teachers on my hall without help, and it doesn't help that teachers who are younger than me are somehow able to do more with what they have.
And still you have missed the point - your colleagues should be able to assume that you are at a certain level of proficiency. They have their hands full teaching their classes of MS students. Whether you want to hear it or not, you should have come with some skills or been able to pick them up in a reasonable time.