Student Teaching & Still Unsure

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by amethyst, Dec 27, 2013.

  1. amethyst

    amethyst Companion

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    Dec 27, 2013

    I have one semester to go and I'm on track to graduate in May with my Master's in Teaching and dual certs in Preschool-3rd and Special Ed. I've had doubts about teaching all the way through my program, in fact it took about 3 yrs to even decide on what to my grad program in :( If it were not for financial problems, I probably wouldn't be as stressed out about at least making it through one more semester, but I know student teaching is hard, and I'm really worried about making it through if I feel like my heart isn't even 100% in it AND I'm constantly stressed out about money. I mean, literally right now, we have nothing. I have NO clothes for student teaching, no bills paid, and it's hard even finding the money to buy food. It's bad. My husband makes money in the summer landscaping, but in the winter, he barely makes anything, and I didn't work last semester, because I had 3 classes on top of student teaching p/t. I just started subbing as soon as classes ended, but won't be able to make much before I go back to school. I don't know what I'd do permanently, but I have thought about seeing if I could postpone my last semester, and sub for now, so I could at least make some money right now, and maybe save some.

    What do you think? I am so stressed and tired of being stressed. And subbing is pretty stressful, too. And the thought of teaching and doing lesson plans and having NO money and all the stress like now, just stresssssssses me out. I don't know how much more I can take!
     
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  3. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    Dec 27, 2013

    If you AND your husband are both effectively unemployed, then... yeah, that's going to be very difficult for you. Are either of you in a situation where family could help out for five months? If not, I think one of you two will need to bite the bullet and get a job doing whatever until the other is ready to start their real career.

    One thing I'll say is that a lot of the teachers I went to school with got cold feet at this point in the program. It's intimidating. You're finishing your Master's Thesis, you're thinking about student teaching, and the idea that in a few months, you could actually be trusted with providing the education for a group of children, with everything that entails. It's scary, and it's normal to be scared. This probably isn't the advice you want to hear, but at this point, you're too far along to back out. Even if you get to the end and realize that teaching absolutely isn't for you, you'll be better off with a Master's in hand than with a Bachelor's and part of a Master's. Go into it with positive thoughts, and be the best student teacher you possibly can be for those kids. If you get to the end and it's not for you, then at least you'll have the experience, and there are always career opportunities for teachers out there.
     
  4. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    Dec 28, 2013

    Can you get a student loan? Don't be embarrassed to ask for help. My DD went to school on a student loan. She went to a food bank for food. She accessed clothing closets for interview clothes. Search the internet for social service agencies in your area--that is what they are for. Tell your college advisor that you need help. I guarantee that you will not be the first one to ask for help. No one knows that you need help unless you ask for it.
     
  5. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Dec 28, 2013

    I'm sorry about your situation! Were either of you ever able to get unemployment benefits? Try your best NOT to postpone school since all you have it one semester. Can the parents of either you and/or your husband help you out a bit financially?

    I'm starting my last yr of grad school & my heart has gradually been less & less in it since the summer of 2012 since I've been going to school forever. I didn't do well in my last pair of classes, so I'm sure I'll have longer than a year left now. I'd drop out of the whole thing if it weren't for already having been in it more than 1/2 of the time plus having to repay the student loan would then be a huge waste of $!
     
  6. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Dec 28, 2013

    It seems to me that the first priority is getting food on the table and paying your bills.

    Can your husband find some sort of work until the spring Landscaping business picks up? Can he do handyman type of work? I imagine that there are lots of people in NJ, like those on Long Island, who still have lots and lots and lots of work needing to be done in their homes; not all requires a professional license. Can he paint? Install drywall? Do any of that sort of things to help in the Sandy recovery? I imagine there's still lots of work for all sorts of those types of jobs.

    In your shoes, I would defer student teaching for at least a semester, and get a job, get some money in the bank, and ease the stress of day to day living.

    For what it's worth, everyone I knew worked at least part time while student teaching-- I waitressed 4 or 5 nights a week. It's absolutely do-able.

    But I would ensure that the basics of life were paid for first.
     
  7. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Dec 28, 2013

    I wouldn't student teach with that much financial strain. Is there any work your husband can find? I got through student teaching with a combination of my husband working and my student loans. (We live in a *very* high COL area, so one income didn't cut it.) Yes, we are now in debt, but I really couldn't have made it through without the loans, and the school I used the loans for got me a job...so....

    Student teaching is extremely stressful, and you really don't want to have that stress on top of financial stress. Also, I think your life stresses may be coloring your opinion of teaching as a whole. It's very common to get cold feet and second guess your career choice at this point. I actually wasn't a huge fan of student teaching in general, but I *love* my job now. It's an extremely different experience than actually having your own classroom.
     
  8. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    Dec 28, 2013

    Student teaching IS hard and stressful and you have to give 150 %. That's even harder if you're worried and stressed out about personal things, and worrying about money can really weigh you down. You don't want to fail your student teaching or make a bad impression on the school, so you might want to postpone it one semester.

    1. you can postpone student teaching 1 semester and sub in the meanwhile. This way you're still in the field of education, in the classroom and you're gaining experience. This will help you with student teaching, will look good on your resume and you will make money.
    I would suggest to sub and not get a job in other non-education fields. Also make sure you only postpone your student teaching 1 semester and then you get back on. If you keep putting it off, 1 semester will be 2 and then 3 years later you'll be wondering what happened.
    Subbing can help you get your foot in the door at several schools. Let's be realistic, when you graduate and have your credential, it doesn't mean you'll get hired right away, you might need to sub for a year, or even more. You'll want to have contacts to be able to sub every day and make money and not be stressed out all over again.

    2. could you still take your Master's classes if you postpone your student teaching? Taking grad classes, finishing a thesis and student teaching is already hard (I did that), and it's even more of a burden in your situation. If you could get your grad courses done, you'll have one less thing to worry about in the fall when you complete s. teaching.

    3. Student loans. This is why student loans are there, so you can go to school and concentrate on getting your degree without being stressed out. I would definitely look into that and continue student teaching. This would be my first suggestion actually.
     

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