Student Teaching vs "Real" Teaching

Discussion in 'General Education' started by miss-m, Nov 3, 2014.

  1. miss-m

    miss-m Devotee

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    Nov 3, 2014

    My student teaching experience was very different from my experiences subbing (subbing is SO MUCH FUN, but student teaching made me absolutely hate teaching). Obviously subbing is still not even close to being a full time teacher since I don't have to write plans or track student progress/data... but I'm curious:

    How did your student teaching differ from teaching on your own? What was the biggest difference (for better or worse)?
     
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  3. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    One major difference that I gradually realized, though this neglects the millions of other differences, was that with student teaching, there was always that party there you were running ideas by or that was providing you with some ideas. While I will still occasionally run ideas past colleagues and vice versa, full time requires that you have the confidence to run with your ideas. You also have to have significantly established the ability to self-assess and know what went well, what didn't go well, etc..., as observations are occasional at best instead of every waking second ;)

    Just a couple differences (ha, not one like I started with) that might not be mentioned
     
  4. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    Student teaching was not very different than "real" teaching for me my first year teaching. At both assignments I was given lesson plans to copy if I chose. I had great support from other teachers and I had pretty good classroom management. Things have gotten better with more experience, of course.
     
  5. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    As a teacher, I have more control over certain little things (what attention grabbing signals will I use? what will classroom procedures be? how will I arrange desks?). However, I did think I would have more freedom than what I currently have as a teacher. My admin loves to micromanage everything, so actually, there isn't as big of a difference as I had initially expected between the two. There is a lot of collaboration forced upon us, so I have very little freedom with what and how I teach. Actually, I think I was more free to edit daily lessons and schedules as a student teacher than I am now!

    I like that I get paid, versus working for free as a student teacher. :love:
     
  6. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    I absolutely loved one of my two student teaching placements. My second placement was in a HS in a very wealthy county in TN and it was i-freaking-deal. I loved it; the kids, co-workers, the district, the classes I taught. Even my mentor/co-op teacher was super hot ...:lol: All of it made me excited to be able to get my own classroom and teach.

    It was nothing at all like teaching in Baltimore City; my teaching reality leaves a lot to be desired.
     
  7. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    SO different.

    I had great mentor teachers, but actually having my own class is SO different from student teaching. I have control. I can try out what works, I can be creative. I can research and do things the way I want. I always felt like student teaching was awkward. I didn't have the final say in anything. I never truly felt like a part of the teaching staff (because I wasn't!). It's just...not as good as teaching.

    I like teaching about a billion times better than I liked student teaching.
     
  8. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    I think one of the biggest differences is that I didn't have to deal with any of the paper work (IEP's, goal-setting for teachers, etc.) when I was student teaching. I could actually focus on teaching, which was nice.
     
  9. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Yes, this is a HUGE difference!

    Teachers are responsible for a ton of paperwork. Grades, IEPs, goal-setting, testing... I did some of that as a student teacher, but the teacher is still ultimately responsible for those things.
     
  10. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    My cooperating teacher never left the room and I never gained a full understanding of how to really RUN a class. Subbing was much more my training ground. By the time I was in my second year of subbing, my classroom management was well-known and accepted by any student who came into the room. "It's Mrs. Fiddle. She's cool, but she has rules!"
     
  11. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    I'm the exact opposite of you... I loved student teaching, and despised subbing.

    The biggest difference is the paperwork. No matter how involved a student teacher you were, you don't get a full grasp on just how involved (and occasionally asinine) the paperwork actually is.
     
  12. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    I had the opposite experience...I found that student teaching was far more "meaningless paperwork" (my opinion of most of our assignments). Becoming a "real" teacher freed me of so much busy work! I had to write insanely detailed plans for every lesson. If you're familiar with Madeline Hunter, that's close to the format we used, but ours was even longer. A single lesson was 4-5 pages, times at least 5 lessons per day, and my student teaching placement lasted almost a full school year. We also had to write a journal entry of at least 1-2 pages every day, as well as a one page reflection of every lesson (so times 5) per day detailing how the students reacted to the lesson and what we might do differently. I used to spend 20+ hours per week doing lesson plans alone, and it would take me 1-2 hours on Sunday night just to print, sort, and organize all of my papers into my lesson plan binder. Then of course we had other projects and assignments on top of that including numerous portfolios and a thesis. Luckily I had an amazing CT, but I also hated the feeling of constantly being watched/evaluated all day every day and knowing that a bad ST experience could ruin my career before it even started. The next year as a "real" teacher I felt I had about 10x less work, less stress, and more freedom.
     
  13. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

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    Student teaching always has a safety net. There is a CT who is ultimately in control of what happens in the classroom. As a student teacher you get to fully focus on teaching. There are no other professional responsibilities outside of your ST unless you choose to participate. I went to staff meetings, did recess duty and went to PD with my CT. But I did not write report cards, meet with parents, manage IEPs, etc.

    Subbing was a great experience for me because I got to run the class for the day, but then leave and never look back if I didn't want to.

    My 1st year teaching was a bit overwhelming because all those safety nets were gone. Luckily I had super supportive colleagues who weren't going to let me fail.
     
  14. miss-m

    miss-m Devotee

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    I feel like that's how my CT was -- I got the impression she never *fully* trusted me to take over, so the only days I really felt like a teacher were the days she was gone, and even then there was a sub to keep that extra adult presence in the room (even though I was teaching). Being a sub is definitely revealing what I still need to work on with classroom management, though it's also making me feel a lot better about what I learned in college because I see things being taught in less-than-effective ways haha.


    SAME! Our plans didn't have to be quite so intense, but they still had to be fairly detailed and that on top of extra schoolwork was exhausting. Getting my TWS done was the BEST feeling ever (well... second best. Graduating was pretty awesome haha).
     
  15. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    When I student taught my mentor teacher really didn´t let me teach...only on the days when I was being observed by my university supervisor. So, student teaching was essentially being an aide to the mentor teacher. Very, very different from running my own class. Also, I could go home at the end of the day and be done. Now I am never done! lol
     
  16. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Why do you hate student teaching?

    For me my student teaching experience was not very similar to my teaching experiences, because I taught a different content, and such. Also the parts of my student teaching, where I just had to sit there and watch the teacher which was BORING.

    When I was teaching it was okay. My master teacher wasn't that great though. And I only did half the student teaching I needed to and the other half I did intern teaching so I just kinda jumped in there and taught.
     
  17. miss-m

    miss-m Devotee

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    I didn't enjoy my student teaching because of personality differences between my CT and me. It never felt like my class, even though I taught almost half the year on my own (it was a full year placement). There were just lots of things that made it less than stellar, and the amount of work between planning and school work was overwhelming. I was just constantly stressed and overwhelmed, and I didn't feel very supported by my CT or professors at school. So yeah. Just lots of things that made it a negative experience.

    I love subbing though -- I love that I can choose when (and sort of where) I work, I can leave work AT work, and I get to experience all different grades and age groups.
     
  18. SF_Giants66

    SF_Giants66 Cohort

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    Nov 6, 2014

    For me, that difference will be probably over 20 thousand dollars. Getting paid as a teacher in comparison to paying to be a teacher (12 credit hours).
     
  19. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

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    Well, I'm not sure you're going to enjoy having your own classroom. There is lots of school work, on top of planning. And you definitely don't get to choose when you work, including before/after school meetings, and evening school events.
     
  20. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Your ability to leave work at work will largely depend on a number of things: your skill in time-management, the amount of prepared materials you have, and your experience in teaching.

    Your first few years, you are probably going to hate worse than your student teaching. If you get good at it, it might get better if you work at those things I mentioned.

    I still have trouble leaving work at work and constantly have to take home work and planning, but it's a lot better than my first year.
     

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