Discussion in 'High School' started by pommom, Aug 17, 2015.
Aug 17, 2015
I look REALLY young (28 and could pass for 19), but I've never had a hard time getting hired, except right out of college, but that was due to lack of jobs and inexperience more than my appearance I am sure. Most newer teachers starting out look young, so I think it's a non-issue.
Please don't take this the wrong way, but if looking young is all you have to worry about, then you really have nothing to worry about. I am thinking, as a more mature teacher, that your comments are insulting to those of us in no danger of being mistaken for a student. Having worked in high schools, I can assure you that looking young never seems to be an issue in the hiring process. Enjoy that look for as long as nature is kind to you.
We have a few teachers who could pass for high school. The kids don't focus on that. They judge you by your demeanor, your confidence and your sense of authority. If you own the room, it won't matter how young you look.
I'm ~30 but look younger than many--if not most--high schoolers. During all of my HS field experiences I was asked for my hall pass by staff and by students if I was the "new kid." I resolved to teach middle school, loved student-teaching it, and was expecting grade 6-8. Then only calls from high schools came. I decided to assume an air of confidence during my very first interview. My youthful look didn't seem to phase my principal and he offered me the job on the spot.
I was in my early 20s when I started teaching and at the time, I totally looked like a teenager. I am so not offended by age-related questions though, personally. In fact, I am finding it a relief to be at the age at last where I feel like I don't have to "act" or "dress" more maturely to look professional!
We have some new hires starting who look like teenagers to me...maybe not like HS students, but college-aged for sure. The ones I'm thinking of are actually male, too, so it's not just a female issue. I saw one guy across the corridor and wasn't sure if he was a teacher or student. (And I should also admit that I really do need to start wearing glasses for distance!!).
So I guess I'm trying to say...don't let your appearances stop you from giving it a shot. Just be prepared to dress and act professionally, even more so than your colleagues, at first.
My second year (at the same school) teaching seniors, the assistant principal scolded me for being in the hall during class.:lol:
I was 23. He thought I was a student. I was heading to the lounge on planning. :thumb:
It was never an issue otherwise.
While I know that some people do have a youthful look, the way you style your hair, the makeup you wear, the clothes you wear, and the manner in which you carry yourself makes all the difference. Focus on being the adult, not worrying about who you look younger than.
Well said. Time has a way of getting even if there is enough of it!
I have my high school certification for English. When I was 21 and was mistaken for a junior high student on more than one occasion, I was offered interviews at job fairs for secondary positions. I didn't go on the interviews since I didn't want high school, but it doesn't seem I'd have gotten any interest if young looks was a factor.
Aug 27, 2015
Dress smart and set the tone with your behavior, you can really hurt yourself by being "the cool young teacher".
Be professional, you can loosen up later.
Sep 8, 2015
I'm 27 & teach high school and look like a student. From far away APs and principals are always asking me for my pass or to get to class lmao until they realize it's me.
And new students who don't know me are always asking their friends (thinking they are being quiet)- "she's a teacher?!"
Not really a big deal, and I don't think it affected me getting a job offer at all. I think it actually may have helped since I don't fit a traditional teacher stereotype. I try to be pretty strict, dress professionally as much as possible, and set high expectations so kids don't think I'm their fun buddy.
Jun 22, 2016
Your disposition and command of respect is not age dependent.
Sep 26, 2016
Sep 27, 2016
I was yelled at by a hall monitor when I subbed in a high school once (I was 22 or 23 at the time). She thought I was a student. That only happened once though. I still look young (I'm 40 and was carded when buying wine) but it is still somewhat annoying. I don't think it's prevented me from getting jobs though.
There is the story of a new teacher at my alma mater getting kicked out of the faculty lounge back in the 1960s. He eventually became assistant superintendent, but aside from his hair graying at the temples, he still looks about the same 50 years later.
Sep 29, 2016
I'm 28 but I still get mistaken for a student, even though I wear dress clothes. (apparently students wear dress clothes often in this school). My demeanor is such that I make sure kids know I am the teacher and leader in the classroom, but students coming in to drop off notes or such to the teacher (me) have had hard times finding me amongst the class.
To those who say that age doesn't matter with students respecting you, I would have to disagree. Having a youthful appearance, I distinctly am aware that students often test more with younger looking teachers. Older looking teachers do not get tested as often because they have the look of an older adult and authority figure. Though you can tell the difference over time. If you look young but have good classroom management, students may test a lot early on, but quickly realize that you're not going to make it easy or enjoyable for them to break the rules and fall into line after a few weeks. With older teachers who have poor classroom management, the kids start off afraid to misbehave and quickly learn that they can get away with a lot in this class and things get chaotic later in the year.
Oct 10, 2016
Being young and good-looking goes a long way. There was a teacher where I subbed at that was straight out of an LL Bean/Abercrombie catalog and he had most of the young ladies - and maybe some of the men - eating out of his hand.
Oct 11, 2016
One of my friends is working with high school seniors in her student teaching at the moment, and the kids are very aware that she isn't much older than them, and often try to steer the focus away from the material and towards her personal life/college life.
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