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Would you rather teach 4-8 or 8-12?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by MMcC, Mar 6, 2008.


  1. MMcC

    MMcC

    Sep 10, 2005
    Dallas
    I'm going to be a Science teacher. I have to decide if I want to teach General Science grades 4-8 or Life Sciences 8-12. With 4-8 the content exam will be a little easier. I just don't know which I'd rather do, or which one I'd rather do less. Help. Thoughts?
     
  2. Deluge Of Sound

    Deluge Of Sound Banned

    Nov 8, 2007
    Maine/Vermont
    Do you have a better time with young kids, or with high-schoolers?

    That should make your choice fairly easy.
     
  3. Brendan

    Brendan Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2000
    Austin, TX
    Something to keep in mind teaching 8-12, i.e. seniors, is, you get a lot of pressure from parents (and sometimes staff) to pass people that are failing/marginal. That, and just more pressure to pass them for athletics, for scholarships, for any number of reasons. Parents get crankier when suddenly, Billy might not be able to walk at graduation, than if Billy might need to improve in science next year.
     
  4. MMcC

    MMcC

    Sep 10, 2005
    Dallas
    I really don't have much experience with either. I'm just going on generalizations. Seems like there'd be ups and downs with both of course, but how to weigh them and come out with a decision?
     
  5. MyUsernameHere

    MyUsernameHere ?????????????

    Nov 3, 2007
    Lexington KY
    A little easier? Maybe you should pick the job that gives you the most time to lobby for a better curriculum for your high schoolers. ;)
     
  6. I would teach the high schoolers.

    lowsound
     
  7. bassaficionado6

    bassaficionado6 Something about gumption

    Jan 7, 2008
    Napa, CA
    Personally, I'd go with the kids. Highschoolers are d***s. I should know i'm one of them. :D
     
  8. High school. You'll probably have some students into some cool music, play bass, etc. As much as kids suck, the younger they are, the crappier they are. 10 years from now the kids will be unbearably stupid.
     
  9. I'd probably rather teach grades 4-8. IMHO, kids at that age level are probably a little behaved, less bored/jaded, and they'll likely have better involvement from their parents to help them get their work done. But yeah, a lot of it comes down to which age group you enjoy being around more.
     
  10. Jared Lash

    Jared Lash Born under punches

    Aug 21, 2006
    Denver, CO
    Why such a broad range?

    Personally, I wouldn't teach 6th, 7th or 8th graders if I had a choice.

    But if you are teaching elementary school grades (4-6) how would that work? I know some public elementary schools in CA have separate computer/music/science teachers where the classroom teachers bring their kids in once or twice a week.

    I like high school kids personally. Specifically I liked teaching juniors and seniors. But of course it varies from teacher to teacher as some in my school refused to teach seniors.
     
  11. Jared Lash

    Jared Lash Born under punches

    Aug 21, 2006
    Denver, CO
    The easy solution is to clearly explain your grading policy and make sure that parents are kept informed of how Billy is doing. In my experience, parents fly off the handle when they are surprised. If they've been notified all along that their kid isn't doing what he needs to be, then the focus of their ire is almost always where it should be - on their child.

    Oh man, if I had videotapes of my days spent in junior highs to show. Girls running in packs, screeching about whatever minor event is a complete catastrophe in their minds, boys acting like little punks and all of them bouncing off the walls. No thank you.
     
  12. SoComSurfing

    SoComSurfing Mercedes Benz Superdome. S 127. R 22. S 12-13.

    Feb 15, 2002
    Mobile, Al
    I've thought about this a lot. I'd rather teach 11-12 graders, only if teaching advanced coursework, though. Otherwise, I'd probably go with kindergarten or first grade.
     
  13. bassaficionado6

    bassaficionado6 Something about gumption

    Jan 7, 2008
    Napa, CA
    Your post is both slightly confusing and just a tad true?
     
  14. Brendan

    Brendan Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2000
    Austin, TX
    In an ideal world, this is exactly how it goes down. In real life...well, it usually doesn't happen like that. Personal threats, claims of bigotry, racism, threatening lawsuits (which is usually the magic solution). Parents claiming my mom never called them, or that the kids never brought home progress reports, that sort of thing. Then there's begging and cajoling (sometimes on the part of the faculty. Usually after the lawsuit threats). My mom and the department head basically had to stare down the rest of the school on a couple of occasions.

    Of course, maybe she's just had bad luck with schools.
     
  15. MMcC

    MMcC

    Sep 10, 2005
    Dallas
    4-8 or 8-12 just dictates which content exam I take. It's not to say I will teach the entire range.
     
  16. Jared Lash

    Jared Lash Born under punches

    Aug 21, 2006
    Denver, CO
    I think a big part of it is how much the administration backs their teachers. I can only speak from my experience (and at a private school at that) but I always had full support of my principal/vice principlal/academic dean etc in these types of situations. In fact, the biggest pressure I ever got was from our basketball coach who wanted me to pass a kid that did no work. Then again the coach was a jerk and was fired after that year for other reasons.
     
  17. Jared Lash

    Jared Lash Born under punches

    Aug 21, 2006
    Denver, CO
    But what I still don't understand is that while junior high kids have dedicated science teachers, how would it work for 4-6 grades? Do they have dedicated science teachers for those grades in the district you're applying to?
     
  18. DO you want to deal with kids that make fart jokes or kids who spit in your lunch?
     
  19. If you did choose 4-8, you'd be a rare breed: for whatever reason, it seems like there are very few men teaching at the elementary grade levels these days.
     
  20. Have you thought about what you would learn from the age groups? The younger would most likely show you the world in a new light, an the older would be more likely to make you reevaluate some things and ponder more. Of course this is all just my thoughts on the matter.

    Maybe you should get in contact with some local teachers and go sit in their class for a day to get a feel for it?
     

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