Saturday, November 18, 2006

Serious Doubts

So my pre-student teaching experience isn't going so hot. I've had about a zillion meltdowns in the last week and a half. I am having some serious doubts about the profession I have chosen for myself. I just don't understand! When I did my first field experiences I loved being in the high school. Now I'm in a different school but it's the same grade and everything. You'd think I'd love it just as much but I don't. The kids are completely unmotivated, and they have no respect for their teacher (meaning they have even less respect for me). I just can't be the kind of teacher who screams and tells kids to shutup to get students' attention. My cooperating teacher thinks I'm too nice and that I'm afraid to be mean to them. It's not that I'm afraid to be mean to them, I just don't want to be. I'm perfectly ok with not being their best friend--I have plenty of friends and don't need eleventh graders to apply for the position. I just want a level of mutual respect. Is that too much to ask? I'm just not feeling it. I don't know if I'm cut out for this, and I think it's a little too late to change my mind. It's already not going well and I imagine it will only get worse when I'm "in charge" and the "real" teacher leaves the classroom. Any advice? Chad thinks it will be better when I have my own classroom...right now I just want to cry. I'm seriously contemplating applying for grad school. A masters degree in English with an emphasis in creative writing is sounding like a pretty good alternative to facing the real world =-)

4 comments:

  1. Im sure in those kids hearts they appreciate you. I mean i apreciate the teachers i hate. I mean id have to. They are crazy enough to teach me. IM sorry Kate im sure ur doing fine though. U should teach sophmore highschool and next year com eto Woods cross. and teach for me. (sorry if i didn't help much)

    -Jared

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  2. It isn't so much about screaming, or even raising your voice, but rather the tone of voice. You need a scary voice. Also, you need something that will instil, if not respect, fear. Because they will never respect you if they think they can walk all over you. Do you have the power to give them a pop quiz of 10 questions that is like 25% of their grade? Or conversely, a verbal pop quiz in which substantial rewards are bestowed for co-operation and participation? Too bad it isn't chemistry where you could just blow something up to get their attention.

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  3. Thanks for the ideas, Scully. I don't know if I can make it worth 25% of their grade, but quizzes are probably definitely a possibility once I'm actually doing my student teaching. I will start working on a scary voice =-)

    Jared, thanks for the support =-)

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  4. I'm biased -- so don't listen to me. But I hated my student teaching and I had a miserable first year of teaching hs. Year two was pretty good -- year three was even easier . . . but I still never loved it. However, I'm teaching college freshmen right now . . . and it's such a world of difference. I'm so glad I'm doing a masters. I haven't missed teaching HS even one day--and it's been a year. I'm so with you about the respect thing. It gets disillusioning. And I'm the type of person that needs to be illusioned to be happy. :) (course, the license is always a good "fall back" too if it doesn't work out)

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