A question for all teachers...?

Question:What grade do you teach and why? I want to become a teacher but I am divided on which grade to teach. For some reasons I would like to teach elementary but on the other hand I love Algebra and consider maybe middle schoolers...




Answers:
I am a third grade teacher. I find that the students in third grade are likely to start to understand the importance of an education. This age level allows for many different types of activities and lessons. They find kinesthetic activities (hands on) a lot of fun.

I chose this grade because it can be challenging at times. I am required to teach and provide enrichment on basic skills. Also, many new skills and concepts are introduced during the third grade. I love seeing the students mature and grasp the new concepts that they need to master. I find third graders are also respectful and still willing to listen.

I have taught fourth grade and you will notice the independence of the students. It is great that they are independent but for some the focus is on other areas and not school work. That is just what I have noticed.

I don't know where you are in your schooling but think about why you want to teach elementary and then why you want to teach middle school. You could always teach elementary and tutor middle school students in algebra. If you decide to major in math just know you are not guaranteed to teach algebra you may find jobs for teaching geometry or statistics. What you could do is major in elementary education and go back to school and get secondary certified and that way you can do both.

I guess the best thing to do is weight the pros and cons of each. The decision is ultimately yours. Good Luck!
Don't worry about what you will teach. Don't do anything except teach what and how the administration wants. Stay on the job long enough to make getting rid of you impossible. Then you can really drift and have job security with good pay and summer vacation each year.
I teach 2nd grade and absolutely love it. I love the content and the age of my students. They are still excited about school and want very much to please you. When they do misbehave simple behavior management techniques work wonders. Behavior charts, stickers, awards, and even thumbs up signs can really do the trick. They say funny things all the time, they do really sweet things for you, and they have a lot of energy. They days are filled with so much different stuff that they fly by. And every day is completely different. You never get bored. While the content is simple to us, it is very hard to them. I really enjoy teaching the fundamentals, the basis on which everything else is built. Sometimes, it's actually quite challenging to have to break down math concepts that are so simple to us so that they make sense to 7 year olds. My most favorite part is the growth that you see. A second grader at the beginning of the year is drastically different from a second grader at the end of the year. I think you will find that true for most early elementary grades. Most of that is attributed to their reading and writing skills.

Even though I couldn't imagine being anywhere else, it's not for everyone. You have to be patient, flexible, creative, and nurturing. You also need to have the ability to be "on" the whole day. There isn't much "sit at your desk" time. It's very go, go, go.

I hope this helps! Good luck in making your decision.
I assume you are a math major which means (depending on your state) that you can get certified in elementary (k-5) or Secondary (6-12).

I have 2 kids but really have never liked little kids. I like them more as they get older. So I chose secondary. If you love little kids, boom you have your answer, pick elementary.

Now the difference between middle school and high school is night and day. From grades 6-9 the kids are very hormonal and rebellious. They are entering, in, or exiting puberty. So hats off to those middle school teachers, don't know how you handle it.

The high schoolers grades 10-12 are more adult -like as you would expect. This is the route I chose. I occassionally get a kid or 2 who hasn't grown out of puberty yet, but in general it is a good experience with kids wanting to work and get good grades so they can play sports, or graduate, or get scholorships.
You will more easily find a job teaching algebra than you will teaching at the elementary level.
I teach first grade and I love it. I enjoy teaching my students the foundations of reading.
It might depend on the state you are from but my credentials in 2 states allow me to teach K-8. I'm sure while you are attending college you'll be doing internships so you'll see what age levels you work best with. If you have time you can offer to volunteer in classrooms and it looks great on a resume.
I teach 6th grade in an elementary school. I love it. I have been teaching for 5 straight years now...going into my 6th. I also taught a little nearly 20 years ago now...did a lot of other things in between. I have taught 1, 3, 5 and 6th in the past years and I really love 6th grade. The kids are old enough to be able to be independent, and they can really think. They have enough basic skills, or should anyway, so that they can be creative. I can talk to them...like the half grown adults they are. I love teaching!
Well I teach high school earth science and physical education 10. I have always been inspired by science so it was only logical to teach it. I love my job although i have only taught for one year... My advice, pray about it... God know what you should do.
I teach high school biology and love it. I did teach 6th grade science for a couple of years and I really enjoyed that too. Middle school is an interesting age. There's never a dull day when you teach middle school. Most of them are still young enough to be lovable but they are old enough to start to really come into their own personalities. The best teachers I've ever taught with were at the middle school also (it takes special teachers to teach in middle schools).
You sound a lot like I did when I began teaching. I loved the younger kids, but I really wanted to teach math, which was my major as an undergrad. I ended up teaching math, one year in middle school and the rest in high school. I also tutor math privately to all grades.

Sometimes I wish that I had taught elementary school with all those adorable little kids who just want to learn and please. However, I love math and the challenge of helping students to overcome their challenges in the area, while also teaching what I love is amazing. I love the little kids, but I don't think I could have taught that level all day. I love the Algebra II and Precalculus too much.

This is a decision only you can make, but hopefully this has helped you see how I made my choice. Good luck!
I've taught Head Start 5 years, 3rd grade for 12 years, and now 5th grade for 5 years. I've enjoyed them all - but I like 5th grade best. After my first 5 years in Head Start I decided I wanted to work with kids that could at least manage to blow their own nose and handle going to the restroom on their own! The little ones need so much help with everything! The older the kids, the more independent they are. But they are all in need of a caring, kind, and supportive teacher.

You should probably also realize that you may not necessarily be teaching what you want to teach at the grade level you prefer. It depends on the openings available in a district. Most contracts state that you may be asked to teach at different grade levels/subject areas as determined by the district. You might want 8th grade algebra but have to teach 5th grade math!

Good luck!

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