My Education: BA, Stonehill College M.Ed., Fitchburg State College
My Prior Experience: I began working in Brockton as a teacher's assistant in a fourth grade inclusion classroom. In December of that year, I was offered a permanent substitute position in a third grade classroom in the district where I'm currently employed. After the end of that year, I was offered a permanent position at another school in the same area. This is my third year there.
My Company: I work for a school district in suburban Massachusetts.
Job/Career Overview: I am a fourth grade teacher in a Boston suburb. My primary responsibilities include educating students academically, socially and emotionally. I teach all subjects and work hard to prepare my students for future grades and upcoming standardized tests. I work in an inclusion classroom, where I spend time with students of varying abilities. I have to shape my instruction so that students with learning or emotional disabilities can make progress as well.
On a typical day, I get to school early to prepare for the day. When the students arrive, they complete their morning work, and I take attendance and collect homework. The morning usually consists of language work: spelling, grammar, and reading. Right before lunch, we spend about an hour on mathematics. Throughout each day, students have one special: gym, art, library, computers, and music. This serves as my prep period. Students have lunch and recess until 1:00. The afternoon usually revolves around science, social studies, and writing.
I rate this career 9 out of 10.
There are amazing things that come with being a teacher. As a teacher, you have a responsibility to educate the youth of our country. It is very rewarding when students have that "Aha!" moment, when they suddenly understand what you are teaching them. Watching my struggling students experience success is one of the best parts of my job. I enjoy having summers off to spend time with my family and friends.
The worst part about teaching is that there are always going to be students you can't reach, and that is frustrating. Also, there are some students who misbehave.
It is important to get experience in a classroom before you begin teaching. Many undergraduate classes teach you HOW to teach, and are important in learning the curriculum. But there is no replacement for being in an elementary classroom. I think I learned more about teaching in my first year of teaching than I did in all of my undergraduate classes combined. Also, be prepared to work hard. Even though the school day is over in the afternoon, there are many hours after school when you are still working.