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She may be sorry she asked...

There's a very interesting post here at historystudents. Anyone with graduate school plans/experience (in any field) might like to look at the questions the poster is asking and offer your own two cents. She's getting some hard truths told her, but she gets points in my book for being brave enough to ask her questions publicly.


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 21st, 2010 02:51 am (UTC)
Darn it, I wrote out my seventy-five cents, then found it wouldn't post because I'm not a friend. :-( So, since I went on and on, I'll post it here. :-D Lucky you! ;-)

"Hi there, new teacher here! I agree with all of the above - really! Don't do grad studies, or DO do it - if you want to jump right into teaching, switch to a B.Ed. As far as I'm aware, you need that to get into an M.Ed, regardless of what undergrad or other Master's you have. And if you want to change curriculum, I agree with a previous commenter - that won't come merely from classroom work, you will need to get out there as a teacher and become an activist. You CAN do all that! I just suggest not to do it right away.

I'm not sure how old you are, but if you've just come out of an undergrad, my advice to you is STOP! Just for a bit. Get out there, work, do another job, get those workplace skills, get a job you hate, get a job you love, get a job abroad! Travel! Talk to people. Especially if you want to become a high school teacher, have at least three jobs before you start teaching - be able to tell your students what everything is like, what their life might be like, not just what academia is like, because not all of them will be heading there. As a social studies or history or civics teacher, seeing what the world is like is as valuable an asset as more study. Also, I've spoken to teachers who went right from their undergrad into a B.Ed. then directly to teaching, or even from high school directly to a B.Ed. program, and they've said that it was twice as hard becoming a teaching, since they were not only learning teaching (hard enough!) but learning how to navigate a workplace on top of that. So I would suggest that you either stay in the M.A. program you're in and take another look at it (as a good foundation, and something that will distinguish you from your colleagues who, when you're looking to get a job, are also your competition, remember), relax, and don't see it as a means to an end, but as part of your learning process. Then get a job when you finish, and come back to a B.Ed. program... Or... take a break from university. I think it's also good to take some time off from academia and then come back to it with a bit more of a worldly perspective. Go back for a M.A. in History, because you might be ready for it then, or go for a B.Ed. It sounds like you're passionate about teaching, so you'll have a great start as a teacher, but, so that you're the best you can be for your students, don't jump right in just yet. Have stories to tell your students about yourself - I'm finding that's the best way to make them listen.

Good luck!"
Oct. 21st, 2010 12:59 pm (UTC)
Jen, that's a terrific reply. Do you mind if I repost it on your behalf, or maybe just link to it here?
Oct. 22nd, 2010 02:01 am (UTC)
Please do! I can't post to it, and I hope it was helpful...
Oct. 22nd, 2010 02:48 pm (UTC)
I think it will be very helpful. :-)
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )