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Bummed about work - teachers come in

Hi ladies...

For those of you who are teachers, I wanted to run something past you.  My building is two grade levels only (2nd and 3rd).  I have taught 3rd grade for my entire career (this is my 6th year).  My principal talked to me today and told me that she needs to get rid of one 3rd grade class and one 2nd grade class.  She is thinking of moving me down to 2nd grade for several reasons.

I know it's only one grade level, but for those of you who have made a grade level change, how did it go?  My friends are all within this grade level and I would never see them if I make the switch.  Also, the 3rd grade team is very close knit; the 2nd grade team has a lot of internal fighting.  I guess I'm trying to look for positives in this situation.  I probably won't find out for sure until mid-May.

Any thoughts on making a grade level switch?

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Re: Bummed about work - teachers come in

  • Hmm...I teach high school so it's not as big of a deal to switch a grade, but it does mean learning a totally new curriculum.  When I got moved to American Lit I had to learn 8 new books and create all new lessons, which sucked. But now I really love teaching it.  So depending on what you end up teaching, you may really learn to like the new grade. 

    Also, maybe you could sort of tame the infighting.  Would you have any friendly face down in 2nd?

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  • I would ask your principal about the possibility of looping with the same 2nd grade group up to 3rd grade the following year.

    I'm am in my 6th year at my current school. After 3 years, I moved from 7th to 8th. That first year in 8th grade was my best year ever because I already knew my students and they already knew and trusted me. As much as I hate change and it's work to start over in a new grade, it was that experience that convinced me that if my principal asked me to loop EVERY year (6th to 7th to 8th and back down to 6th) I would be willing to do it.

    I hear your concerns about leaving a tight knit team for one in turmoil. Maybe your principal is actually trying to break up the negative team?

    I'm sorry.. I know it's stressful to have to make that change. :(

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  • I teach music, so I really can't help you with the grade level thing. But...I will say that there is a HUGE difference between 2nd and 3rd grades. It's one of those big transition years where you can really see the maturity and independence develop. IMO, I would take 3rd grade over 2nd any day. Sorry, I know I'm no help.

    I do think that a change can be refreshing sometimes, though. I recently switched from elementary to middle school and I LOVE it, which I never thought I would when I started teaching.

    Best of luck to you, in whatever you decide.

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  • I'm sorry :( that's hard. This is my 5th year as a 5th grade teacher. My sister is also a teacher and recently switched from 2nd to 3rd grade. She liked 2nd grade better but they are a little less independent. 3rd graders in our state have to take state tests, so maybe that is a positive if you had to give standardized tests?

    I think it would be hard if you know there is already tension between some of the other team members. Do you have the least amount of seniority? Could you make a deal to move back to third grade after a year?

    I guess a positive that I keep saying to myself is that at least I have a job! Many teachers in our state have been pink slipped, so I am glad that I have tenure and am hopefully safe for now... HTH! GL.

  • I've done a few switches.  Kdg to 3 back to kdg.  I think its a bit harder to go down than it is to go up, but you can survive it!  I agree with PP in that your principal could have a reason for wanting to switch you.  Is there a 2nd grade teacher you feel you could start talking to/plan with over the summer?

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  • image SnowAngel717:

    I'm sorry :( that's hard. This is my 5th year as a 5th grade teacher. My sister is also a teacher and recently switched from 2nd to 3rd grade. She liked 2nd grade better but they are a little less independent. 3rd graders in our state have to take state tests, so maybe that is a positive if you had to give standardized tests?

    I think it would be hard if you know there is already tension between some of the other team members. Do you have the least amount of seniority? Could you make a deal to move back to third grade after a year?

    I guess a positive that I keep saying to myself is that at least I have a job! Many teachers in our state have been pink slipped, so I am glad that I have tenure and am hopefully safe for now... HTH! GL.

    This. Especially in Ohio, it's nice that your principal wants to keep you over the two teachers you will potentially be losing. You may find that you actually like 2nd grade even better! I'm also a high school teacher, but I teach all four levels of students (9th and 10 grade English, 11th and 12th grade journalism) and I have found that after a semester of learning the new curriculum, it's not so bad. GL!

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  • I can't add anything that hasn't been said already except this:

     

    Become Swiss. 

    They call me Michelle Switzerland Lastname, I swear. I am one of three music teachers in my district (k-12 community school). The other two hate each other with a burning passion and have quite a past of snippity, crappity, ridiculous, over-50-years-old-acting-like-babies fighting. 

    I am nice to both but whenever they start biitching about each other, I just don't listen, and tell them politely I don't want to get involved. 

    Sorry you are getting thrown in that situation. I went from being the only music teacher at a 1500 student middle school to being one of three in an 800 students k-12 school. It is a different world. 

  • image SnowAngel717:

    I'm sorry :( that's hard. This is my 5th year as a 5th grade teacher. My sister is also a teacher and recently switched from 2nd to 3rd grade. She liked 2nd grade better but they are a little less independent. 3rd graders in our state have to take state tests, so maybe that is a positive if you had to give standardized tests?

    I think it would be hard if you know there is already tension between some of the other team members. Do you have the least amount of seniority? Could you make a deal to move back to third grade after a year?

    I guess a positive that I keep saying to myself is that at least I have a job! Many teachers in our state have been pink slipped, so I am glad that I have tenure and am hopefully safe for now... HTH! GL.

    No, that's the thing.  Out of the current 3rd grades (there are 14 in my building), there are 4 people under me in seniority.  She is not looking at it from a seniority perspective.  She said that looking up and down the hall, she could really only see myself and one other girl (my best friend at school) as having the personality to be able to make the move.  By that, I think she means the ability to get along with people who are fighting as well as the patience for the younger grade level.  Once again, I feel like I'm getting penalized for being the "nice, patient teacher".

    Truly, I could argue it based on seniority, but I don't want to create a hostile work environment between my principal and me.  I would have to give up team teaching with my partner Josh, who is one of my best friends both in and out of school.  I like the idea of requesting to loop back up.  She is leaning toward moving me over my girlfriend because she is only in her 3rd year and is still getting grounded in the curriculum.  My principal thinks I would be quicker on my feet learning and adapting to a new curriculum.  I don't know...I guess this just really caught me off guard.

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  • image JennyAnne022776:
    image SnowAngel717:

    I'm sorry :( that's hard. This is my 5th year as a 5th grade teacher. My sister is also a teacher and recently switched from 2nd to 3rd grade. She liked 2nd grade better but they are a little less independent. 3rd graders in our state have to take state tests, so maybe that is a positive if you had to give standardized tests?

    I think it would be hard if you know there is already tension between some of the other team members. Do you have the least amount of seniority? Could you make a deal to move back to third grade after a year?

    I guess a positive that I keep saying to myself is that at least I have a job! Many teachers in our state have been pink slipped, so I am glad that I have tenure and am hopefully safe for now... HTH! GL.

    No, that's the thing.  Out of the current 3rd grades (there are 14 in my building), there are 4 people under me in seniority.  She is not looking at it from a seniority perspective.  She said that looking up and down the hall, she could really only see myself and one other girl (my best friend at school) as having the personality to be able to make the move.  By that, I think she means the ability to get along with people who are fighting as well as the patience for the younger grade level.  Once again, I feel like I'm getting penalized for being the "nice, patient teacher".

    Truly, I could argue it based on seniority, but I don't want to create a hostile work environment between my principal and me.  I would have to give up team teaching with my partner Josh, who is one of my best friends both in and out of school.  I like the idea of requesting to loop back up.  She is leaning toward moving me over my girlfriend because she is only in her 3rd year and is still getting grounded in the curriculum.  My principal thinks I would be quicker on my feet learning and adapting to a new curriculum.  I don't know...I guess this just really caught me off guard.

    I'm sorry, Jenny. It sucks.. but it sounds like a major compliment and vote of confidence from your principal. I know you can tackle  and conquer this challenge with grace and class. ((Hugs))

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  • image SarahL77:

    I'm sorry, Jenny. It sucks.. but it sounds like a major compliment and vote of confidence from your principal. I know you can tackle  and conquer this challenge with grace and class. ((Hugs))

    Thanks sweetie!  Believe me, I am grateful to have a job, especially since DH has been laid off for over a year.  I just don't like the thought of being up in the air for the next two months until everything shakes out.  I'm confident that I can do a pretty good job in either grade level, I just don't think I'm going to enjoy going to work as much as I do right now. Sad

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  • It sucks being the nice girl sometimes.

    I will say that having moved from one grade to the next, it was nice to have the knowledge of where they came from and where they are going.  Knowing what is waiting them in the third grade will help make you a more effective second grade teacher.



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  • image LolliLately:

    It sucks being the nice girl sometimes.

    I will say that having moved from one grade to the next, it was nice to have the knowledge of where they came from and where they are going.  Knowing what is waiting them in the third grade will help make you a more effective second grade teacher.

    Thank you!  This was one of the things I thought about as well.  That's why I really like the choice of looping back up to 3rd grade.  If I have a crappy year two years from now, I have nobody to blame but myself - lol.  I do agree though.  We complain every year about how the kids are coming to us unprepared.  Knowing what they need to know in 3rd grade would really help.

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  • I teach 8th grade History, but the 4 years before that I taught 1st grade.  Making the change from 1st to 8th was (is still) really hard, but I'm managing.  I would think that a grade level change from 3rd to 2nd wouldn't be bad at all. 

     

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  • I know this is only my second post here, but this fits me perfectly! I switched from third to second grade this year (my choice). I LOVE it! It was the best decision I ever made. True, they seemed a little unable to do much the first few weeks, but it got better. The girls do not get nasty like mine always did in third. I can do more fun "kid" stuff with them. The big plus...no state testing! I am working with a great second grade team, which I know makes a big difference. I really needed the change, and at this point in the year, I can do basically anything I did with my third graders the first half of the year.  Best of luck!
  • As a PP noted, changes mean more work in the beginning but there could great positives in the end.  It is a new challenge so it would energize me.  Also, you could breathe life into the odd group!  GL - your principal chose you for a reason!
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  • I've taught both and prefer 2nd over 3rd.  The first year will be more work, but it will come easy I think.  Plus, you have a better idea of how and what to prepare them for. 

    And, I dont know what things are like for you right now, but I'm in NJ and things are BAD right now for education.  If it were me, I would just be glad I still have a job!!  In one week, our entire child study team, all special ed personel, and all non tenured teachers were canned. sad, sad week.

     Good luck btw!!

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  • Thank you both scherpha and AnthonysBride!  I am definitely trying to sit and think of the positives.  My teaching partner said not to do that because then I'm "giving in" lol.  He's bummed too.  You guys are all making me feel more positive about a potential move.
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  • image bry238:

    I've taught both and prefer 2nd over 3rd.  The first year will be more work, but it will come easy I think.  Plus, you have a better idea of how and what to prepare them for. 

    And, I dont know what things are like for you right now, but I'm in NJ and things are BAD right now for education.  If it were me, I would just be glad I still have a job!!  In one week, our entire child study team, all special ed personel, and all non tenured teachers were canned. sad, sad week.

     Good luck btw!!

    Believe me, I am.  DH has been out of work for over a year.  I know enough about limited incomes and not being able to find work.  I am very thankful.

    I guess I just don't like the fact that I'm being "penalized" because other people don't have the patience and ability to get along as well as I do.  After 6 years into a district when others in my grade level have 2 years in, I would liked to have been asked rather than told.

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  • I understand completely how you feel. Each year we are faced with moving buildings or grades. I know that I would be bummed if I had to leave my teammates, but sometimes I think changing grades would be fun. And if you are going from 3rd to 2nd you would offer a really great perspective, knowing exactly what will be expected of the kids the next year!

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  • I know I'm late getting to this post, but....

    I did 3rd grade for two years, then moved down to 2nd, back to 3rd, then this year started out in 6th and moved down to Kindergarten Feb. 1st!

    I know how hard it is to change grades, but I've found with all the moving I did, thinking about it and worrying about it was a lot worse then actually teaching a new grade. From my experience, I LOVED 2nd! Best year ever, and I would go back in a second. I found it really helped to have taught third grade before because I knew exactly when they needed for 3rd.

    Good luck!  I know it's a hard decision, but it sounds like no matter what grade you get your students will be lucky to have you!

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  • image mharison:

    I know I'm late getting to this post, but....

    I did 3rd grade for two years, then moved down to 2nd, back to 3rd, then this year started out in 6th and moved down to Kindergarten Feb. 1st!

    I know how hard it is to change grades, but I've found with all the moving I did, thinking about it and worrying about it was a lot worse then actually teaching a new grade. From my experience, I LOVED 2nd! Best year ever, and I would go back in a second. I found it really helped to have taught third grade before because I knew exactly when they needed for 3rd.

    Good luck!  I know it's a hard decision, but it sounds like no matter what grade you get your students will be lucky to have you!

    Thank you...that's a very nice thing to say.  I just talked to my mom and she told me that 2nd grade was her favorite as well.  I'm definitely feeling better about the situation.  I'm going to let things be and have my principal make whatever decision she feels is best.

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