Middle school teaching - ProTeacher Community


Home Join Now Search My Favorites
Help


      Middle School/Jr High (6-8)

Middle school teaching

>

Reply
 
Thread Tools
teacherwriter teacherwriter is offline
 
Joined: Apr 2011
Posts: 4,304
Senior Member

teacherwriter
 
Joined: Apr 2011
Posts: 4,304
Senior Member
Middle school teaching
Old 05-22-2018, 01:57 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #1

Please tell me what it's like to teach 6th-grade English language arts. Thanks in advance!


teacherwriter is offline   Reply With Quote

LuvMyRatties's Avatar
LuvMyRatties LuvMyRatties is offline
 
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 4,616
Senior Member

LuvMyRatties
 
LuvMyRatties's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 4,616
Senior Member
Loaded question
Old 05-22-2018, 06:45 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #2

The first thought was "herding cats."



The real answer truly depends on the kids and the curriculum. What specifically were you asking about?
LuvMyRatties is offline   Reply With Quote
BuddyDogKC's Avatar
BuddyDogKC BuddyDogKC is offline
 
Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 88
Junior Member

BuddyDogKC
 
BuddyDogKC's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 88
Junior Member

Old 05-22-2018, 07:18 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #3

I went from teaching 3rd and 4th grade for 7 years to teaching 6th grade ELA last year. It's my understanding that most middle schools have different classes for reading and writing/language arts. However, I worked at a super small school and I had to do both! My classes were 70 minutes long. The hardest part, I thought, was having to teach the reading, writing, and language arts in that time frame. It sometimes felt like I had to choose either reading or writing/language arts. I planned units where the writing prompt went along with the reading we did in class, but it was really difficult to actually TEACH the writing and the reading in the same time. I'm sure if the classes were separate, it would have been much more manageable.

I actually loved the middle school kiddos! Like I said, I did 3rd and 4th for 7 years before going to middle school. I ended up switching districts and had to move back down to 4th grade for this school year. Next year I'll be going back to middle! The best part is that you don't have the same kids all day! Good luck!
BuddyDogKC is offline   Reply With Quote
teacherwriter teacherwriter is offline
 
Joined: Apr 2011
Posts: 4,304
Senior Member

teacherwriter
 
Joined: Apr 2011
Posts: 4,304
Senior Member
Ratties
Old 05-22-2018, 12:58 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #4

I'm not sure exactly what I'm asking about. I have an opportunity to pursue a job in 6th-grade ELA, and I'm trying to decide whether to go for it. I'm licensed K-12, but have been in elementary for 7 years. I've subbed in middle school, and my student teaching was in 8th and 9th grade, although that was back in the Dark Ages. I'm just trying to figure out whether it's a move I want to pursue. I worry about the paper grading (I am so not a paper grader) and the "silo" effect of teaching only one subject versus a bunch of them, where I can make connections and do cross-curricular stuff. But there are a lot of advantages to the MS possibility, too. So... whatcha think?
teacherwriter is offline   Reply With Quote
Janylynne's Avatar
Janylynne Janylynne is offline
 
Joined: Sep 2007
Posts: 1,670
Senior Member

Janylynne
 
Janylynne's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2007
Posts: 1,670
Senior Member
Love 6th grade LA!
Old 05-22-2018, 05:35 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #5

Yes, they are squirrely and need a lot of time to get things done and prompting to stay on task. I like to use Interactive Student Notebooks, lots of short writing prompts, weekly SSR, monthly book reports, etc. They need a lot of structure and clear, written directions. You have to like the age group, though.


Janylynne is offline   Reply With Quote
LuvMyRatties's Avatar
LuvMyRatties LuvMyRatties is offline
 
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 4,616
Senior Member

LuvMyRatties
 
LuvMyRatties's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 4,616
Senior Member
I get you! (warning...long)
Old 05-23-2018, 07:36 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #6

I taught elementary for 16 years before switching to middle school. You could not have convinced me that I would ever leave elementary, but, now, I'd never go back.



Our set up is a bit different. I teach both ELA and History, as well as an elective. My day looks something like this...English, History, English, History, Conference, and Elective. In the past, I used to teach two sections of 7th grade English instead of having a conference period and elective.



As for grading, it can be crazy when papers all come in at the same time. That part is definitely not my favorite, and I often question myself about why I decided to have X,,Y, Z all at the same time..



I'm finding new ways of grading. We use Schoology as our grading platform, and it has this wonderful little assessment feature. I create a quiz and Schoology grades it and dumps it directly into my gradebook. I'm totally of fan! That doesn't work for everything.



Another thing I do is that I don't grade everything the same way. Some things I grade for content, some I grade for effort, and some I grade for completion. It just depends on what it is. There is no way in the world that you can grade everything they do. Especially in writing! That is when you decide what specific items you want to look for. Create a rubric and stick to those few things.



Look into using a program called MyAccess Vantage for writing. It's not cheap, but I love it for editing and revising without you having to do the grading. Now, it's good, but not perfect and smart kids will figure out a way to improve their scores, but not necessarily have the content you want. I've argued with them about their holistic scoring before. But...it is great for finding their spelling, grammatical, and usage errors. I love the look on their faces when it comes back with all these errors, because, of course, they always write perfect papers the first time.



Let me know if you have anything else you want to know or that I can share with you.


Luv,
LuvMyRatties is offline   Reply With Quote
SwallowedAFly's Avatar
SwallowedAFly SwallowedAFly is offline
 
Joined: Aug 2017
Posts: 6
New Member

SwallowedAFly
 
SwallowedAFly's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2017
Posts: 6
New Member
A Note from the Sub
Old 05-29-2018, 09:21 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #7

For the last six years I have been working as a substitute teacher, all grades and subjects, many districts, some of which are demographically very different from one another.

I agree with the herding cats comment, although I have found 7th and 8th graders to be easier than 4th and 5th graders in that regard. You should know that my view is currently colored by the difficult group of fourth graders I was called in to co-teach the last quarter of this school year. At this particular school, this year's batch of 4th graders was like WHOA! and was more difficult than the seventh and eighth graders I'd worked with in the same district up until then. Everyone at the school said that they were an unusual bunch, and I'm sure they're crossing their fingers all summer long and whispering "not the new normal, not the new normal" .)

The upside of middle school students is that they are starting to grasp complex material while still maintaining some enthusiasm for learning and needing some nurturing that some of us love to provide. Plus, they're funny . I encourage you to try it.
SwallowedAFly is offline   Reply With Quote

Join the conversation! Post as a guest or become a member today. New members welcome!

Reply

 

>
Middle School/Jr High (6-8)
Thread Tools




Sign Up Now

Sign Up FREE | ProTeacher Help | BusyBoard

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 10:36 PM.

Copyright © 2017 ProTeacher®
For individual use only. Do not copy, reproduce or transmit.
source: www.proteacher.net