Jump to content

Primary teaching - honestly what is it like?


  • Please log in to reply
16 replies to this topic

#1 mum201

Posted 25 December 2012 - 01:57 PM

Hi all,
I have DS, who is a year old. When I had him, the idea was that I would go back to my corporate role in 6 months. DH and I visited every daycare in the area and couldn't agree on one and finally figured out the problem was not the specific daycares, but both of us not wanting him in daycare at all. Plus we realised that both parents being out of the home for 12 hrs a day just wasn't going to work for us - so I packed in my job, and am a sahm.


Now that I am thinking about it, I don't think my previous life is ever going to mesh well with being a mummy so I am going to have to retrain and do something more appropriate. I have done a bit of undergrad study before for fun and enjoyed it so am now thinking about going down that path again. At first I was thinking Accounting and doing bookkeeping from home or for a local business, and whilst this seems to be a sensible option, I would find it painful and I wouldn't love it.

Then I thought about teaching. I used to teach kids martial arts and was good at it. I am patient, am great with little kids, and want to do something that makes a difference in the world - and I feel this fits the bill. It's also a skill that is transportable.  Plus, it fits in perfectly with having a child. So, enough of my long winded post. Do you enjoy being a primary teacher?

#2 naomi_j86

Posted 25 December 2012 - 03:30 PM

I love teaching and having my own class.

I do not love casual teaching.

Some people are lucky and get a job straight away, but there is also the very real possibility that you could end up going a few weeks with no work, and if you are just casual, ALL holiday periods are unpaid.

#3 Beanbag Warrior

Posted 25 December 2012 - 03:34 PM

QUOTE (naomi_j86 @ 25/12/2012, 03:30 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I love teaching and having my own class.

I do not love casual teaching.

Some people are lucky and get a job straight away, but there is also the very real possibility that you could end up going a few weeks with no work, and if you are just casual, ALL holiday periods are unpaid.



3 years without a job before ANZAC day, and only 2-3 casual days before then.

The teaching is fine.  The getting a job is the crap bit.

#4 carlakoala

Posted 25 December 2012 - 04:30 PM

Teaching is a wonderful career for all the reasons you mentioned.
It can also be exhausting, especially in the junior grades when you are on your feet nearly all day, constantly on the go...multitasking galore.                                                                                     There is physical preparation of resources and paperwork preparation at home, assessments, portfolios, reports, committee meetings, staff meetings, professional development research, arranging incursion, excursions, special event days, displays...just some of the aspects of working year. In other words it is not a 9am - 3pm job and whilst the holidays are generous some of those days are used to set up the room and prepare lots of resources for the term.
I have two young school age boys who also go to the same school I work at - it's a bonus in some ways (no need for outside care arrangements) and not in others. I often have to take them early to school with me so I can set up for the day and then they are there after school as I try to clean up.
When we get home they need prompting with their homework, I listen to their home reading, cook dinner and prompt the whole bedtime routine.
Some days I thrive on the business of it all and sometimes I fall asleep on the couch my 8pm.
The above views/ways are just my own and of course not common to all teachers.

Best of luck with any career choice you make.


#5 MagneticPoetry

Posted 25 December 2012 - 04:46 PM

I wouldn't recommend primary teaching simply because there aren't enough jobs.  There are those who get lucky, or are in the right place at the right time, then there are the rest of us.  Casual teaching sucks and can really mess with your self esteem - you don't get called for a few weeks and start wondering if you messed up.  You don't belong anywhere and feel kind of second class.  And you also get the pleasure of watching other teachers who don't care, and do the job badly and b**ch about how much they hate it who do the bare minimum.  And that isn't everyone of course, but I've seen them and its frustrating.

And it doesn't depend on doing brilliantly at uni, grade point average of 3.4, and still no permanency here  sad.gif  .

I'd love my own class, and I actually really enjoy the actual teaching bit, and I'm good at it, but I'm fed up with the instability of casual work.  Look on the Facebook TeachNSW site, there are heaps of us in the same boat.

#6 gina70

Posted 25 December 2012 - 05:00 PM

Next year will be my 5th year as a teacher.  You want honesty so here it is: (tired so using dot points)

* hated the 4 years of study, expensive (even with hecs) and time consuming
*first year out I hated it, long long hours and very stressful
*2nd year out a bit better, but still wasn't sure I was going to stick it out
*3rd year could only get small contracts and relief work, okay, but  not good for the budget
*4th year:  totally in love with teaching!  But in saying that my kids are older and I devoted a lot of time and energy to my class.

I am still on contract and I probably won't get a permanent job for a few years yet as they are very rare.  I mostly work 9 hour days, my students are on my mind a lot, the weekends involve work but also preparing for the working week, like ironing etc. As I am too tired at night to do much.

I absolutely love my job/vocation and have already started planning what I will teach next year, researching and working out my classroom layout.  Like most teachers, I do spend a few thousand of my own money each year as well.

You do not teach for the money!




#7 black cherry

Posted 25 December 2012 - 05:01 PM

Does anyone know if it's also hard to secure a secondary teaching role in NSW?

#8 carlakoala

Posted 25 December 2012 - 06:01 PM

I forgot to mention that I am one of the very lucky ones who is a permanent teacher. I am very grateful for it each year. As so many others commented it's heart breaking to watch so many casual teachers unsure where or if they will have a job year to year.  These are good - great teaches who put in way above and beyond effort to add to their  resume in hope of standing out for selection. I can only imagine the stress of them and their family due to the uncertainness of work year to year. I've never, ever noticed there being a hint of a 'teacher shortage' in primary schools about me - I think the fine print would read 'teacher shortage of high school maths teacher in extremely remote community.'

#9 Penguin78

Posted 25 December 2012 - 06:09 PM

QUOTE (Flylikeabutterfly @ 25/12/2012, 06:01 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Does anyone know if it's also hard to secure a secondary teaching role in NSW?


Depends what you are teaching. Maths and Science yes. English and history in Western Sydney. Most everything else is hard.


OP , as someone who went from corporate to teaching, the work hours are a lot more manageable as a teacher. Sure it's not 9-3, but less then corporate that's for sure

#10 librablonde

Posted 25 December 2012 - 06:16 PM

My friend is a high school teacher and has been a on contracts at the same school, fulltime for 4+ years. Only now has he finally be offered a permanent role. It's really been very hard on his family being financially unstable all those years. He loves teaching the teens, hates the politics of how the school is run and the instability of contract roles.

#11 **Tiger*Feral**

Posted 25 December 2012 - 06:28 PM

----

Edited by Tyrone Finkelmeyer, 26 March 2013 - 08:43 PM.


#12 mum201

Posted 25 December 2012 - 07:18 PM

QUOTE (proudmama1 @ 25/12/2012, 08:12 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Still waiting for DS to wake up! He did not fall asleep until 10.30 last night...


Thank you for your replies! A lot to think about indeed! My sister teaches secondary school, so I have been probing her for her opinion as well. She agrees with a lot has been said here and also added that the staff room politics can be crappy, but she wouldn't do anything else. She also feels it could be a good personality fit. Urgh..... I have a lot of thinking to do....... But I am actually a bit excited about it.
But thanks again all.

#13 Kalota

Posted 26 December 2012 - 09:29 AM

Honestly, I teach Prep and at the school I am currently at there is no way I could continue my career if I had a family sad.gif Its far too exhausting and far too much work. I get to school at about 7.30-8am and don't leave until around 6pm, I also do schoolwork almost every evening when I get home and on the weekend. I love the job, it's very rewarding and I love the children I work with and seeing them grow - but at my current school it is very demanding and I don't think I could continue if I had young children. I only speak on behalf of my own experience, though!

Edited by Kalota, 26 December 2012 - 09:30 AM.


#14 José

Posted 26 December 2012 - 12:25 PM

I used to be a teacher and got permanency in nsw straight out of uni  there is definitely LOTS of out of hours work. Also I worked in schools where children came from disadvantaged backgrounds and I often struggled with wanting to do more for the kids and feeling bad that I couldnt.  I hated that society seems not to value teachers as I see teaching as so important. Also be prepared to be yelled at, sworn at and complained about- from teachers and students. That isnt just my experience,  surveys by teachers federation indicates if happens much more than you think. Just some examples one six year old was kicking other  six year olds and calling them mother f#@! Ers. I had him sit separately for a short time.  His dad went off that I was picking on him. Many parents think that because they have 1 or 2 kids they could effectively teach a whole class and are often quick to let you know. Politics in schools can be crazy as you mentioned. Also while I found teaching to be challenging it wasnt intellectually stimulating. In primany school be aware you have to teach music as well as sport, art,  history etc etc.

#15 Niamh23

Posted 26 December 2012 - 12:38 PM

QUOTE (Penguin78 @ 25/12/2012, 07:09 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Depends what you are teaching. Maths and Science yes. English and history in Western Sydney. Most everything else is hard.


OP , as someone who went from corporate to teaching, the work hours are a lot more manageable as a teacher. Sure it's not 9-3, but less then corporate that's for sure


I went from corporate to teaching (secondary) and have found the hours much longer. Maybe not in terms of "office" hours, but the prep and marking done outside of school takes up a lot of time. And the difference is that you are always thinking about school in the back of your mind. It's not a job you can just leave at the office and forget about it.

And not to nitpick, but it's less thAn! Sorry, one of my pet peeves as an English teacher!

Edited by Niamh23, 26 December 2012 - 12:39 PM.


#16 Expelliarmus

Posted 26 December 2012 - 12:44 PM

It's hard work, it's underappreciated and is unstable for at least 4-5 years.

#17 Lyn29

Posted 26 December 2012 - 07:43 PM

.

Edited by bye, 29 March 2013 - 03:04 PM.





2 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 2 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

Special Ticket Offer, Save $8!

The Essential Baby & Toddler Show is back this April! Save $8 off the door price for a limited time only!

Why I breastfed my son until he was three

The fact that I not only breastfed my son, but breastfed him for three and a half years, seems pretty incredible in retrospect.

Do babies and young children see ghosts?

Do babies and young children see ghosts? If you’ve pondered the question, you’re not alone.

15 years with Essential Baby: meet Therese

"Life has a funny way of giving you what you need when you need it the most."

Mum causes a stir by taking a stand against leggings

A mum has found herself the subject of debate after claiming tight bottoms cause lustful thoughts in men.

Don't set a parenting goal for 2015 - do this instead

The problem with goal setting as a parent is the measure. How do we really know if we’re succeeding?

5 pregnancy myths that just won't go away

When you're expecting, it often seems like everyone is keen to offer advice about what you should and shouldn't do in the interests of your health and wellbeing.

RPA hospital contacting mums after discovering vaccine storage fault

Sydney's Royal Prince Alfred Hospital (RPA) is trying to contact women who had babies at the facility after discovering a fault in a refrigerator containing vaccines.

'Nutella' not a baby name, French court says

A French court has blocked parents from naming their baby girl after the hazelnut spread Nutella, arguing it would make her the target of mockery.

Why I'm never calling myself 'just a mum' again

I’ve grown three human beings. I feed them, dress them, teach them, care for them and love them 24 hours a day. Yet for eight years, when I meet new people and they’ve asked me what I do, I tell them: “I’m just a mum”.

Rosie Batty named 2015 Australian of the Year

One year ago, Rosie Batty could not have imagined she'd be where she is. Tonight the grieving mum who put domestic violence on the national agenda was named Australian of the Year.

Five reasons to hug more

Hugging – some of us thrive on it, even depend on it – and then there are those who don't care for it really. So, are they missing out?

Help - my three-year-old has started throwing tantrums

My daughter never went through the "terrible twos" but began throwing wild tantrums shortly after her third birthday.

That's commitment

First peek at Sonia Kruger's daughter Maggie

"She smells so good, I could eat her," Kruger tells co-host David Campbell.

Mum assists in own caesarean surgery

A mum who partly delivered her own twins during a caesarean has encouraged other women to take control of their birthing experience.

How to handle common childhood regressions

Regression can be a natural and common part of development prompted by a variety of factors, but that doesn't make it less frustrating.

Disgruntled dad's pram ad goes viral

When buying a second hand pram, there are lots of things to take into consideration. 

Man discovers he's a dad after finding 55-year-old letter

Discovering you are about to father a baby is startling enough - never mind finding out you have a 61-year-old son.

15 thoughts mums have during a tantrum

Ranging from mild to feral and triggered by events both minor and major, tantrums certainly keep life interesting.

Natural pain relief in the early stages of labour

While managing labour pains on your own can be daunting, there are a number of natural pain relief options to help you cope until you are admitted to hospital.

Win an Octonauts prize pack

To celebrate the launch of Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield, a spectacular underwater adventure live on stage, we are giving away an amazing Octonauts prize pack to one lucky fan.

Download now: Essential Kids Activity Finder app

Got bored kids? Quickly find the best activities for kids wherever you are in Australia with the Essential Kids app.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

Forgotten Baby Syndrome claims the life of toddler

One baby dies every eight days in the back of a car in the US, victims of 'forgotten baby syndrome'.

For a brief time, I was touched by an angel

For a brief time, I was touched by an angel. You stole my heart, and changed me into the women I am today.

Chinese woman gives birth to quintuplets

After six years of trying for a baby, a couple’s dreams have come true many times over after the mum gave birth to quintuplets this week.

Chrissie Swan has reached her "sex quota"

Chrissie Swan says she and her partner have sex once a year due to her fear of falling pregnant.

Stars help save choking babies

It's an important lesson to learn, but one that busy new mums and dads might overlook until it's too late.

New Girl star Zooey Deschanel pregnant

Actress Zooey Deschanel is expecting her first child with her producer boyfriend Jacob Pechenik.

16 times 'dad reflexes' saved the day

Of course, in some cases they may be the ones who actually got their child into a precarious position in the first place, but we'll ignore that for now.

Couple's 'non-traditional' pregnancy announcement goes viral

Knowing you are not the father of your pregnant wife's baby would usually indicate a rocky relationship ahead for traditional parents.

The trials and tribulations of identical triplet newborns

Pip Donnelly is still playing spot the difference with her newborn identical triplets, Isabelle, Georgina and Frankie.

Win an Octonauts prize pack

To celebrate the launch of Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield, a spectacular underwater adventure live on stage, we are giving away an amazing Octonauts prize pack to one lucky fan.

Earthquake baby thriving five years on

Jenny Alexis is lucky to be alive after spending four days buried in the rubble of the 2010 Haitian earthquake, but now she's a thriving five year old.

Please don't say I'm lucky because I was adopted

On the one hand I was having a regular life with friends and sports and sleepovers and school. But I was also always wondering: Did my mother love me? What was wrong with me?

An open letter to non-parents who offer advice on child-rearing

Kitty, when you’re the parent of my child you’re welcome to wade in with an opinion – but until then, I’d prefer you to have a supportive ear and a glass of wine ready.

Couple arrested over baby gun video

A US couple faces charges after investigators say they found mobile phone videos showing the woman's 12-month-old daughter putting a handgun in her mouth.

NSW Health dumps 10-year limit on frozen embryos

A 10-year time limit on storing frozen embryos that were created with donor sperm has been dropped by the NSW government.

How my happy-go-lucky husband became a monster

Sharan Nicholson-Rogers watched her husband change from a happy-go-lucky police officer into an unpredictable man prone to violent and emotional outbursts.

Dads-to-be experience hormonal changes, too

Dads-to-be experience hormonal changes in line with their pregnant partners, a new study shows.

'They were just doing their job': mum of toddler killed in police chase gone wrong

"They were just doing their job. I feel so sorry for them. It is all just too sad."

Miscarriages to be formally recognised by NSW government

Women who miscarry will be able to obtain an optional "recognition of loss" certificate as a formal recognition of their often heartbreaking loss.

Cafe cubby house 'too noisy' for neighbours

Teenage parties, domestic disputes, or raucous late night pubs are the things that usually come to mind when you think neighbourhood noise complaints.

Dad films baby playing with snake

Most parents would not consider a snake an appropriate playmate for their baby, but a US dad who filmed his daughter playing with a python has defended himself against criticism.

Clever breastfeeding products

Check out this range of products designed to help make your breastfeeding journey more enjoyable, manageable and convenient.

 

Back to School Offer

Findababysitter.com.au

We've got you covered for this school year. Use www.findababysitter.com.au to meet local nannies now.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.