UK4Life, on 26 December 2013 - 06:40 PM, said:
At 25 you're teaching high school? Do the kids still take you seriously despite only being 7 years younger than you?
Actually I was teaching at 22-24... I quit after two years until the whole standardized testing and Common Core crap fad turns into something a little bit more sensible... I knew it was getting bad but I didn't realize how insane it was until I got in the system. Not sure if that's gonna happen any time soon, but I'll keep my certification up anyway.
I told my kids I was 35, grew out a pretty good bear and mustache, and put on about 30 pounds so my freshmen classes believed it. The seniors were smart enough to know I was in my 20's but it worked out decently. Obviously I had to take a completely different approach than someone older would take... First month of my first year was pretty rough but after I figured out a good balance of discipline and joking around things started working pretty smoothly. You get less respect for age, lack of experience and wisdom, etc. but you can make up for that with being able to relate to them better. I gave free guitar lessons after school, coached, helped kids put music behind poetry, etc.
It's definitely hard to be taken seriously when you're not much older than the people you're teaching, but luckily for me I don't take myself that seriously anyway, so I was able to work around that and still have pretty decent learning most of the time. If I'd tried to be a no-nonsense, strict, by-the-book teacher it'd have failed majorly.