Is Teaching worth it?

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    I want to become a PE Teacher in a Secondary School but I want to know whether the positives out weigh the negatives. I've heard that the pay compared to the amount of hours and extra workload that Teachers have to take home isn't worth it? Is this true? What's the average daily or weekly schedule for a Secondary Teacher? How many hours do they work in a day?
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    This is a largely subjective question based on so many factors. For me, the answer is no, it is not worth it.*

    The hours that a teacher puts in can vary dramatically from age range, subject, how many years teaching and even school. It goes without saying that the longer you've been teaching, the faster you become at planning and things like that. You will also have lessons planned from the previous years to reuse. This is something I am finding in my second year of teaching. This does not take away the substantial amount of admin and sheer bureaucracy that comes with the job though.*

    Honestly? It's not the workload that makes me hate my job. It's the blame. I teach A-Level and the lack of accountability on the students just makes me so angry I cannot deal with it. I have bent over backwards for my students and yet I get the blame when a student might get a C instead of a B, when they are the ones who have 60% attendance besides my nonstop intervention. I am the one who gets pulled into the office and asked "so what can you do better this year?". I don't have the patience to deal with it. It just frustrates me to no end. My boss knows full well it's the students' fault and yet we have to sit there and give the same rehearsed answers about increasing assessment and feedback blah blah blah.

    Rant!! Sorry! Might give you a good insight into a typical frustration of a teacher. Of course my frustrations are quite based around the fact I teach to an exam. It's not all that different when a year 9 isn't achieving their target level though, for example.

    Workload is tough and yes also a potential deal breaker for me. It's not just the workload that carries over to your life though. Everything does. It becomes your life. If you enjoy it (some do) then it's fine. But I don't want my job to become my life anymore. Not when I don't even enjoy it.

    Average day of a teacher? I'll give you an average nday on my pgce because that's when I taught secondary. In for 7 30am. Print resources make sure I was set for the day. Tutor group at 8:30. 9am lessons start. Might have a couple of hours free in the day to plan more lessons (also over lunch). Stay behind until 6pm to plan. Go home, have dinner and then plan until 11pm. Bed. Repeat. Bear in mind that as a trainee you have WAY more free periods to plan. Like double.*

    I really wish I could give more positivity about teaching. I really do. It makes me sad to hear how the profession has changed. It only takes a brief scan through the TES forums to see how disillusioned people are with this career nowadays. I love elements of it. When you have a good lesson and the students ask interesting questions and have interesting discussions I thrive of it. I also love my students dearly and I love helping them. These elements are sadly not enough to outweigh the negatives.*
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    There are so many reasons for and against, its a really tough call. There is a free book about whether teaching is worth it or not on amazon by an author called David Higson, he goes into a lot of detail about all the pros and cons and helps you make the right decision for you, might be worth giving it a read. It is slightly aimed for primary teaching but the can still be read for secondary the same really.

    Teaching is a love of labour tbh, if you dont love it then its a difficult job for anyone to do. You just need to do a bit of research and find out for yourself what suits you best.
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    I work in the independent sector so feel free to take what I say with a pinch of salt

    I've been teaching English & Humanities for the past 8 years. I teach a 23-hour timetable with no repeat lessons in any given week. On top of that I'm also Head of Year 11 (although this involves nowhere NEAR as much admin as in the UK, I'm led to believe) and I tutor for 3 hours a week. So 26 teaching hours per week + 2-3 hours a week on Head of Year stuff (not including any meetings with parents that may arise).

    So I try to get in to school between 8.00 and 8.15 (I live an hour and a quarter's commute away, so this can be tough). I try to do my photocopying/printing etc after teaching is over for the day so that I *don't* have to do it in the morning (you know that's exactly when the photocopier will jam/the printer will run out of ink etc ). Tutor time is at 8.45 and our school days are long: I can be teaching even on my normal timetable (i.e. not including the private tuition) from 9.00 or 10.00 until 6pm. But some days I can have as little as 3 hours' contact time while on other days I can have as many as 7, so it's not a very balanced timetable, but does for the most part mean I get to leave work at work.

    Planning is something else I try to do at the end of the day or in a free period rather than at the start of the day. It DEFINITELY gets quicker with time and I try to annotate my lesson plans during or at the end of a lesson if I've added something, not needed to do it, or if I would change something. That way I can update it easily on the digital copy at a later time; they're ever-changing beasts I am also aware, though, that lesson planning expectations in my school are nowhere near what's expected elsewhere: our lesson plans are hardly ever inspected and as such rarely exceed half a page. (But perhaps contrary to popular belief you CAN get everything that you need into a lesson plan of that length.) If I'm going for an interview or having an observation I will do the whole 3-page job - and I am aware that that's what's expected in many UK schools on a daily basis EVERY lesson.

    I personally would say it's worth it; as I've said in other threads here, teaching is never boring and every day is different. I teach students aged 12-18 and love using my subjects every day. On the whole working with teenagers is fun: they're principled, curious and caring. However, I do recognise that I'm able to have a work-life balance (despite my long commute) in ways that UK teachers are perhaps not able to do (I live and work overseas). I do worry, though, about what will happen when I have children as my school doesn't have a good history of being sympathetic towards its teachers who are parents (e.g. they won't rejig the timetable for you or anything to ensure that you can leave to pick up your child from nursery). So to my mind it is worth it - BUT it depends on your school, its policies, and how supportive they are.
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    (Original post by Airfairy)
    This is a largely subjective question based on so many factors. For me, the answer is no, it is not worth it.*

    The hours that a teacher puts in can vary dramatically from age range, subject, how many years teaching and even school. It goes without saying that the longer you've been teaching, the faster you become at planning and things like that. You will also have lessons planned from the previous years to reuse. This is something I am finding in my second year of teaching. This does not take away the substantial amount of admin and sheer bureaucracy that comes with the job though.*

    Honestly? It's not the workload that makes me hate my job. It's the blame. I teach A-Level and the lack of accountability on the students just makes me so angry I cannot deal with it. I have bent over backwards for my students and yet I get the blame when a student might get a C instead of a B, when they are the ones who have 60% attendance besides my nonstop intervention. I am the one who gets pulled into the office and asked "so what can you do better this year?". I don't have the patience to deal with it. It just frustrates me to no end. My boss knows full well it's the students' fault and yet we have to sit there and give the same rehearsed answers about increasing assessment and feedback blah blah blah.

    Rant!! Sorry! Might give you a good insight into a typical frustration of a teacher. Of course my frustrations are quite based around the fact I teach to an exam. It's not all that different when a year 9 isn't achieving their target level though, for example.

    Workload is tough and yes also a potential deal breaker for me. It's not just the workload that carries over to your life though. Everything does. It becomes your life. If you enjoy it (some do) then it's fine. But I don't want my job to become my life anymore. Not when I don't even enjoy it.

    Average day of a teacher? I'll give you an average nday on my pgce because that's when I taught secondary. In for 7 30am. Print resources make sure I was set for the day. Tutor group at 8:30. 9am lessons start. Might have a couple of hours free in the day to plan more lessons (also over lunch). Stay behind until 6pm to plan. Go home, have dinner and then plan until 11pm. Bed. Repeat. Bear in mind that as a trainee you have WAY more free periods to plan. Like double.*

    I really wish I could give more positivity about teaching. I really do. It makes me sad to hear how the profession has changed. It only takes a brief scan through the TES forums to see how disillusioned people are with this career nowadays. I love elements of it. When you have a good lesson and the students ask interesting questions and have interesting discussions I thrive of it. I also love my students dearly and I love helping them. These elements are sadly not enough to outweigh the negatives.*
    This.

    It's not worth the tears, blood and sweat that come with it.
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    I would not worry about the negatives of teaching such as marking and work load, as a trainee teacher myself this year the positives far outweigh the negatives .
    To want to be a teacher, it is a life choice rather than just applying for 'any old job'. As a teacher you are committed to filling the future generation with the basic life skills and knowledge they need today, tomorrow and for the many years to come. If you are only thinking about the pay of this job then you maybe need to think about whether teaching is right for you.

    Since I have started my training, bare in mind that we do not receive a full time wage for doing this but you are in school full time, the positives of seeing a child grow, smile and say thank you makes you feel that you are doing something worth while.
    Throughout my training sessions I have learnt different ways that you can create a positive learning environment in your classroom such as through creativity and how this can make teaching 'yours'.
    You have to remember you will always leave a stamp on your children no matter what you say and it is that facts that should make you want to teach.

    Marking can be hard, certainly tiring at times, but when you get that 'one' book where they have just shone out or improved majorly from your last feedback allows you to leave your school feeling you have achieved something certainly not just for your child but for yourself too.
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    (Original post by Amy22ups)
    I would not worry about the negatives of teaching such as marking and work load, as a trainee teacher myself this year the positives far outweigh the negatives .....
    What a refreshing attitude - good on you, lol!

    I love my job - from 9am until 3:30pm. Then I tear my hair out over marking, meetings and dealing with annoyed parents.

    But as the above poster says, when you're marking a book and you find that child who's suddenly got it or has really improved on their previous work based on some feedback you gave them the day before it makes it worth it. When you've been out of school for a few days and return to joyful shouts of "Miss xxx, You're back!!!", it's worth it. When a parent or child thanks you for your hard work at the end of the year (yes, I keep the cards .... some of them, anyway!), it's worth it.
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    Hmm what a load of negativity.

    It really does depend on you. If you're resilient and can easily overcome a **** day or some criticism, you will enjoy it.

    I get to school for 8-8:20 to set up and prepare myself. Tutor is at 8:55, then I have 4-5 lessons a day.
    All of my lessons are planned a week in advance so I never stay up past 10pm on a weekday.

    Friday evening and Saturday morning, I'll create lessons for the next week.

    Repeat.

    In short, it is what you make it.
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    After I finish my degree in English Literature and History (which I haven't started yet as I'm in my last year of A Levels), I'm going to go into teaching in a secondary school most likely through Schools Direct. My English Lit teacher (who is taking over the school as head teacher in January) has taught me how difficult teaching can be. Long hours, stroppy kids and pretty average pay. It might not be the most glamorous job in the world - but it's what you put into a child's learning experience that counts. Some kids will come to school and hate every second of it and come out with terrible grades, that's up to them. But if you can inspire a single child to go above and beyond in a subject, then I believe you're doing the job well. I've been inspired by my teachers to go into teaching because I want to do what they do - inspire kids in one of the most important subjects that the national curriculum gives them. Seeing a child have a spark moment where they suddenly get it or seeing a child achieve above and beyond what they expected is what I want to see. I don't want to teach for the salary or the long hours. I genuinely think that teaching is what you make it, no matter what subject you teach. If you want to teach PE in a secondary school you are going to experience kids who will give every excuse under the sun not to partake (hands up I was one of those) and you'll see others that will flourish because it's what they are good at. If you inspire someone enough, you could potentially give them a career in your chosen subject, and they will have wanted to go into that because of you.

    That's my thoughts anyway. As other people have said, it's what you make it. But seeing children get something that they might not have before and actually enjoy education is what I think education is about - giving them the tools to be successful once they have left you.
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    it's about as worth it as me when I use l'oreal
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    I will say no - I saw what it did to my mum. She ended up very unwell - as in loosing weight, having nervous breakdowns and she suffers from cluster headaches (otherwise known as suicide headaches, these are the considered the worst pain a human can experience), which got very bad. She would be off for 3 days at a time in bed. She was so stressed she had to take long-term sick-leave, it really was that bad then got early retirement. And pretty much all of her teaching friends have also left now or are trying to get out now.

    And just to give you an idea of the workload - my mum left early in the morning, didn't get until 6pm then worked in the study until 9-10pm at night. sometimes she was so stressed she couldn't sleep and ended up in the kitchen doing lesson plans! This is not a job you can escape from. Retirement age has been increased, the pay isn't great, you have inspections and have to now meet grade requirements set by the government - you're forced to focus on the top pupils and the pupils that struggle the most, the average pupils aren't cared about by the government. It's not the fun rewarding career it seems - my mum loved teaching children but the pressure from the government is so horrendous now it's not worth it. She was a primary school teacher by the way. So she didn't get to see my sister or I a whole lot during the week.

    Oh and holidays. Yep, those were spent marking and lesson planning as well. It traps you and imprisons you! There are plenty of other careers out there that involve working with and educating children, but with far less stress. Apparently the education secretary used be someone who'd been a teacher so she knew what she was doing, now the education department is run by idiots who've never set foot in a classroom or sat down and actually realised all the work they're setting teachers, all those targets. My mum became a teacher because she enjoys teaching children, not because she enjoys working all-hours on lesson plans.
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    Worth what? The money? No. The workload? No. The stress? No.

    But what does matter is that at the end of it all you make a difference to young people's lives and get a chance to help shape their future in a positive way. That is worth it in my opinion.


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    My son's aunt is a primary school teacher in the Republic of Ireland. Constantly stressed, lost a lot of weight, had to take a lot of time off. She now does a job share, but it still stresses her out. She can't wait to retire.
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    I know someone who is a qualified teacher but now works as a Classroom Assistant. She gets half the pay a teacher does, but she does half the workload. She turns up at nine and goes home at three. End of. No lesson planning, no meetings, no parents to have to deal with. She's very happy with her decision.
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    Yes being a TA would be far less stressful. Or a supply teacher. My mum initially started off as a supply teacher which she really enjoyed as it involved far less stress, planning, etc. She just got to teach.
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    Tbh with any job, there are a lot of hours that u have to put into the jib after ur designated work time has finished in order to show u are motivated to do this job etc. I doubt there are many jobs out there that give a fair amount of pay for the amount if hours the employees are actually putting in. Tbh if ur not too money motivated and u would cherish the feeling that u have helped a child excel in their education, helped them so they may use these skills later on in life, and then even helped them pass GCSEs and maybe A levles. Can u really put a figure on that? Tbh most teachers say that thats the best feeling ever and its genuinely worth all the hours they had to put in.
    And most teachers have quite a good wage tbh. Have u seen the cars they drive? The latest Fords etc. Someone on a low wage couldnt even get that so the pay isnt too bad.

    If ur still struggling, sit down, make a list of pros and cons for teaching and wichever outweighs the other, it might help u choose if u really want to do it or not. Try it and see what happens
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    (Original post by Amy22ups)
    To want to be a teacher, it is a life choice rather than just applying for 'any old job'. As a teacher you are committed to filling the future generation with the basic life skills and knowledge they need today, tomorrow and for the many years to come. If you are only thinking about the pay of this job then you maybe need to think about whether teaching is right for you.
    Any job is a "life choice" though? What is it with some people in teaching that push the sentiment of putting up with crap just because...? I'm not sure how to finish that sentence (perhaps you do?)

    This kind of thing is keeping good people away from the profession, they're going elsewhere.
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    (Original post by Findlay6)
    I get to school for 8-8:20 to set up and prepare myself. Tutor is at 8:55, then I have 4-5 lessons a day. All of my lessons are planned a week in advance so I never stay up past 10pm on a weekday. Friday evening and Saturday morning, I'll create lessons for the next week. Repeat.
    You're kinda vague there - you say that you never stay up past 10pm, that's your bed time or....? PLEASE don't say that you're working from 8am to 10pm D:
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    (Original post by thedayismyenxmy)
    I don't want to teach for the salary or the long hours. I genuinely think that teaching is what you make it, no matter what subject you teach.
    Well from the looks of it you'll certainly be getting long hours without much salary. If that's not an issue for you, great. I find it a bizarre stance to take for a position of employment though (which is a trading of your time for money). I also find that it puts off many decent people from the profession, and seems to leave too many people who just want to be loved rather than people who're actually passionate and good at a particular subject. Many of them see teaching and the nonsense attached to it and keep walking. Seems like something that would be good to change.
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    (Original post by ithinkso)
    You're kinda vague there - you say that you never stay up past 10pm, that's your bed time or....? PLEASE don't say that you're working from 8am to 10pm D:
    Lol no. Bed time.
    There's occasions where I'll be at school until 9pm (parents evenings) and will have to do some admin when I get home, or some night I'll rebel and stay up later.
    Usually I'll get home at 4 and will work (If I need to) until 6, then chill until bed.
 
 
 
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