{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "My department head mentioned to me that there may be a high school teaching position opening in the future and they think I'd be good for it. I'm not sure I'd want to make the change because I've only ever taught middle school, (14 years!), and wonder how big the change in student attitude and behavior would be like? This year though, the kids I have are really draining and it's got me thinking. Would high school students be the same crazy behaviors or would their maturity make a big impact?", "post_id": "6141e70e7af87500215082ec", "reply_count": 23, "vote_count": 3, "bowl_id": "5c751b9f2f6b98001bc666f8", "bowl_name": "Teachers" }

My department head mentioned to me that there may be a high school teaching position opening in the future and they think I'd be good for it. I'm not sure I'd want to make the change because I've only ever taught middle school, (14 years!), and wonder how big the change in student attitude and behavior would be like? This year though, the kids I have are really draining and it's got me thinking. Would high school students be the same crazy behaviors or would their maturity make a big impact?

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For what it's worth, I've taught high school for 15 years, with a few 8th grade bells sprinkled throughout, and I found middle school far more exhausting. The high schoolers I encounter tend to be more evened out, and their maturity definitely helps. Of course it would depend on your demographics, what grades/levels you're teaching, etc.

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I've taught MS... It would take a lot to convince to ever go back to that level. Once you go to high school, you'll never go back.

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I have also taught MS (10 years). Moved to HS 7 years ago and have no desire to go back. One side note... I was teaching Math in MS. That part I liked, because I do not enjoy teaching Math in HS. I am now teaching Sociology and a Humanities course and it feels like I was promoted from my MS days. In my district, HS teachers are treated like adults by administrators. As a MS teacher, I felt like I was always being watched and had to account for every second of my day.

It depends on the student, but as a general trend, it does matter. What grade level would it be? Freshman as gong to be a lot closer to what you are used to, vs by Junior year they have mellowed a lot. In my experience, one difference is that middle school kids do still almost universally want your attention, even if they are "trying on" the persona of not caring. In high school, some kids genuinely have checked out. Both have pros and cons.

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I teach a STEM class at the middle school level and they're hoping to expand the offerings at the high school.

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What do you teach? I am a HS English teacher, and I LOVE teaching HS. You are dealing with young adults instead of kids like in MS.

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I teach STEM and really like it. The class uses failure as part of the learning process and somedays I'm worn out with kids who don't want to do anything, even once. I wonder if HS students are more motivated I guess?

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I never taught HS, but I was told by HS colleagues that the population of the upper HS (11-12) students feel like 👍 heaven, these students want to learn and they told me the level of discipline issues doesn’t exist… I know, talking to my daughter, (graduated 2020 from HS) they want to be treated like young adults… Good luck!

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Thanks!

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I spent a year at a middle school. The kids were fun, but they’re so young!!! I love my high schoolers! The challenges the kids face are different, but the maturity level is also different. A good dose of gentle sarcasm can diffuse most situations, most kids can laugh at themselves and understand their weaknesses, and they know what it takes to succeed even if they don’t always do it.

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I taught middle school a couple of years before moving to high school, and I will not go back to middle school .

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Three huge factors with HS: 1) The hormonal changes and neurological changes cause students to be totally different people by around 10th grade. If you teach freshmen long enough, it is not even arguable. 2) The age for dropping out is 16, at least in the states that I know of, so many students who would cause management issues are no longer in school. 3) Electives serve to give students the ability to self sort and so classes settle down a lot for several reasons.

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I think the only reason schools do it is to keep the money coming for that student. If schools were serious about caring for students, we would allow more latitude in how they get their diplomas. There is no good reason to essentially force 16 year olds to stay in school if they could finish their credits early and begin earning real wages or apprenticing for trade jobs. Our system is so broken and corrupt.

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Having taught both... Don't expect freshmen to be more mature than middle schoolers. If anything, they regress.. 9th graders have all the derp of MS and all the disaffectedness of HS and the combo is terrible. If you deeply love your content area, HS beats MS. You can go much deeper into it. (Unless it's a freshman core class, then see the above.) If you have a more goofy or lighthearted approach to teaching, MS beats HS. High schoolers take themselves very seriously and expect you to do the same. HS comes with a lot of extra pressures due to accreditation audits, graduation requirements, grades counting for college applications and scholarships, the need to keep enrollment up when kids have other options, etc. Be prepared for more documentation and paperwork. MS kids get genuinely, openly enthusiastic about neat lessons in a way that HS kids don't. On the other hand, high schoolers tend to engage more with their own learning. Misbehavior is less common at the HS level but when it does occur, the misbehaviors tend to be more serious. That doesn't necessarily mean that the HS in-class behavior is GOOD, though...they've just learned to keep negative stuff below the threshold of getting in trouble. That's my experience, for what it's worth, lol.

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I taught HS for 20 years...moved, now teach middle school....miss my HS students.

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I did high school for 10 years then moved to middle school… it took me over 2 years to adjust, it was a hard move but the reverse, in your case, would in my opinion be much easier. The amount of maturity that happens between the two is crazy wonderful and elevates much of the daily insanity of middle school. I would highly recommend the move. 👍🏼

Honestly, the more I think about it, the more it's not a MS vs HS question. I'd be happy teaching 6-7 or 11-12. I don't really want to teach 8-10.

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