Teaching now in a private school that has a school selling point of, “We teach each grade at a grade above”. I’m teaching 4th grade which is the lowest grade that I have ever taught and I have now decided that I am a true middle school teacher. I love the kids and they are really progressing but the day to day slowness is killing me. Now I have said that we are teaching at a grade above so I am technically teaching 5th grade in 4th grade. Guess what? I’m still teaching at their level. Sure there are some students who can learn at a higher level but in this day of age where everyone gets a trophy, everyone is also put in a class with every level of knowledge so I have smart kids, really smart kids, average kids, kids that are at a low level , and also one student who cannot read English and cannot write in it either. So I have all of these levels of students and I am supposed to teach them at a higher grade level.
This happens in every school. When I was in 6th grade and had moved on to the middle school, we all knew that we were in classes with students who were at our level of learning. We didn’t go home and tell our mom’s that we were not in the high achiever class. In today’s schools every one is a straight A student and every one is eventually going to Harvard!
I like my new school but I seriously worry about how we are making schools look good. We are not teaching the basics, we are teaching to look good. The students may be able to mimic the work done in class but are they really learning the material? Can they carry what they have so called learned and apply it to something else?
I feel that ours schools are doing an inservice to the majority of students in that we are forgetting to teach the basics before we progress with them onto further learning. You cannot build a car if you do not understand how to put all of the car parts together.