“You Have No Idea What You’re Getting Into…”

I love exactly half of my student teaching experience. That is, I like the teaching part, and the student half is frustrating beyond all belief.

None of my credential classes have had anything more than a passing relevance to pedagogy or being a good teacher, and most of what they teach will turn out to be absolutely useless, by the admissions of everyone I’ve talked to about it.

Therefore, I thought some of these suggestions for a credential program were pretty marvelous.

EDU 430: Seminar in Realities of Teaching

This course will address topics that have nothing to do with teaching your content. It will be taught by teachers who actually have current teaching experience.

Topics will include: how to avoid fights in your classroom and what to do when there is one, boy fights vs. girl fights, recognizing gang signs, farts and all the ways they disrupt your class, translating teenage lingo, cell phone technology and how it’s used and abused, spotting the cheater, conferences, talking with parents, writing recommendation letters and reading between the lines, controlling your emotions, acting, picking your battles, classroom disruptions, going with the flow, pregnancy — not yours, what to do if you catch kids having sex in school, recognizing drunk or high students and what to do, referring abuse, homelessness, various scenarios of being told to F off, flying under the radar, and many, many more.

A commenter there added “how to write grants” to that list. Brilliant.

Now I know what to ask my master teacher about tomorrow.

Moral of the story? Just because the People’s Republic of California mandates it doesn’t mean that it’s useful.


  1. Ha
    Good points.
    Not in college.

  2. farts and all the ways they disrupt your class

    … I’m speechless.

  3. If only college were as useful as the piece of sheepskin I got from leaving it.

  4. dkzody

    parent conferences when the student is lying, that’s another one I would like to see a college prof try to teach. Just left such a conference where a girl who doesn’t want to get up and get to school but tried to say she has anxiety attacks on her way to school. She is fine at lunch and her afternoon teachers spoke very well of her. When I asked her if she had friends, she said, sure. So, I’ve no idea why she has trouble getting TO school but no problem going home.

  5. Going to school inspires anxiety in a way going home does not, I guess. Or, she’s lying.

    More likely that she’s just coming up with lame excuses and hoping that it sticks, especially as the afternoon teachers don’t have any problems with her.

  6. certainabsurdity

    Glad you liked my post. However, it has nothing to do with California – so I’m not sure what’s up with your Moral of the Story…

  7. That was more from my observations of a California credential program at the beginning than your observations of credential classes in general.

    I projected specificity on your post, I’m afraid.

  8. Best of luck to you in your teaching career…

    My own career in education lasted a total of two years before I finally threw up my hands and got as far away from it as possible. So, I have a great respect for anyone who can do it and does it well.

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