I keep hearing over and over again, "7th grade is the worst grade to teach." Is it really true? Is it just this particular group of students? Is it me?
I know this is a pivotal time in their lives (though, what time in our lives isn't pivotal). It's a time when they're just coming into their own and learning to find out where they fit. This is the time when they begin to decide for themselves what they value as "right" and "wrong." So where is my place in this? I'm supposed to be teaching English Language Arts, but I find myself teaching them more about respect, how to make good choices, how to have courage and be accountable.
It's taking a lot of patience, patience that I've had to build up because I didn't have much of it to begin with. It's also taking a lot of energy that I should be using to teach content and ELA skills. Teaching 7th grade is so emotional. I wish I didn't take things so personally, but it's my personality to take things personally. I wonder if I'd feel differently about my role as a teacher if I were teaching another grade or if I were more...detached.