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teaching burnout? Options
wood_butcher
Posted: Tuesday, February 28, 2012 11:24:41 AM
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Joined: 11/9/2011
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Location: Kansas, the land of Ahhhhs!
I'm starting to feel the burn so to speak and I was just wondering if anybody here has ever been or is in the same boat and what resources (books, movies, ect.) did you find that help get you back on the horse.

I have had a lot of outside influences keeping me from entirely focusing on my classes, we are in project mode, but I get the feeling that the classes are just going through the motions, just like myself.

Any thoughts, advice, or resources are greatly appreciated!

WB
mikeb
Posted: Tuesday, February 28, 2012 1:09:32 PM
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Joined: 3/7/2008
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Location: North Kingstown/RI
What type of products are you producing?
klandin
Posted: Tuesday, February 28, 2012 4:36:41 PM
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Joined: 6/1/2006
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Location: Connecticut
If you're bored, then I can guarantee your kids are too. So if you're bored, then try something radically new. Get out of your comfort zone and stretch yourself. It may be a bunch of extra work, but the excitement will remind you that this job can be fun.

Keith Landin
Woodshop instructor, Woodstock Academy
"Mens tua sit implementum acerrium in fabrica"
techedone
Posted: Tuesday, February 28, 2012 6:52:42 PM
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Joined: 8/23/2011
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Location: Leominster
I was there, what worked for me was changing schools. It was a very big decision but I am very happy and would do it again in a heart beat!
Giz
Posted: Tuesday, February 28, 2012 10:25:49 PM
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I think we need more info, brah!

How long have you been teaching?

What are the external pressures?

For me, there are many external concerns that frustrate me.

But when the tardy bell rings, most of those go away, and I'm able to lead the students in my shop the way I think I should.

Certainly, there are challenges within the classroom, but they pale before the other stuff that rains down upon us from the outside.

I do my best to let that stuff roll off my back and focus on what's in front of me.

Mostly, with the students in my shop, I can win the battles. The stuff that comes from outside, I can't.

Share more, please.
creighta
Posted: Wednesday, February 29, 2012 11:31:46 AM
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Joined: 1/16/2008
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Location: Georgetown/OH
It happens, especially with the stress of this position.

After Christmas every year I schedule a series of lessons that get us out of the shop completely. I do sheetmetal boxes using paper, I do drafting, and I do other classroom activities that are typically hard to fit in during this time such as measurement, board feet, and safety reviews (yes we cover safety prior to this, but you can't get too much review of it).

I have found that these few weeks "off" from the stress of ever impending danger is a nice change of pace, it is extremely educational for the kids, but they hate it so much that I can hold it over their heads as an alternative to shop for the next six weeks.

If you have computers, thin up something ridiculous and tell the kids to make it w/o giving any further guidance. I have done hovercrafts, airplanes, and catapults this way in the past.

wood_butcher
Posted: Tuesday, March 06, 2012 5:43:41 PM
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Joined: 11/9/2011
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Location: Kansas, the land of Ahhhhs!
Giz wrote:
I think we need more info, brah!

How long have you been teaching?

What are the external pressures?

For me, there are many external concerns that frustrate me.

But when the tardy bell rings, most of those go away, and I'm able to lead the students in my shop the way I think I should.

Certainly, there are challenges within the classroom, but they pale before the other stuff that rains down upon us from the outside.

I do my best to let that stuff roll off my back and focus on what's in front of me.

Mostly, with the students in my shop, I can win the battles. The stuff that comes from outside, I can't.

Share more, please.


I am in my second year teaching 5 preps-3 woodworking, 2 welding.

Outside influences-Wife is preggo with #4, we are a single income house, septic has given up the ghost, propane tank needs to be replaced. Just a lot of life issues.

Cab 1- We start out with a 4 joint box-mitre, rabbet/mitre, dado rabbet, and a regular rabbet, That way the kids know the basic ways to put into drawer bottoms or other box projects.
Then they have to find or design the next project. The kids all chose cedar chests for projects, some have opted to make them out of oak.
Then we cover jigs and work into a mass production project, this year we are building 40 Adirondak chairs. The kids have to develop the jigs that will make production easier. They have to design them in CAD and build a working example. We talk about flow charts and figure out a flow chart for production.

Last year we made mortise and tenon side side tables and dovetailed jewelry boxes. Mass production was a lasered clock project.

My wood working experience is not extensive, I think of it as basic+, I know how to use all the equipment very well and can build anything I have set out on.

I'm a follow the directions kind of guy and I really like having a model to follow, problem is I cannot find a model program to adopt on the internet.

If you have a curriculum map and want to share it with me, I would be eternally grateful. That way I could see what all other teachers are doing and work some new things into my mix.

I teach safety, show how to use all the machines, setup of jigs(panel slide, tenon jig, raised panel jig ect.). Designing a project, How to make a plan of procedure from a working drawing, then figure lumber for a BOM.
I guess I just do not exude building confidence. I hate sucking at something and want to be a better teacher, just don't know where to look for help.



buildingtrades
Posted: Wednesday, March 07, 2012 9:49:07 PM
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Joined: 2/17/2011
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Location: chester pa
Before I got the job teaching building trades, I worked as a union carpenter. Mainly outside in the elements heat, cold , rain.... so I just look out the window and get my mind back in the game. And when administration gets difficult I just remember some of the grumpy old foreman s I had over the years in the trade. And think life doesn't get better then this !!!!! Our shops are what we make them
Just my two cents
Eddie
dionrivard
Posted: Saturday, March 10, 2012 8:37:23 PM
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Joined: 3/10/2012
Posts: 0
Location: alameda ca
Just a few questions.
Are they making things that they designed?
Are they making anything that they will find personally useful?
Are they even interested in their own projects.

If the answer is NOT to any of these questions, maybe the answer could be yes.
I have found that when they are making something for themselves...
they tend to be more focused.

All of the stuff that happens before hand is just preparations for them taking charge of their own project and its purpose.
At that point you become a guide, no longer a teacher.
Then you can make suggestions on how to improve their designs, they then not just following your instructions.
Give it a shot
can't hurt
dionrivard
Posted: Saturday, March 10, 2012 8:48:24 PM
Rank: Newbie
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Joined: 3/10/2012
Posts: 0
Location: alameda ca
I forgot to mention that the Swedes look highly on the trades, and many school have at the center of their programs, woodworking. Perhaps you might take a look into the european way of doing things....
<http://woodworking.com/ww/Article/News_From_Sweden_7537.aspx>
<http://www.woodwork-magazine.com/index.php/archives/239>
<http://jameskrenov.com/>
<http://www.insidepassage.ca/>

take a look...

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