Sunday, November 29, 2015

Lessons From Primary to Intermediate

Hello friends! It's Katie from Simply Creative Teaching!
I've been a bit absent for awhile, and I sincerely apologize. If you follow my personal blog, you may know my husband and I moved to Indiana. As a result, I landed a new job at a wonderful school, BUT now I'm a SIXTH GRADE teacher! It's quite the jump for me, considering I spent 4 years in second grade. 

For awhile I had NO idea what I was going to blog about for you wonderful Primary Pack readers. To be honest, I was a little intimidated. I didn't want to let you all down with a post that wasn't helpful to primary teachers. Plus, I kept thinking, I don't have even have cute Pinterest/Blog-worthy pictures to share with you all!

I've decided I'm just going to give you some honest, REAL teacher talk. Nothing super cute. No catchy pictures that are going to blow your mind. Just some TRUTH.

You know when you begin a new year of teaching, you feel refreshed. You feel excited about all of the great plans you have. You promise yourself you're going to do x, y, and z to make your year run smoothly. This year... I did NOT feel that. When I interviewed at my new school, they had two positions: K and 6th. And I prayed and prayed and prayed that IF they offered me a job that I would get K...


I was flattered that I'd come across well enough that I'd somehow convinced my principal into thinking I could teach 6th graders, but to be perfectly honest, thinking about teaching 11 year olds made me want to crawl into a hole. I seriously, without a doubt in my mind, thought I was NOT going to survive this year with big kids.

And I wish I could tell you that once school started everything was all butterflies and unicorns and rainbows... but it wasn't. I cried EVERY SINGLE DAY when I came home that first week of school. 

But now it's December. And you know what? I'm surviving. And, while I still TOTALLY miss the sweet world of primary, I don't cry everyday. I don't hate my job. 

And the kids? Well, they're kinda AWESOME. 

They challenge me to think outside my box of teaching tools. They are SERIOUSLY funny. They are competitive, honest, loud, fun, brave, loyal, sweet, adventurous, smart, creative, and SO much more. And as a result, I'm learning to be more adventurous, creative, loud, fun, and brave.

Over the summer I framed these posters to hang in my classroom because I thought they'd be good reminders for my 6th graders. And you know what? They're good reminders for their teacher, too.
Click the picture for the link to these free posters.
So why did I write this? Honestly, I hope that we can all step outside our comfort zones. Whether you've moved grades or schools or are still teaching the same grade you've always taught, we MUST step outside our comfort zones. Try NEW teaching strategies. Get more CREATIVE. Let your kids be loud and adventurous, and BE LOUD AND ADVENTUROUS WITH THEM! 

Each and every year you teach, make it BETTER and TOTALLY DIFFERENT than the year before. You might cry about changing (like I did still do), but you could also LEARN a whole lot - about yourself AND about your students.
Now Simply Creative Teaching :)


  1. Wow, 6th grade! I think I'd probably cry everyday too (I teach K). Thanks for your honesty and encouraging words for all of us..even if we love our grade level and have been there a while, we need to push ourselves out of our comfort zones as well.


  2. Katie!! I LOVE this post! Thanks for keeping it real! You are amazing! I still don't know how you're doing it, but you are and you are rocking it!! (P.S. We need to get a new crayon signature made for you!)

  3. Thanks for sharing your story Katie! It's a great lesson to all. xoxo, Amy

  4. I feel your pain, friend. I once moved from third to sixth and it was one of the most difficult things I've done. I put in for a transfer back to third as soon as I could. Ironically, I grew to love it for a while and withdrew my transfer request. Things definitely get better, but it takes time! :)