Each grade level has its perks – and its quirks.  We’ve talked to some of the best teachers in the biz and compiled some great reasons about why teaching THEIR grade is the best.  If you are scared to make a grade level change, or want to know some of the advantages of teaching at the different levels, read on!

Kindergarten

I LOVE teaching kindergarten, because the amount of growth that happens is astounchoosing curriculumding! Many students come in not recognizing the difference between a letter, number, or shape and leave being able to read and complete simple math. I also LOVE the fact that I get to be their first teacher and give them a LOVE for learning and school! – Abigail from Kindergarten Chaos

Kindergarten teachers are the foundation to a child’s’ education. We are responsible for creating the positive school experience. As a kindergarten teacher, I think we also see the most growth in a student in academically, emotionally, and socially. Teaching kindergarten is like watching the very hungry caterpillar in action. They eat and eat and eat all this knowledge and at the end of the school year they emerge ready to take on anything first grade throws at them. – Tiffani from Time 4 Kindergarten

1st Grade

1st grade is a magical year and always one of many firsts! Everyday events like losing a tooth or completing the monkey bars take on a new meaning- and are a big deal! First graders are also young enough to believe in the magic of holidays, which makes for many fun memories. Of course the amount of new skills and knowledge they gain is huge! They go from recognizing letters to getting lost in the adventures of a newly read book. Basically….first graders just rock! Their excitement, curiosity, and zest for life remind me of what truly matters. – Kayla from K’s Classroom Kreations

I used to think kindergarten was the sweet spot until I was moved to 1st. They are still in love with their teacher. They still have just like sponges. They’re the absolute perfect age because they still have SO much to learn and it’s my job to give it to them. They can actually learn through reading at this age and it’s seriously the BEST thing ever. 1st graders allow you to grab their imagination and take them on so many adventures in just a few short and sweet months. How many other grade levels still believe everything you say? Not many, lol. – Keri from Keri Brown

2nd Grade

Second graders armatching kids to curriculume as close to perfect as can be. They grow in independence as the year progresses. Plus, all one has to do to make them laugh is preface any joke with, “Here’s a joke.” 🙂 They’re huggy, optimistic, and believe in justice and goodness. I ? them! – Susan from Grade 2 Hullabaloo
Second grade is magical! It’s that special age where the kids are full of whimsy and open to everything, but have some critical skills like reading and writing in place. I’ve taught kinder and first previously, and adored it, but with second grade we’re getting to tackle some pretty amazing projects! Right now my students are planning their own businesses and applying for REAL “loans” from the school to start their own stores. We’ll host a real market here at school in a few weeks, and use the proceeds to buy a cow for a family in the developing world. The kids are at the perfect age where they have just the right skills mastered to be able to take on this project. They’re thrilled, and I’m loving the new opportunities that come with each new grade level! – Lindsey from Lindsey Goff Viducich — Whimsy Academy

3rd Grade4th grader with book

Third grade is that grade in which you’re not really learning to read, but starting to read to learn. The curriculum in science and social studies allows for easy integration with language arts. Math is challenging, but it is the grade level in which we get to teach probably the most important gateway skill: multiplication. Without multiplication, any higher level math like algebra is impossible. The students at this grade area still kids and enjoy simple humor, yet they now see the shades of gray when it comes to fairness. Finally, third grade is that transition grade between lower elementary and upper elementary. – Claudio from Two Boys and a Dad Productions

Third grade is the best. It is like the middle layer of a 3 layer cake. The filling that you have been dying to taste. By 3rd grade children are in a groove. They are independent, love learning, crafts and super excited to be at school. What we love the most is that you can have truly heartfelt conversation and really dig deep into learning. – Emily from Third and Goal

4th Grade

4th grade is the best because the awesome little humans are at a great age! They still look up to you, are incredibly curious, are still pretty tiny, but are developmentally able to blow you out of the water at the things they are able to do! Their writing becomes stronger and more creative. I love 4th grade! 🙂 – Stephanie from A Touch of Class Teaching

Fourth graders are still young enough to have no shame in saying they missed you when you were out sick. They are weird in the best ways. They get our jokes and are learning who they are. They still giggle when someone toots in class. The majority of the hormones and accompanying angst usually hits later in the year. Most fourth graders are independent. – Brandi from My Teacher Friend

5th Grade5th graders

This is my 19th year teaching, and I would have to say without a doubt that my favorite grade to teach is 5th grade. To me, 5th graders are the perfect age to make teaching enjoyable and make it challenging enough to keep it from getting boring. One of the best parts about teaching fifth grade is my students have a great sense of humor. They get jokes easier and are just genuinely funny at this age. This sense of humor shows up in their writing (which makes grading those writing prompts a little easier!). – Sandra from The Happy Learning Den

My kiddos are young enough to love school and their teacher but old enough to understand jokes and have a good time. The curriculum is also really fun in 5th grade. There are many ways to challenge every type of learner. I also LOVE doing STEM activities in my class and getting to see all of their creativity come out. – Amy from Lauermania

6th Grade5th grader

Everyone always looks at me strange when I tell them I love working in the middle school with my 6th graders. My students are inquisitive, fearless and eager to learn. Sometimes they give you excuses because they didn’t have their homework, but they are always willing to please me and make me happy. They are fearless when it comes to technology, I give them a task and they jump right in with no hesitation! I teach Life Science, and they always have questions and are curious about the natural world. It brightens my day when I give them information and they can connect it to a real life experience. I also love that they love to come to school and be involved. They are not in the “I’m to cool for school” stage just yet. – Deanna from Sweet Dee’s Science Shop

My kids are still young enough to be sweet and excited about things before the teenage blahs kick in. They are also old enough to work on really creative projects on their own and direct where their groups will go. – Amanda from Xclass to the Rescue

7th Grade

I love 7th grade because it we really are in the middle of it all. 7th graders can be completely mature one minute, and be excited silly the next minute by a sticker or game. Such a fun age! – Jenny from Wilcox’s Way

Middle school students walk the slippery slope between child and adult. They wear a facade of cockiness, but they still sleep with teddy bears. (Don’t tell them I told you that ?) – Darlene from Darlene Anne

8th Grade

8th Graders have a bad reputation as being stinky, stubborn, full of attitude, and emotional wrecks. Though that may be true at times (NOT all the time!), 8th Grade is actually an amazing year to teach a student. At this age, they are intellectually capable of coming up with their own ideas, opinions, and be able to hold a near-adult conversation. They are beginning to discover so much about themselves and the world around them in a way they have never experienced before. Though they are sometimes able to make you feel like you are actually dealing with young adults, they are also still kids. As a teacher, I can still act goofy and do classroom activities and games that probably would not jive with a high school student. 8th Graders are kids, but you can see them become the adults they will soon be! – Derrick from Derrick’s US History Market

I never dreamed that I would become an eighth grade teacher, but once I started working with this age group I was hooked! Each time I share with someone that I am an eighth grade math teacher, I am met with the same type of response: “Whoa, that’s tough!” “That age group… and math?!” “It must be difficult to keep them interested.” I always smile polibig kidstely and explain that I love my job and my kids. Today I will share just a little bit of the WHY. 5) By eighth grade, there is an enormous range of math abilities. I love the challenge that brings! I am very passionate about differentiating instruction based on the needs of all my students. 4) The content is relevant and fun! I enjoy developing hands-on, discovery-based learning experiences for students. There are so many real world applications to what we are learning. 3) As an eighth grader myself, I struggled with all sorts of social drama so I strive to be the teacher that I needed when I was in middle school. 2) I love the rigor required to inherit students with their seventh grade routines and skills and prepare them for high school expectations! 1) Most of all, eighth graders are so fun! They love competition, practical jokes, and anecdotes. Relationship building is key to a successful classroom. In my classroom, we all thrive on our ideal balance between expected routines and goofiness. – Amanda from Free to Discover

9th Grade

9th graders are the perfect blend of eagerness to grow up and openness to the world. I love freshman as they discover the “big” world of high school. I start of the year reminding them that they can be whomever they want to be. Freshman year is a year to start a fresh. (But don’t tell my seniors how much I love my freshmen!) – DocRunning from Education with DocRunning

I love teaching freshman while others loathe it. I love starting them off with a positive experience in ELA. New to high school. My grade nines are still watching Nickelodean in secret. They openly love Justin Bieber and talk about WWE wrestling like it’s a soap opera! – Danielle from Danielle Knight

10th Grade

Sophomore year is a year of change. Not quite freshmen anymore, but without that “too cool” upperclassmen attitude, students are still growing into their identity at this age while gaining independence (license!). I love that they are still open to trying new things, from drawing on desks to improv comedy, and don’t take themselves too seriously. – Lindsay from Lindsay Ann Learning

11th Grade

Juniors are so fun! They are at a criticalbig kids point in their education, so this year matters for college and most of them try hard to do well. They are full of ideas and opinions, and rarely shy away from sharing them. Unlike freshmen, who I’ve taught for over a decade, juniors “get it;” they are older and more experienced in the world, so they start to really understand why education matters. And, even with all that, they’ll still go crazy for a sticker or candy prize or reward. – Melissa from Making Meaning with Melissa

I love teaching 11th grade because it is the year that students really start deciding what they want to do with their lives! They are starting to prepare for college or their life after high school and they are still motivated and engaged without falling into that senior slump. It’s a lot of fun to see how much they learn and grow as they start to reflect on their futures. – Katie from I Heart Teaching Science

12th Grade

Senior year is such an exciting time in a person’s life! Students are deciding where they want to go to college or work and trying to figure out what they want their future to be. It is also a very challenging time. There is a lot of pressure for good grades, high achievement in athletics, & making life-altering decisions. Parents and students tend to struggle with their relationships whether it is over financial stress in trying to pay for college or just both sides realizing that childhood is soon coming to an end so their relationship will be forced to change. As a teacher, I truly enjoy being part of this exciting and challenging time. Being a senior teacher is the best! – April from Cullom Corner

I absolutely love teaching seniors! Watching them mature from the beginning of the year to graduation is remarkable. It is so rewarding to help them in their career and college searches. I also find it both challenging and exciting to prepare them for their future careers or post-secondary learning. – Jenna from Doc Cop Teaching

Final Thoughts

They say it takes a special person to teach Kindergarten.  We believe that is true for each and every grade in a child’s education – from 5 year-old kinders to graduating seniors.  We salute you teachers and know that our kids are well taken care of, at every age and stage along the way.

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Why My Grade Level ROCKS

One thought on “Why My Grade Level ROCKS

  • April 4, 2017 at 1:04 am
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    Love this! Personally I will always be a fan of 8th graders but it was so fun to see all the different points of view!

    Reply

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