Being An Education Major At The University Of Louisville

Being An Education Major At The University Of Louisville

What it's REALLY like.
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The College of Education really is its own entity on the University of Louisville campus. As different as we all are, we have one thing in common—our passion for education and the hardships of being an education major that our good friends outside of the CEHD just don’t understand.


1. Field hours...

of them.

When and where the University tells us to.

2. They enter their assignments to Blackboard, we enter ours to

If nothing else will cause us to lose our sanity, LiveText will.

3. Student teaching.

Aka working 40 hours per week for 15 weeks with no pay (but paying full time college tuition for it) while meeting for class once a week to debrief, drown in lesson plans, cry, etc.

4. The word "HAT" means something totally different to us.

HATs are the longest, most intense assignments that our professors highly encourage us not to do the night before, because it will turn out terribly… But we often accept the challenge and get an 'A' on it anyway.

5. KTIP

Though some call it hell, it is both a blessing and a curse that we have one of the most intense teacher internship programs in the country.

6. By the way, everything is an acronym.

Such as IEP, KFETS, DOK, ELL, FERPA, IDEA, CCSS, NCLB (which we all hate), etc.

7. Speaking of KFETS...

There’s this cool new website where we have to go back and enter our 200 field hours one by one… Some of us haven’t even started yet!

8. Non-education majors underestimate the complexity of lesson planning

There are templates, and they are the most detailed templates to ever exist. A lesson plan isn’t a lesson plan until you have provided ten pages of every last detail and rationale.

9. There is no such thing as over-preparing. In fact, we will NEVER be prepared.


Ever. Expect the unexpected.

10. We get it, we won’t make THAT much money.

We are underestimated, underpaid, and underappreciated. We know. We aren’t in it just for the money, though. Our job itself is rewarding.

11. We understand that we can't win when under evaluation.

Were you thorough in your teaching? Not good enough, students need more time to talk and not just be fed information.

Did you give students time to talk and limit the amount of information that you gave them? Not good enough, they’re not learning if you’re not teaching.

Did you include group work? You shouldn’t have.

Did they work individually? You should have put them into groups.

12. It takes a lot for us to avoid engagement when students try to argue.

13. We love school supply shopping every semester/buying things for our future classrooms.

14. “You’re brave.”


Very much so!

15. Standardized testing…

Many of our classroom conversations are centered around standardized testing. And we get fired up.

16. We don’t even know where to begin or end when someone asks us why we want to teach…

Just take a minute to imagine a world without teachers.

17. We are a house divided in politics but standing together when it comes to education.

Hashtag education was never meant to be at the federal level.

18. We are constantly coming up with ways to make things interesting to students.

Shakespeare is cool you guys, OK?

19. Between class assignments and Pinterest, we have already designed our future classrooms.

20. We all have this chart handy somewhere.

21. We are learning all of this new technology that wasn’t allowed or even invented when we were in school.

Well, back in my day…

22. We’re way too comfortable with each other.

The CEHD building is our second home. Non-education classes are weird because we aren’t with our crew. We’re even friends with our professors/instructors.

23. You watch YouTube, we watch the teaching channel.

24. Everything our teachers did in school suddenly makes sense.

All of the things that we hated. Pop quizzes, being told to pipe down, dress code… It all makes sense now. We have become who we said that we would never be.

25. “Your students are going to hit on you.”

…I’ll just leave that there.

26. “Teaching is easy as long as you know the content.”

HA. HA. HAHAHA. HAHA. HA!

Let’s see you manage a class of 30 different children while teaching a topic that they are completely uninterested in.

27. You have already started a book collection for your classroom.

28. “You’re so lucky that you’re going to get summers off.”

Kind of. We will kind of get summers off. We work in an ever-changing, every day is different, work is brought home with us field. We need and deserve some breaks.

29. We are so excited to graduate and start teaching!


It doesn't matter how much work getting our degree is, we all know that the outcome will be worth it.

Cover Image Credit: Odyssey

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Getting Straight A's In College Is Not Worth Failing Your Mental Health

A's are nice, but you are more than a letter.

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The idea of getting an A on every paper, every exam, every assignment, seems great. It can be known as a reassurance of our hard work and dedication to our 4+ classes we attend every single day.

Losing sleep, skipping meals, forgetting to drink water, skipping out on time with friends and family; these are the things that can occur when your letter of an A is what you are living for.

You are worth more than the grade letter, or the GPA number on your transcript.

Listen, don't get me wrong, getting A's and B's definitely is something to feel accomplished for. It is the approval that you did it, you completed your class, and your hard work paid off.

But honey, get some sleep.

Don't lose yourself, don't forget who you are. Grades are important, but the true measurement of self-worth and accomplishment is that you tried your best.

Trying your best, and working hard for your goals is something that is A-worthy.

Reserve time for yourself, for your sanity, your health, your mental health.

At the end of the day, grades might look nice on a piece of paper, but who you are and how you represent yourself can be even more honorable.

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My Future Career Is More Than A 'Glorified Babysitter' Position, Despite What You May Think

I am an education major and extremely proud of it.

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This is a topic that has been on my heart a lot this week. As an Education major, I've heard it all. "Do you know how much teachers make?" Yes. "You ACTUALLY like kids?!?" Yes, I LOVE them. "Why would you do that to yourself?" Because I love it. Because I love being an Education major, I've become extremely passionate about defending it. However, I'm getting tired of feeling like I have to.

This career choice is something that I'm proud of. I know that being a teacher means sacrificing several things. I know that it means sacrificing your financial security. I know that it means sacrificing your ability to not be constantly thinking about 30 other kiddos all of the time. I know that I'll be sacrificing my right to be selfish. If you think about it, everything that a teacher does is utterly selfless. They dedicate their entire college career and teaching career to make sure that YOU understand the material. They spend several chunks of their own money on their classroom to provide an environment that enhances your learning. It's selfless. And it takes a person who recognizes that fact to be a teacher.

Teaching also has many dimensions, that nobody actually thinks about. For example, the class description for one of my classes says that it "Focuses on multicultural and interdisciplinary literature appropriate for middle grades students; implements and evaluates effective multicultural, interdisciplinary instruction through selection, use and development of literature in middle grades classroom" (TAMU catalog). Within this class, I was required to authenticate texts (make sure that they're culturally appropriate), learn about how to build a culturally-diverse classroom library, and how to teach without microaggressions. And these things only scratch the surface of the content that I was required to know for this class. People seem to forget that this is only one aspect of teaching, making sure everyone feels included socially and culturally. So please tell me how "glorified babysitter" fits into this description.

Also, good teachers work extremely hard. A good teacher knows that every child is on a different level and teaches so that each child understands that material. Good teachers present the material in a way that visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learners can understand. They use a strategy called differentiation to "instruct a diverse group of students, with diverse learning needs, in the same course, classroom, or learning environment" (Glossary of Education Reform). Also, there will always be special education kiddos who come into the general education classroom for a subject or two, and it's important that good teachers have a lesson prepared specifically for that student that meets their IEP goals. These IEP goals are "Annual goals are statements that identify what knowledge, skills and/or behaviors a student is expected to be able to demonstrate within the period of time beginning with the time the IEP is implemented until the next scheduled review" (naset.org).

Teachers also have to worry about the kiddos who come from broken, abusive, and low socioeconomic households. One of the biggest things that I have learned so far is that a hungry student is a distracted student. There are several students that go to bed hungry and don't eat a lot over the weekend because their family cannot afford it. It's important to know that if you're going to get a student to listen to you, you've gotta keep some crackers or trail mix with you at all times in case they cannot focus because of their lack of food. With that, the other battle with teaching is handling the parents. Some are wonderful, others... not so much. I haven't had to experience this yet personally, but I'm prepared.

The key ingredient in being a good teacher is not the lesson you prepare, but the relationships that you develop with your students. I have sat through countless classes, and not once have I remembered the material taught word for word, but I have remembered the relationship that I've had with the teacher or professor. Being a teacher means that:

"students want to know that you care before they care about how much you know"

Building a relationship with 30+ kids is hard, but it's possible. You have to know that it's okay to admit your personal struggles and show that you are not a robot. Having a relationship with your kids means apologizing when you realize that you taught or did something wrong. Having a relationship means caring about things that students also care about. If they're concerned about something, it's your job to ask about it. Being a relational teacher means asking yourself: "what can I learn from my students today?"

I cannot wait to be a teacher, which entails a lot more than a "glorified babysitter". I cannot wait to teach the future generation everything that they need to know to be successful. I cannot wait to build really cool relationships with them, and see the graduation invitations from them when they graduate with master's degrees from somewhere. I am excited to love on my students and do something with my life that is worthwhile.

However, I know that I am not the only major who feels like they must defend themselves from the rest of society. What I've learned is that everyone will not understand you or what you love. Our job is to educate them respectfully. Every career choice is valid. Everybody does a different job in this world for a good reason. We all have strengths and weaknesses, and that's a good thing! Someone whose brain is wired to be a car salesman probably would not thrive as a scuba diver. Someone who is extremely good at math should probably not try to pursue a career in teaching collegiate literature. We're all different and we all have different passions. Not everyone will understand, and that's okay. Let's do our part to help them understand.

I am a future teacher, and I'm proud of it.

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