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How long should you spend in one year group?

Discussion in 'Primary' started by kevinjames12, Feb 5, 2012.

  1. Hi all,

    I am currently a Year 2 teacher and, although I like the year group, I find that the children are a bit too young for me still. My professional preference is with KS2 and I would like to move out of KS1 asap. However, how long should you spend in a year group before requesting to move up? KS1 has definitely taught me how to simplify things and develop good questioning skills but I''m now ready to start teaching higher up in the primary school.

    Cheers,

    Kev
     
  2. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    I'd suggest it's often a good idea to spend at least 2 years in a year group, especially if you're new to teaching. It gives you a chance to refine your practice, choosing what worked last year and modifying what didn't, all while having a degree of familiarity with the planning and expectations. A consolidation year, so to speak.
    Don't forget - although you can express a preference, your head will make the decision as to where you teach, based on what is felt to be best for the children, whose needs will always come before staff's.

     
  3. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Don't fall into the trap of thinking that being moved up to KS2 is a promotion of sorts. Each year group has its own challenges and no one year group is more difficult than any other. Depth of subject knowledge required increases as you move up, clearly, but offset that against the endless resourcefulness needed in FS/KS1. The one exception to this is that SATs pressure in Y6 isn't for everyone (it shouldn't exist, but it does), but this is down more to politics than the children and varies from school to school anyway.
    I must say though, having said all that, that I think that Y3 is possibly the most challenging of all year groups! I have such a lot of respect and admiration for Y3 teachers!

     
  4. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    I'd say spend as long as you like. Some people spend their entire career in one year group, some change nearly every year.

    Go and talk to your HT let them know you would like to work in KS2 next year if there is someone who would like to move to KS1. Try to think of a better explanation than 'I feel ready to move up now' or you will show yourself to be clueless and so probably not get what you want.
     
  5. There is no concrete answer to this question.
    Most headteachers would be wise to keep a teacher in a year group for 2 years - in order to embed skills.
    Some teachers become experts in their particular age group and like to stay there - Foundation stage, Nursery , Year 6 are examples.
    I prefer to move around - and have taught every year group in primary over the last 20 years ( even had a spell at sixth form!)
    I now know my heart is in KS1 and am happy to stay in this departmnet . whether it year 1 or 2.

     
  6. FenellaF

    FenellaF New commenter

    Thanks NIck, big up the Y3 teachers! Yay! I'm a Y3 teacher and I love the little monkeys
     
  7. I agree so much with this. I have watched usual Yr6 supply teachers come into KS1 and completely flounder with coping with the differing needs. I love KS1 but understand and respect all other teachers for their preferences and skills. Sometimes though I don't always feel the same respect from KS2 colleagues. A shame.
    Anyway, definitely a change can be good. Go for it! I'm hoping to move this year too.
     
  8. dagnabit

    dagnabit New commenter

    In the end you go where you're put. In our school the HT moves people round to suit the school's needs. Personal wants are taken under advisement ( and then usually ignored).
     
  9. Not in my school dagnabit.
     
  10. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    It's a bit difficult to meet everyone's needs ... if you want to go to KS2 and none of the KS2 staff want to move who gets their choice ... Heads and SLT have the final say and make choices based on where they think staff will be best suited, or they aren't doing their job
     
  11. lardylady

    lardylady Star commenter

    The HT should have the last say, especially if teachers have been stagnating in a particular Key Stage for years. We tend to be moved around every 3 years, although I've taught Ys 1, 2 , 3, 4 and 5 in the 9 years that I've been at my present school. I'm currently in Y1 and wasn't at all happy when I was moved, but I've enjoyed the experience. The only year group I would hate to teach is Y6, simply because I would hate all the SATs crap that goes with it.
     
  12. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter

    In eight years I've taught every year group except year 4 ( not too difficult in a mixed age school, there are only 4 classes to work through!) I was originally a Reception teacher but now teach year 5/6. I nearly had kittens when the Head told me I was moving from (then) year 2/3 to 5/6 but now love it! However I don't know how long I can stand the SATs pressures-we are a school "on the edge" and every year seems to be a struggle to get the right number of children to keep the school above floor target- when 1 child is 10% and we are a school with a reputation for taking on children with "issues" we barely scrape over each year. SIPs, LA advisors and consultants seem to take root in my class from january onwards! Eventually there will come a time when enough is enough and I want out. Unfortunately no-one else wants it either! Reception and Year 6 seem to be the years where teachers are stuck the longest.!
     
  13. It's swings and roundabouts-everyone finds their level and what age group they feel most comfortable teaching. Having taught all age groups from R to Y6 there is no way I would go back to teaching Reception kids-far too difficult! You can have a half decent conversation with Y6's and the classroom environment somehow seem a less lonely place. ofstedwatch.co.uk
     
  14. carriecat10

    carriecat10 Established commenter Community helper

    I agree with all the comments already posted but would like to add that your decisions/preferences might also be influenced by whether you are looking for promotion to SLT, Assistant Head, Deputy or Headship. If so, you will need to have had a breadth of experience across the whole primary age range. That doesn't necessarily mean every year group, but you should have taught in both KS1 and lower and upper KS2.
    This may not be important to you and so you are in the fortunate position to try a few out to see which suits you best and vice versa!
    Carrie [​IMG]
     
  15. I agree , I have taught every year group from fs 2 to year 6 and am currently in year 5 which I loVe!
    When I first started out I was in year 1 and could not imagine teaching any older children, but after a move to year 6 I realised how brilliant it was that you Could have a conversation with them and they didn't vomit or blow their nose on you !!!!!!
    Having said that I think that staying too long in any key stage is not healthy but you need ( in my opinion ) at least 2 to 3 years in each year group to really get the gist and build up your planning and expertise skills.
    I agree that ks2 is not a step up, just a different environment and yes , your subject knowledge needs to be stronger but you are far less emotionally and physically exhausted than in the early years!
     
  16. I was once told by a colleague to spend 3 years in the same year group

    The first year to get used to it (make mistakes & see what does and doesn't work), the second year to refine your teaching and the third year to enjoy it!
     
  17. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    LOL I got told to spend 3 years in the same school. The first to learn how to do your job. The second to enjoy it. The third to look for a new one!
     
  18. forestje

    forestje New commenter

    So do I which is why I have been in the same age group for a very very very long time.
    Each set of children present different challenges and need a different approach.
     
  19. Hi.I teach in Year 6 and have done for half my 33 year career. Since the introduction of the SAT'S no one wants to change places with either me or my two Year 6 colleagues.I CAN'T IMAGINE WHY!
     
  20. Not a problem for me as I have y3/4/5/6 in my class!! Hard work but lots of fun!
     

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