Editorials

Dr. Helen talks about stereotypes that male teachers face

An MSN article notes that male teachers continue to take a nosedive:

Where Are All The Men - A Parent's Perspective

by Stacey Garfinkle - Washingtonpost.com
Relief!

That's the word that describes my emotions last week when we received the long-awaited postcard telling us who the first-grade teacher would be. While we're lucky that our school has many very good teachers, there are a few I'd rather avoid. A good teacher means my son will likely have a great school year; a bad teacher means... Well, thankfully we haven't had to cross that path yet.

Just Say NO, to No Touch

by Donald E. Piburn, M.S.Ed
Male early childhood (EC) educators face stereotypes that portray us as potential child abusers on a daily basis. Clearly, children must be protected from child abusers, yet a principle reason many men give for not entering or staying in the field of early childhood education (ECE) is fear of being accused of harming young children (Nelson, 2002). Only at their own peril do many male EC educators offer "the intimate pats, back rubs, caresses and leisurely holding on laps and in arms that little ones need" (Honig, 2005).

Are male teachers the answer?

The Jamaica Observer
Career & Education shares with you this week the thoughts of Vivienne Turnbull concerning the value of male teachers in the classroom and how Jamaica could, potentially, attract more men to help educate and mentor the island's boys. Turnbull is an image and communications consultant.

WHEN I attended high school and college, there was no shortage of male teachers in the classroom. I suspect this had a positive impact on students, especially males.

Men teaching in the news

Every day we see more and more stories about men teaching - the attention to this topic is hopeful and we believe an indication of the interest.

Both the posting of the article to ABCNews.com and the Good Morning America segment generate more than 30,000 hits in one day to the MenTeach.org website! We've been watching the comment section of their site and have read many stories.

Here is one comment:

Where in the world do Men Change Diapers?

by Kitt Cox
If you're like many of those associated with MenTeach, you've probably surprised many different people in many situations with your "Men who change diapers change the world" bumperstickers.



Kitt Cox got T. Berry Brazelton, the famous pediatrician to pose with a bumper sticker.

Do you want to start your own male teacher training program?

Sometimes on quiet days (or when we want a distraction from all the work we have) we'll do a search on the internet about male teachers, men teachers, or this time "male teacher training programs."

The value of the male schoolteacher

by Derrick Z. Jackson - Boston Globe Columnist
PATRICK Cunningham taught my youngest son a decade ago in first and second grade at the Cambridgeport School in Cambridge. Now 59, he still teaches the same grades at the same school, one of the relatively few men in the nation working with children so young. In 27 years of preschool and early elementary teaching, he has felt none of the cultural pressures that stop men from even thinking about such a career. more stories like this

What is "male" culture?

How do we define culture and specifically what is a "male" culture - what are the qualities of a classroom and activities that are "male?" Is there a "female" culture? Isn't the idea of "male" and "female" changing all the time?

Here is one man's response:

Editorial: Children benefit by having male teachers

MenTeach
There is a small, but slowly growing body of evidence about the importance of men teachers.

In one study, we find that boys do better in reading if they have a male teacher.

In another study in the United Kingdom, "finds that three-quarters (76 per cent) of boys aged eight to 11 are in favour of schools having teachers of both genders."

Working Forum - Men in Early Childhood Education

Don Piburn, Hawaii
The 2008 Working Forum (WF) on Men in Early Childhood Education (MECE) Honolulu was an incredible success. Like most everyone who assisted in the planning for the event, I know we all had some digging out to do. I received many personal expressions of appreciation regarding the WF MECE Honolulu from WF MECE attendees. Every single one of the comments I have received to date have been positive.

Here is an example:

Teacher Shortage or Teacher Turnover

MenTeach receives e-mails and comments from readers expressing their frustration about not being able to find a teacher job. This can definitely be a very frustrating experience. There are several issues that feed this seemingly contradictory problem - few men teachers and many schools saying they want more male teachers but men are not being hired.

The Working Forum Conference

I know we should be posting photos and daily reports about the event - after all it IS the first of its kind in history. But it's been unbelieveably full. From early morning until late at night.

I'll just list a few highlights and come back later to give a fuller report.

First World Conference for Men in Early Childhood Education

I've arrived in Honolulu, HI for the first World Conference for men in early childhood education. It's been over five years in the planning and it's amazing to think it will be happening starting on Tuesday.

Girls vs. Boys

Veronica - Chicago Mom's Blog
Are girls really out pacing boys in education?

Looking Elsewhere

by whatupthen
[MenTeach: We like to read what is out there and found this teacher's comments. Do you have any thoughts about his situation? Is it similar to your situation?]

Male Teachers

by Tom Scott - December 6, 2004

How do I get my teaching license?

MenTeach
We get many e-mails from readers about useful links. Some are from people trying to promote a product or service - not always very useful.

Recently, we received a e-mail about a site that lists all the states requirements to get a teaching license - it even lists alternative certification. A very useful resource.

What does society think of people who work with young children?

by Julian Grenier
[MenTeach: This is an interesting blog posting from the UK.]

It's been a good week for news about this. A report in the Observer takes another look at a familiar question: why are there so few men in primary and nursery education?

States with more male teachers have higher salaries

[MenTeach: There isn't alot of research out that shows whether there is an effect of having more male teachers. But one study that has been around since 2003 shows that states with more male teachers have higher salaries.]

Where the boys aren't

Nancy Flanagan - Teacher Leader Network
Some of my best friends are men. More importantly, some of my best teacher friends--sounding boards, inspirations and educational soul mates--are men. But men are a diminishing force in teaching, a distinct cause for alarm when you consider that half the pool of prospective teachers is men.

Teacher of the Year - Fourth Grade Snots

by Rosemary Ruffenach - TCDailyPlanet.com
As kids we used to jump rope on the school playground chanting, "First grade babies/ Second grade tots/ Third grade angels/ Fourth grade snots." I couldn't wait to become one of those snots. It sounded so, well, teenagie.

I was thinking a lot about fourth grade after this week's all-district school staff meeting. Usually they are ho-hum affairs. Some staff bring knitting; others haunt the coffee urns. But this one brought tears to my eyes-a first.

Editorial: Studies about boys and girls reading - scientific mischief

We have had the opportunity to look at many studies over the years and appreciate the challenges of conducting quality research.

One study published in Sex Roles concludes that boys don't benefit from having male teachers reading to them.

Is this a correct conclusion based on this study?

Editorial: Hiring men teachers

I was reading through some online newspapers.

One from Sauk Center, Minnesota (a part of the state that is home to the Prairie Home Companion host Garrison Keillor's Lake Wobegone) and the other from China.

The Minnesota article was about an old town hall that was being moved. In the news back in 1891 the township added some outhouses to the school, some books and hired a male teacher.

Editorial: Recruiting More Men to Teach

There are many ways to recruit more men to be teachers.

Start a large public awareness campaign
There needs to be constant, pervasive messages about the importance of men teaching children. Every media needs to show positive images of men teaching or telling stories about the value and significance of men teaching. Newspapers, magazine, television, the internet, movies and radio all need to help to shift people's perception that teaching is women's work.

Is there a difference between white and black teachers?

Will Okun - New York Times blog
[MenTeach: A great editorial in the New York Times - be certain to link to the site to read the comments - they are very interesting. Thanks to Roy for forwarding the article to me.]

Will Okun is a Chicago school teacher who traveled with Nick Kristof in June to central Africa, on the win-a-trip contest. He blogged and vlogged as he went, and you can see his reports at www.nytimes.com/twofortheroad. He teaches English and photography in a Chicago school with many students from low-income and minority homes.

Editorial: There are male teachers blogging their opinions

MenTeach
In the past, people would complain to me that they couldn't find male teachers. With the internet and wider communication, you'll find more and more blogs written by male teachers. It's unlikely to be the most representative sample of male teachers and they vary in content and quality. They do however provide an interesting sample of what is being written by men in the classrooms.

MenTeach National Symposium 2007

Next week in Chicago there is Men Teaching: A national symposium on developing a national policy on the importance of men in the lives of children.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007
12 noon - 4:30 PM
Chicago, IL
McCormick Place, South Building - S505 A/B

On-site registration is available.

Jack Black is "Man-witch" a school teacher

MenTeach
Another movie about a male teacher will come out in the future starring Jack Black (he also starred School of Rock - 2003). In this new movie he will be a teacher that finds that he has magical powers like a witch and is recruited to attend a school for witches (a la Harry Potter) but the school is for all women.
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