Post # 1
So a little background, I got my teaching degree in 2009. But trying to find a teaching job in northwest ohio is hard. I went to work in retail til I could find my dream job. Three years later and I am still stocking cheese. I signed up to subsitute teach but it was hard with my job schedule and we really needed my paycheck.
But FH looks at me the other night and says you really need to get out of that job and go after your dreams. So I applied to subsitute more places and all that. Well out of the blue, I get an offer from the first subsituting company that I applied to years ago that a full time aide position has opened up just steps away from my house.
It’s for a middle school student with a physical handicap. Now all my work is with elementary students, like under grade three. I did one sub position with a preschool who was mentally and physically handicap but that was ages ago.
So anyone have any expereince with being a one on one aide? What should I expect? I know it’ll be demanding but I’m just so ready to get out of my current job. I’m really excited but nervous at the same time.
Post # 3
@jatelynn: My FFIL did this for kids with CP and loved it. The needs of each child is going to vary. Basically, it will depend on the nature of the student’s handicap. I know that he had to help the student take notes, get to the restroom, get meals, etc. He actually passed away in Dec, but his students really loved him and even came to visit him at his home (he was ill with cancer). You really become more than just an aide to these kids, and the bond that you develop is indescribable. At FFIL’s wake, one of his students came up to my FI and told him how wonderful of a friend his father was. It was really touching. That’s all I really know about this job, but at least it gives you some perspective.
Post # 4
As @housebee: it really will depend on the kid. My SIL was one for two years (or more) and I know one year she loved it and the next she hated it.
I would ask the company about the kid they have chosen for you to learn more.
But really I would take it if you think your up to the challenge. Its a step closer to your dream job. Its experience that you have to start getting to give yourself the advantage in the job applicant pool. Plus you get the opportunity to really learn about a school system and the people there so if something opens up you can apply from within.
Post # 5
I was never a 1:1 aide, but I am a special education teacher and I’ve had many students with 1:1 aides. Mostly, they escort their student to each class, help them maintain organization (making sure HW is written down, make sure their papers/books/materials are in order), and of course the needs will vary based upon the student. You may also wind up helping the student to resist urges to yell or call out in class, you may need to redirect them during lessons to make sure they’re on task, and you may wind up reading problems/tasks to students. Depending on their disability, it’s hard to determine between helping and doing too much. I would say for most students, they should be able to write their own HW & notes if they are in a public school setting. I would also advise you to befriend teachers/staff, because they may help open doors for you, as sometimes I’ve seen 1:1 aides get stuck in an aide trap, where they stay an aide forever. I’m also wondering what your certification is, and if you’d be able to become certified for the grades in which you’d be working, in order to help facilitate finding a job within this school. I’d also ask if you could see the student’s IEP so that you know exactly what you’re dealing with. Good luck!
Post # 6
My mom has been a special education teacher for the majority of her career and I have seriously considered going into the profession many times. If you have a heart for children with needs then it’s awesome. It can be super stressful and hard to deal with parents sometimes but it is so rewarding. It is really important to have a lot of patience because in the beginning it will be tough. This student may push against you for awhile because he/she doesn’t know you well. It will take time but once you connect with the student it should be a lot easier.
Good luck, I have so much respect for those who choose to work with children in need.
Post # 7
Thanks everyone for responding.
I took the position. I’ll be working one on one with a girl with CP, making sure she gets on and off the bus, feeding her breakfast and lunch, taking her to class, and changing her diaper. My FMIL actually knows the teacher I’ll be working with, and really helped me get the position.
I’m excited and nervous. I’m hoping next week to go in and work in the classroom one day. The position doesn’t start til the 27th.
Now to just tell my current boss who I love to death. I hate my current job but I totally would stay forever just cause my boss is awesome. Problem is she just started her vacation. SO pretty much when she comes back, I’ll be leaving. Guess I’ll have to tell the bigger boss first.
But I know I have to do this. I have use the degree I spent thousands of dollars on. I am certified for Prek- to 3 to teach. Never had a real desire to teach the upper grades but when opportunity knocks and it doesn’t knock often, you go and try it out. If it’s not for me, I’ll just whimper back to my old job and look for another opportunity.
Post # 8
@jatelynn: This sounds just like my SO’s cousin. She worked in retail and is now an aide for physically and mentally handicapped because she wants to be a teacher but that’s all she could get. She doesn’t particularly find it rewarding. She has to change diapers of children as large as fifth graders. She has a lot of other duties that most people would find intolerable. I personally don’t see how someone could do this job unless they were truly passionate about it.
Post # 9
@emmalyn: yeah, i’m looking forward to the diapers but it is one of those things that could lead to bigger and better things. PLus I look at it as I don’t start til the end of this month and school only goes til the end of may, so that’s 3 months. I can suck it up and deal with it if its horrible for 3 months. But I’m going in with bright eyes and an eagerness and hoping it’s a great experience. It’ll look good on my resume, a lot better then I stock things. haha
Post # 10
@jatelynn: Keep a good attitude as long as you can! Maybe it will help get you “in” with the school district too. I wish you the best of luck!
Post # 11
When I first started as a one on one (more like one on two), I didn’t get much help from anyone. It was like, here is a second grader with autism, bye. I was really frustrated at first because of the lack of communication and support. This is Chicago public schools, so I’m sure smaller districts are better.
i also have my teaching license in music Ed, but actually really love what I’m doing. Recess duty blows though, haha. By myself with 90 kindergarteners? Are you kidding?
weve had a few subs fill in for the regular spec Ed teacher. They all suck. Non of them have patience, and bark orders at all the kids. One even said, will that (coloring in the lines) ever get better? One also said, “I feel so bad for kids like that”. Ugh, and you’re an educator??!
but today, I had one of my special needs students say “I love it my teachers”. (Serbian accent, aww). It’s sooo awesome to see them smile and see them reach new milestones. It takes a lot of patience, but I love it.