Facing Our Fears in Our Careers

The one thing that absolutely NONE of us are looking forward to are the hard days we’ll have when we get into our classrooms. The days where things get tough after facing challenge after challenge with our students. No matter what the media says, education isn’t all finger-painting and crafts.

Since everyone here already knows that, I believe that it would do us well to talk about some of the challenges that we will face as science educators, and what we can do to overcome them!

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(Some) Challenges We Will Face

  • Keeping students ENGAGED
  • Parents not wanting their students to learn about controversial topics
  • Overcoming misconceptions (THIS IS A BIG ONE)
  • Promoting inquiry as opposed to handing students the facts
  • Emphasizing learning over the grade

These are all things that we will face as science teachers, and to be perfectly honest, some of these are really hard to overcome. However, we’re not in this alone, so here are some ways to overcome each challenge!

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Overcoming the Challenges

Keeping Students ENGAGED

  • We have to make sure that we are doing everything in our power to not only know our students, but to teach to their interests. Students love learning about things that can apply to their lives!

Parents and Controversy

  • Make sure to always be in contact with the parents of your students! Keeping that open line increases the likelihood that your parents will trust you. Also, making sure to visit both sides of any argument will assuage any fears that the parents may have about the topic!


  • Misconceptions can be one of the hardest things that we will have to face in our careers. In a day and age where media literacy is at an all time low, the best we can do is double down efforts to teach our students not only media literacy, but also ensuring students that it is ok to be wrong, as long as they are open to alternative ideas and concepts.

Promoting Inquiry

  • Students will love inquiry if you foster a classroom environment that idolizes the learning journey rather than the learning destination! This can be done through emphasizing the learning that a student is doing rather than the grade that they are being assigned for that learning!

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Here is a video that goes more into ways to overcome challen

ges in science teaching:


  1. Great post Bryce! I really liked how concisely you addressed the challenges. I like how you phrased inquiry as the journey rather than the destination. I think thats a really good way of looking at it. Do you have any teachers that come to mind that you think did a really good job of handling these challenges?

  2. Finger-painting? Never heard of her.
    I loved reading your blog! My favorite thing that you mentioned was, “emphasizing learning over the grade.” As a high school and college student, I will admit that I was only worried about my grade. I didn’t care if I remembered any of the information after the final, as long as I got a good grade. How would you, as a teacher, ensure that your students are just as worried about learning as they are about getting a good grade?
    Your TED Talk was a great addition to this blog!
    Great post!

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