If you HAD to, would you rather have a job working with children or animals? - Mothering Forums
Working and Student Parents > If you HAD to, would you rather have a job working with children or animals?
samy23's Avatar samy23 08:10 AM 03-01-2011

Wondering what others will choose, as I can't decide which I'd rather work with in the distant future and which to study for now....help!

 

ETA- I put a poll in this question but it doesnt seem to have worked aww....



Halfasianmomma's Avatar Halfasianmomma 08:24 AM 03-01-2011
Animals. But that's just me orngbiggrin.gif
earthmama369's Avatar earthmama369 08:27 AM 03-01-2011
Personally, I'd choose to work with animals. I love my kids, and I've worked as a high school teacher before, but I found that while I loved my students, I really wasn't able to handle the politics and structure of the school system. If I were able to get a FT job working as a teacher for a homeschool co-op and could support my family on that, I'd totally go for it, but that's not really realistic. I think a lot of it has to do with personality, too. I'd have a hard time working with younger kids in the long run because I just can't handle the noise levels (sensory issues) and I don't think I'm consistently playful or spontaneous enough to roll with their flow. I'm better with animals and I'm steady and empathic enough to work well with injured or abused animals and have done so in the past without getting burned out.
Alyantavid's Avatar Alyantavid 08:27 AM 03-01-2011

Animals definitely.  I think it takes a certain kind of person to work with kids and with animals.  I know I can't work with kids and I know I can work with animals.


justKate's Avatar justKate 10:15 AM 03-01-2011

Animals, without a doubt.  I like to save my "kid energy" for my own kid. 


GoBecGo's Avatar GoBecGo 10:58 AM 03-01-2011

Animals!  My own kids are bad enough.... lol, j/k, kind of...;)


heather+mike2005's Avatar heather+mike2005 09:13 AM 03-02-2011

Animals, hands down! 


happysmileylady's Avatar happysmileylady 09:23 AM 03-02-2011

Wow, I am kinda surprised at the results so far.

 

For me, kids, no question.  Kids can be talked to and "reasoned" with (to a point obviously, but you know what I mean) and help clean their own messes for the most part.  Animals cannot.  Animals can violently turn on you for seemingly no reason, they make huge messes they can't clean themselves and while they can be trained, they can't be taught in the same way kids can.

 

Now, don't get me wrong, I love the 5 pets I have, I have more pets than kids.  But, kids are easier, imo, no question.


mamabutterfly's Avatar mamabutterfly 05:26 PM 03-02-2011

Can I say other, lol? I'd vote for adults! :) Totally not what you asked, but I had been in elementary education, and knew I love to teach others, but a coincidence put me in a job in adult education (literacy, GED prep etc), and I love it! When I was in my teens/20's, I thought I was a 'kid person', but I think that was just because I like kids, which I still due. As a mom I spend a ton of time with my kids and their friends, but wow, teaching adults has been incredibly rewarding and meaningful. Also none of the navigating expectations of parents, which I found really hard about teaching little kids.


One_Girl's Avatar One_Girl 08:45 PM 03-02-2011

I would like to use my degree and work as a teacher, but teaching is a dead field in my state and the ones immediately surrounding me right now.  I think working with animals may be a more productive path, but I am not in touch with the job market in that field.


Drummer's Wife's Avatar Drummer's Wife 08:48 PM 03-02-2011

Children.  I am not an animal person. 


Drummer's Wife's Avatar Drummer's Wife 08:52 PM 03-02-2011


Quote:
Originally Posted by One_Girl View Post

I would like to use my degree and work as a teacher, but teaching is a dead field in my state and the ones immediately surrounding me right now.  I think working with animals may be a more productive path, but I am not in touch with the job market in that field.



You know, this is a good point in case the OP is consider a career in teaching.  Many, many areas of the country right now are simply not hiring teachers - in fact, seasoned teacher are being laid off and looking for teaching jobs elsewhere, which means new grads in other locations have to compete with them.  I don't know a thing about the outlook on jobs involving animals, and of course there are other areas beside teaching that require interaction with kids, so that doesn't rule everything out. 


Tigerchild's Avatar Tigerchild 09:07 PM 03-02-2011

Animals.  I already did my time (fun as it was) as a preschool teacher.  My minor is in animal science though, so I have been kicked, bitten, butted, tossed over a stall wall, had to stick my arm up a cow's butt and the other one up her vagina while getting whapped in the face with her poopy tail--so I know that animals aren't alreadys a picnic either.  I actually deal better with having cow poo all over me than I do with multiple children projectile vomiting all at once (happened in my preschool class one year)...


marinak1977's Avatar marinak1977 11:12 PM 03-02-2011
Animals. They are simpler and more predictable on average. That's just me though
sparklett's Avatar sparklett 08:32 AM 03-06-2011

Having worked with BOTH animals and kids (and sometimes both at the same time, lol), I would choose kids, but NOT within a traditional education system.  Here's why:

 

Most people who want to work with animals have a skewed idea of what it's like and the truth is that it's usually not at all what you expect.  I worked for a veterinarian for seven years, at a zoo for two years, and then at museums with animal collections for 10 years, I can say that working with animals is dangerous, stressful, and physically tiring.  It's usually underpaid work and loaded with emotional strife.  Injured animals are not fun to deal with.  If you work for a veterinarian, you frequently have to deal with idiot owners who don't care for their pets and you also assume the risk of being bitten and exposed to various chemicals.  If you work at a zoo, you assume a major physical risk and believe me, cleaning up poo and chopping up food starts to lose it's appeal after awhile, even if you get to work with elephants.  In my animal career, I have been bitten, stung, scratched, and mauled. I have hidden under a truck to avoid an angry cape buffalo, fought off an aardvark with a rake, and been bitten completely through the hand by -of all things- a golden retriever.  And won't even get into the time when I had to gather up marijuana seeds out of pit bull poop to submit as evidence. 

 

I have also worked with children for ten years as an educator in zoos and museums.  It's really great becuase in this setting, the kids leave after a few hours and you get to see their fun, excited, best behavior side without having to deal with working within a school system.  Sure, you get the rude one every now and then but overall you get to facilitate a really fun, educational experience for them.  And did I mention that they go home after a couple of hours?  winky.gif  Also, working as an informal educator (someone who educates outside of the classroom) you usually spend only half your day with kids and the rest is spent doing research, designing new programs, etc.  It's great work.

 

If you are interested in both animals and children, I would suggest that you look into a career as an environmental educator, where you can work in a zoo or museum and deliver programs to kids while utilizing live animals as education tools.  Humane education is also on a similar vein.  If you want more information about any of this, feel free to PM me.


Sol_y_Paz's Avatar Sol_y_Paz 12:20 PM 03-07-2011

Animals (not their people though, just the animals themselves)


GoBecGo's Avatar GoBecGo 02:05 PM 03-07-2011

See i've worked with animals, horses, and though i agree with what i bolded, i found the horses so incredibly rewarding it was worth it.  I genuinely don't mind mucking out for the reward of connecting with a horse.  I have been kicked bitten and thrown by horses.  But it didn't matter.  And i wasn't paid at all most of the time.  But it didn't matter.

 

Most days getting my OWN kids raised by 24 more hours is enough of a challenge, i'm totally turned off by the idea of attempting it with someone else's kids!
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sparklett View Post

Having worked with BOTH animals and kids (and sometimes both at the same time, lol), I would choose kids, but NOT within a traditional education system.  Here's why:

 

Most people who want to work with animals have a skewed idea of what it's like and the truth is that it's usually not at all what you expect.  I worked for a veterinarian for seven years, at a zoo for two years, and then at museums with animal collections for 10 years, I can say that working with animals is dangerous, stressful, and physically tiring.  It's usually underpaid work and loaded with emotional strife.  Injured animals are not fun to deal with.  If you work for a veterinarian, you frequently have to deal with idiot owners who don't care for their pets and you also assume the risk of being bitten and exposed to various chemicals.  If you work at a zoo, you assume a major physical risk and believe me, cleaning up poo and chopping up food starts to lose it's appeal after awhile, even if you get to work with elephants.  In my animal career, I have been bitten, stung, scratched, and mauled. I have hidden under a truck to avoid an angry cape buffalo, fought off an aardvark with a rake, and been bitten completely through the hand by -of all things- a golden retriever.  And won't even get into the time when I had to gather up marijuana seeds out of pit bull poop to submit as evidence. 

 

I have also worked with children for ten years as an educator in zoos and museums.  It's really great becuase in this setting, the kids leave after a few hours and you get to see their fun, excited, best behavior side without having to deal with working within a school system.  Sure, you get the rude one every now and then but overall you get to facilitate a really fun, educational experience for them.  And did I mention that they go home after a couple of hours?  winky.gif  Also, working as an informal educator (someone who educates outside of the classroom) you usually spend only half your day with kids and the rest is spent doing research, designing new programs, etc.  It's great work.

 

If you are interested in both animals and children, I would suggest that you look into a career as an environmental educator, where you can work in a zoo or museum and deliver programs to kids while utilizing live animals as education tools.  Humane education is also on a similar vein.  If you want more information about any of this, feel free to PM me.


 

 


ecoteat's Avatar ecoteat 06:42 PM 03-07-2011

I'm a middle school teacher, so I think there's your answer. I used to work in a zoo and I loved it, but not nearly as much as I love spending my days with hormonal adolescent kids. Really! :)


shayinme's Avatar shayinme 07:05 AM 03-11-2011

Hard to say since I am not really an animal person but I am the director of a community center that has an after school program for kids 5-17. On days when we are short staffed I will work with the kids and it drains me. i find when I go home to my own kid (plural but the 19yo is away at college so not at issue) it takes so much time for me to regroup and be present with her. Its interesting because the founder of the agency left years ago when her own kids hit school age and my predecessor had adult kids. Now that my 5 yo is in school thoughts of leaving are happening with greater frequency.

 


hakeber's Avatar hakeber 12:46 AM 03-13-2011

I'm a middle and highschool teacher and wouldn't trade it for the world.  Under 12, no thanks, but the teen set is my idea of AWESOME.

 

Animals?  Not really my scene.


weliveintheforest's Avatar weliveintheforest 01:41 AM 03-13-2011

totally depends on the field, the type of animals, the age and needs of the children... I'd probably say children.


Gemini13's Avatar Gemini13 10:31 AM 03-23-2011

It's my dream to work with animals.   Unfortunately, I'm not at all scientifically inclined, so there isn't really anything I could do that would pay enough.  Working with kids (and having to deal with their parents) would be out of the question for me- I'm not a people person, at all.


geekgolightly's Avatar geekgolightly 01:59 AM 03-27-2011

I am an RN and I would pick animals if I could do it all over again.


pregnant@40's Avatar pregnant@40 05:19 PM 03-27-2011


Quote:
Originally Posted by geekgolightly View Post

I am an RN and I would pick animals if I could do it all over again.


Ha! Me, too.

 


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