As a homeschooled student, you have had the benefit of receiving a unique educational experience that helped you become well rounded, and ready to plan for the next phase in your personal education.
If you are thinking about becoming a teacher, you have many options in a field that is long standing and well respected. Whether you want to become a teacher to your own children one day, or pursue a career in a public or private academic institution, you have multiple options. Let’s take a look at how you can do it and what options you have.
If you’re excited about inspiring the next generation of learners, we suggest you begin by taking a deep breath and making a list of questions you have for colleges to answer. Once you choose a direction, you can discuss the courses you will take, exact degree track you should choose, and what types of jobs might be available in the location you want to teach in.
If you want to become a licensed teacher, here is a quick overview of things you should know:
- You’ll need to earn a Bachelor’s degree. It helps to earn one in education, or a subject that you would like to teach, if you have a specific preference.
- Every state has their own license examination requirements for teachers, which includes an examination and teaching experience under the guidance of a licensed professional.
- If you prefer to work at home, based on your success in homeschooling education, online programs are widely available to students in most states.
- It is standard for colleges to have academic advisors who can help you map the right path for your education – from start to finish, along with help figuring out license requirements.
What types of teaching jobs can you choose from?
The great thing about pursuing a career in education is the wide variety of teaching jobs that are available. What’s more, there are jobs for people who prefer to work with all ages and types of students. There are teaching degree programs that focus on K-12, early childhood, and specialty areas.
If you enjoy being around younger children, and watching the wonder in their eyes as they solve new problems and gain new insight about the world around them, a career in early childhood or elementary education might be the best fit. Or, if you would rather work with middle or high school students, there are programs that help you move in that direction as well. You may find colleges that have bachelor’s degrees in education programs with a variety of minors or specialties.
Another area where teachers are in need is special education. There is a growing awareness of the need for teachers who can work with children who suffer from different types of emotional, physical and behavioral disorder. These specialties can range from autism, sensory, development and other disorders. In many states, special education teachers need a graduate level degree, such as their master’s, to work with children of particular needs.
With an increasingly diverse population, English as a Second Language (ESL) teachers are also in increasing need. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), teachers in this area earned a median wage of $50,280 in 2015. In this role, you can help students who do not speak English as their first language learn at the same pace as their peers, while adapting to a less familiar language. If you want to work in this role, you should research colleges that offer Teaching English to Speakers of Other Language (TESOL) programs.
What kinds of courses can you expect in a college level teaching program?
If you enroll in a bachelor’s in education program, you can expect to cover some basics that every teacher should know. Courses will likely focus on child development, theories of education, public policy, ethics, curriculum design, managing classroom behavior, psychology, diversity, and more.
Students who choose a specialization can expect to take a deep dive into that area, and perhaps seek higher salary positions. If a long career in education is your goal, you can eventually move into leadership roles at the executive level.
With your homeschool experience, you may be well poised to earn your bachelors, obtain your license and teach students in home-based environments. You might even work as a consultant to help parents who want their children to learn at home be the best teachers they can be for them.
If you’re considering this career path, don’t think you’re alone. As you reach the end of this stage of your education, it’s the perfect time to start thinking about the next steps towards career success.
The field of teaching is one that draws dedicated individuals with a wide range of interests. If you are interested in finding out more about the full range of options, simply visit EducationDegree.com to learn more and connect with other likeminded individuals.