Today we have a great guest post from Fiona Mayberry. Fiona writes for a variety of publications that help students find their career path after school. Fiona Mayberry believes the world is her classroom. She writes to get her ideas out to as many students as possible, and share her experience in the education field.
Some people know all their lives what they want to do for a living. Some want to build bridges or tall buildings, others want to help people- by entering the medical field, social work, teaching, or another public service category.
Some of us change our minds several times about what we want to do though. A lot of people start out in one career, and then move to teaching that subject after they’ve reached some level of success. These teachers use their experience as their main instruction tool. Teachers of more general subjects rely more on their ability to teach rather than their knowledge of one particular topic.
Whether you’re considering teaching as a second career or your first, there are a lot of things to consider. Here are a few points you’ll want to keep in mind:
Salary Teaching is not known for being a well-paid profession. If you require a high-paying job, you’ll want to look elsewhere. If you’re willing to work abroad, however, there may be some well-paying teaching jobs that even cover travel costs and living expenses.
Hours Weekends and summers off sounds really nice, doesn’t it? Too bad teachers often take their work home with them, whether it’s planning lessons or grading papers. That takes up considerable time on nights and weekends. And you may get summers off, but not three whole months. Many teachers need to take advantage of teaching summer classes in order to earn extra money. Summer is also when some choose to pursue necessary continuing education opportunities, such as teaching workshops or certification renewals.
State Requirements Before you get too far into your dreams of teaching, look at the requirements for teaching certification in your state. Some areas have different prerequisites, and certain jobs have more strict background requirements than others. You’ll want to make sure you’re capable of meeting the criteria.
Motivation If you need to be told you’re doing a good job in order to keep your motivation, the classroom may not be the best place for you. Students don’t always appreciate all the work you put into educating them, and parents are often likely to blame you for problems their student has learning. Principals are often caught between parents and teachers, and usually lean toward siding with parents and trying to keep them happy. You’ll need to have a strong constitution and support group outside of work in order to stay motivated.
Patience As a teacher, you’ll be dealing with people on a daily basis. Everyone has a different learning style, so you’ll have to learn to accept that some people won’t be able to grasp a concept the first time you explain it. You’ll have to come up with alternate methods, and put time and intention behind your approach. If you have a short fuse, you’ll probably be frustrated a lot. Conversely, just because you’re patient, doesn’t mean that you’ll automatically make a great teacher.
Creativity As stated previously, teachers need to be able to look at a problem and find a solution, and it’s not always the most obvious solution. If you can think outside the box, your teaching methods will be more affective, and your students will probably enjoy your lessons more.
There are a lot of aspects that go into teaching, especially as a full-time career. If your passion lies in helping others, you are a self-motivated patient person who can look at situations from various angles and teach multiple styles, you just may make a good teacher. So do your research and see if you have what it takes to embark on the teaching path.