So you want to know how to become a teacher? That’s awesome. The future of the world is in your hands. It isn’t hard to see the correlation between education and being a positive member of society.
While becoming a teacher doesn’t have impossible hurdles blocking your path, it is still a goal that requires time, energy, and effort. Colleges don’t just hand out a teaching degree, but with some perseverance, you too can become a teacher.
So, how to be a teacher in the United States? Consider the following.
To Become a Teacher – Earn a Bachelor’s Degree
Teaching is a profession that is difficult to obtain without a bachelor’s degree. In fact, most school districts will require a bachelor’s degree in order for you to be a teacher.
The question then becomes, what should I study in college in order to become a teacher? To answer that question appropriately, you’ll need to have an idea of what grade you intend to teach. If you want to be a kindergarten or elementary teacher, then you will probably want to major in Education or Childhood Development. Most elementary teachers teach a variety of subjects in addition to wrangling little ones, so an education that gives a broad scope of how to teach and reach children is helpful.
If you want to become a secondary teacher or high school teacher you will want courses that focus on the subject you intend to teach. If you want to become a math teacher, you will want to take math classes in college. Same for English, History, Science, etc. Teaching preparation courses supplement these subject courses.
No matter your planned path on how to become a teacher, your adviser will be a big help as to what will prepare you best for your new career.
Is a Master’s Degree required to be a teacher? Not particularly. Certain districts and schools may require it, and if you want to go into administration an advanced degree is helpful, but if you are just looking on how to become a teacher, then a Bachelor’s Degree should be fine.
To Become a Teacher – Get Your Teaching Credential
Getting your teaching credential/license/certificate is another thing you will need to do in order to be a teacher. Your degree plan usually helps walk you through to your licenses, but you will want to check with your adviser and your state as to the actual requirements to get your teaching credential. Your field of study and the grade level will have an impact on your certificate so make sure you know the rules for your state.
To Become a Teacher – Student Teaching
We all remember the student teachers in our classes. They were usually a little nervous, but by the end of their time in your class they were getting the hang of things. Student teaching is necessary for the aspiring teacher because it gives him or her the ability to be supervised in front of a class before being handed a class on their own.
How To Become a Teacher if Your Degree Wasn’t In Teaching?
Some people finish their college degree, get to work, and then realize they wish they had gone into teaching. Do you need to go back to school to get a teaching degree? Not necessarily. Many states offer alternate certification courses. These courses allow someone to get the class time and experience necessary to get in front of a class. It is great for people who wish they had thought about how to become a teacher the first time around!
Alternate certification courses come with a cost, so you’ll need to take that into account. However, they are cheaper than going back to college.
For an example of an alternative teaching certificate, here is a course for people in Texas.
Becoming a Teacher is a Rewarding Career
Teaching isn’t easy, especially at first. Kids don’t behave, and parents can be a burden. But once you get settled and get in a groove, you will find that educating children and having them become better people is an experience that can’t be beat.
How to become a teacher? Should I be a teacher? With great energy, perseverance, and a great attitude, you can do it!