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Is it hard to become a Elementary school teacher ?

I want to become a elementary school teacher

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Maeve’s Answer, CareerVillage.org Team

Hi Chloe,

I think Micheal did a great job of outlining the typical path to getting a job in elementary education. I want to provide insight into a more non-traditional way that you could enter into the field of education. In college, I studied economics but realized I was really interested in education and wanted to try out getting experience in the classroom. I ended up applying to a teaching fellowship program my senior year at a charter school in New York City. This program was 3 years, and included support from the school's curriculum coaches to help train and support me in the classroom. They also paid for my masters degree in teaching that lasted two years and helped me get fully certified in early childhood education in the state of NY. I would take one night class a week in addition to teaching full time. Having this paid for by my employer and getting support from teaching staff throughout my fellowship was definitely a huge plus.

I don't think there is any right or wrong way to enter the world of elementary education, and of course there are pros and cons to teaching at a charter vs public vs private school. But I wanted to provide insight into other ways you can start working as an elementary school teacher!
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Pamela’s Answer

Michael has a great response to your question as does Maeve. I would like to add some insights. It can be hard to become a teacher depending on how you feel about the career. To me teaching is a lifestyle, not just a job. It is a lot of work if you want to be good at it. What you saw as a student in a classroom is only part of the job. Teachers spend time outside the classroom grading papers, doing paperwork, taking classes to keep up their credentials and more. Many take their masters coursework in the evenings and in the summer months. In the summer I used to plan my field trips, work on my lessons, map my curriculum and more. I guess what I am trying to say is that the prep is one thing but the commitment to greatness is another. Talk to teachers in the field and ask them about their time spent outside the classroom. The prep in college might be demanding but they are doing their best to get you ready for a superb career.
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Micheal’s Answer

Hi Chloe,

Good question!

If you are interested to become elementary school teacher,



K-6 teacher requirements depend on the state or region in which the prospective teacher is seeking certification, but generally, a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and completion of an approved teacher preparation program is expected. For traditional students, the following is the typical process to become an elementary school teacher:

-Earn a bachelor’s degree in elementary education.
-Complete an internship in an elementary school classroom.
-Take your state’s licensing exams for elementary teachers.
-Apply for a license through your state board of education.
-Once you have received your license, begin applying for open positions.
Reference link:https://www.teachercertificationdegrees.com/careers/elementary-school-teacher/

All the best!
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T.’s Answer

This is an incredible and rewarding career path!
Typically, elementary school teachers need to hold a bachelor's degree and complete a teacher certification program. They must pass several specific examinations to obtain California's Multiple Subject Teaching Credential for elementary teachers.
Exams Required: The California Basic 1) Educational Skills Test (CBEST)
2) Education Required: Bachelor's degree with an approved teacher education program;
3) Advancement Requirements: A clear credential that must be renewed every five years
License Validity Period: 5 years
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