Teaching traditionally referred to teachers seeking to educate any group of students, whether they were young children or young adults. And that remains the case for most teachers.
However, there are a number of new, specialized roles that teachers can take on, each role making a unique contribution and with its own potential career path. Here are three interesting career paths for aspiring teachers.
Special education teachers work with students with special needs, no matter what they are. They can work with special needs students of any age and with a variety of issues. You may work with students with physical disabilities, mental disabilities, or both.
This job requires exceptional patience, understanding, and tolerance. It is also one of the most rewarding career paths for teachers. You might work in an area dedicated to special needs students, or you may facilitate special needs students working in a mainstream classroom.
You can start this job as an aide to the senior teacher, assisting that person in teaching kids while meeting the needs of particular students. You can then move up to become the head teacher of the class.
The special needs education system involves a lot of paperwork, starting with individual education plans and documenting what is done each day in accordance with that plan.
This means those working in special education get a lot of experience in administrative work and are considered ideal candidates for promotion to administration. This job can lead you to become a vocational rehabilitation counselor or school psychologist.
Know that special needs credentials open up more opportunities than working in K-12 schools. Early intervention is incredibly beneficial for these kids.
Pursuing a master’s degree in education online in addition to having experience in special education could allow you to work in preschools, day-care centers, and with social workers to help children identified as having issues.
A Master Teacher
A master teacher is an experienced teacher who becomes the head of teachers in a particular subject area like math or English. Master teachers mentor other teachers and ensure that students are meeting specific academic standards.
Alternatively, you could become a mentor teacher, mentoring new teachers and helping them become comfortable in the classroom.
The next career step for these teachers is becoming a department chair, though they could also become a grade level chair. A grade level chair would manage all teachers teaching a specific grade level. These jobs are natural stepping stones to a job in K-12 administration.
An Instructional Specialist
An instructional specialist teaches other teachers how to teach more effectively. They also review the curriculum, identifying better ways to teach the concepts to children in an engaging, age-appropriate level.
They will also learn about various technologies and tools and teach other teachers how to use them effectively in the classroom. This job prepares you to work in governmental agencies making educational policy or providing consulting services to educators.
Teachers make a difference in the lives of their students and the number of teaching jobs open to aspiring teachers allows you to choose a path that allows you to do the most good.