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Balancing your checkbook. Planning a monthly budget. Figuring out how much to tip at a restaurant. Think about the skills you use every day that started as nuggets of information learned from a teacher in grade school. Good math teachers have the skills and techniques to change a student's life forever, and if you have ever considered teaching mathematics, it can be a very rewarding career.
Mathematics teacher jobs require specialized knowledge and training that prepare you to help students become comfortable with, and even enjoy, solving problems. In earlier grades, you'll apply industry-current teaching strategies to help them solve basic math problems requiring simple addition and subtraction. As their confidence grows and their capacity to understand more complex theories expands, you'll help them make the transition to middle and high school math, where more complex geometric theorems and algebraic equations will be part of their curriculum. If you can learn how to engage young learners and help them feel confident in their mathematical abilities, you'll play a key role in helping them develop skills they will use for the rest of their lives.
Besides teaching elementary or high school math, there are many directions a degree in mathematics can take you. According to CollegeExpress, math teaches its students logic and analytical thinking, which helps in most careers.
What will you do with your mathematics education? Armed with a bachelor's degree and specialized knowledge in teacher education foundations and diversity, instructional planning, and presentation and mathematics, you can be well on your way to becoming a math teacher or pursuing a career as a:
Positions in the field.
“Because of WGU, I’m going to be a math teacher. It’s opened so many doors!” Mike Johnson
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for elementary, middle, and high school teachers is expected to grow about 8% from 2016 to 2026, which is above the average for all occupations. Employment growth in this field will be fueled by a growing number of retiring teachers, increased student enrollment, and decreased student-teacher ratios.
WGU has industry-aligned degrees to help you reach your career goals. A few you may find interesting are:
As you might imagine, most elementary and high school math teachers work in schools during regular school hours, but many also spend time in the evenings and on weekends grading papers and preparing lessons. A teacher's calendar appeals to many. Those working a traditional 10-month school year will typically have a 2-month break during the summer, while teachers employed in districts with year-round schedules usually work 8 weeks in a row, followed by a one-week break, in addition to a 5-week winter break.
Many professional organizations are dedicated to the field of teaching and mathematics careers. If this is your calling, here are a few places to learn more about the profession.
Find out how far education and training can take you in your quest for a career in information technology, with a specialization in security. These links can help you discover what it's like to be at the forefront of a growing industry:
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, preschool, secondary, and special-education teachers earned a median annual wage of $54,720 in May of 2016. High school teachers earned more, with an annual median wage of $58,030. Of course, salaries vary depending on degrees and credentials, years of experience, location, and other factors.
Teaching mathematics requires at least a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution, and public school teachers must have a state-issued certification or license. Many schools also require teachers to be proficient in a specific content area, such as math. To receive your state teaching certification, you'll need to complete a period of fieldwork, commonly referred to as student teaching, during which time you'll work with a mentor teacher as you gain experience in a live classroom setting.
Ready to jump-start your career in teaching math? The next step could be earning your B.A. in Mathematics. Accredited, competency-based WGU offers this degree online for at a surprisingly affordable flat-rate tuition. Flexible enough for a working adult’s schedule with the option to accelerate, your degree may be closer than you think!
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