Early childhood education is one career area that is in high demand. With many school boards now taking a different approach to hiring and looking to add secondary teaching and assistant positions within schools, the need for early childhood educators is at an all-time high. Early childhood degrees are often viewed as the happy medium between a teaching degree and a social worker diploma. There is a lot of overlap between the two and going to early childhood school is the perfect option for people that want to work with younger children.
How To Become An Early Childhood Educator
If you are interested in ECE and want to go to early childhood school, the following will outline the steps to become an early childhood educator from getting your early childhood degree to landing a career in this area.
1. Decide to focus on ECE: The first step in the process is deciding that you want to go to early childhood school and start a career in this area.
2. Choose a College: In most cases, students do their early childhood degree in college. Most early childhood degrees are 2 years in length with the option to do a third year. Some universities are starting to offer ECE programs as well.
3. Select your early childhood courses: The early childhood courses that you choose with your electives will have an impact on your area of specialization. Also, make sure that you sign up for an early childhood course internship to gain practical experience.
4. Do a work placement: Having the change to work with children in a school or daycare setting is very important. You need the hands on experience to supplement what you learn during early childhood school in order to refine your skills and abilities.
5. Consider post graduate options: Depending on what your career goals are, it may be wise to continue early childhood school at the graduate level. There are many post graduate programs that are great complements to an early childhood school diploma. This choice could also open the door to more opportunities and help increase earning potential.
6. Look for a job: Once you complete your early childhood degree, it is time to start looking for a job. To get a head start, it is important to do volunteer work and try to work part time while you are in school and during the summer. Employers always want someone that has experience and if you have experience along with a degree, you will increase your odds of getting a job right out of school.
7. Develop your skills: Your education does not stop with early childhood school. If you want to move up in the industry and meet your career goals, you need to continue your education through professional development after you graduate from early childhood school. You can often take courses online to build your credentials.
Follow these steps and you will be well on your way to a career as an early childhood educator.