HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. – Jennifer Carrion and her daughter 6-year old Madison meet with first grade teacher Rachael Peterson during a meet and greet at the primary school here Aug. 28. Children and parents were invited to come and meet their new teachers and visit the classroom that the children will be in for the upcoming school year. (U.S. Air Force photo by Mark Herlihy)

Teaching is a career that is quickly gaining popularity, with more and more people choosing to go into the education sector. Teaching is popular for a range of reasons, including the fact that teachers are able to work sociable hours, get weekends and school holidays off of work (and are paid for it), and is a career that will allow you to travel – teachers are needed in all corners of the globe.

Working in education might be a popular career choice, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that it is a good fit for you. Teaching isn’t for everyone – it takes a certain kind of person to be a teacher. Love the idea of becoming a teacher but aren’t sure that it’s the right career choice for you? Below is a guide to what it takes to be a successful teacher – have a read, take note, and consider whether teaching is the right career path for you.

(U.S. Air Force photo by Mark Herlihy)

Are you willing to undergo training?

The first question that you need to ask yourself is whether you are willing to undergo any training. To become a teacher, you are required to undertake a degree in teacher teaching – ask yourself is this is something that you are happy to do?

If the answer is yes and you are happy to undertake the required training, then teaching could be perfect for you. Obviously, it’s important to understand that it’s not just a degree that you will need to do, you may need to do more training further on, such as taking an Online Master in Curriculum and Instruction program, for instance. To be a teacher, you need to be willing to undergo training, as well as being happy to take the time to specialize in a certain area, such as early year’s education or a specific subject.

If the answer is no, then becoming a teacher may not be the right career path for you. If you don’t want to undertake a degree, perhaps a career as a teaching assistant or as a childminder could be a better option for you? As although some training is required, a degree isn’t needed for these roles.

Do you have the right characteristics to be a teacher?

Wondering what characteristics a teacher needs to have? There isn’t a set criteria to become a teacher; it’s just a case of working out whether your personality and mindset is a good fit for the educational sector.

Are you able to retain knowledge? As a teacher, whether that’s an early years teacher or a teacher for older children, you will need to be able to retain plenty of knowledge. Sure, you can research topics and put together notes, but being knowledgeable is also important, as you never know what questions your class will ask you.

Do you have good communication skills? It’s important that all teachers are good communicators, as this makes learning easier for kids. Teachers who are introverts tend to struggle to teach their children effectively, as they’re not keen to be loud or to make themselves heard. To be a successful teacher, you can’t be afraid to be loud and make your voice heard. You need to be a fantastic communicator and someone who can present lessons in an interesting and compelling way. As well as being able to build relationships with your pupils, you will also need to be able to build bonds with your colleagues and your pupil’s parents.  

Are you organized? If you are going to be a successful teacher, it’s vital that you are an organized individual. Teaching requires a lot of planning and preparation, which is why being organized is so vital.

Are you energetic and resilient? All of the best teachers are energetic and resilient individuals. Teaching is both emotionally and physically demanding, which means that you need to be energetic and have a resilient mental attitude. You need to understand how to effectively manage challenging behavior, handle stress effectively, and bounce back from any problems that arise. All the best teachers are resilient and are equipped to deal with whatever comes their way, because as a teacher you have to be.

To succeed as a teacher, you need to be someone who loves to learn and is passionate about sharing their knowledge with others. You need to be kind, caring and patient, and understand how to work in an organized and professional manner. You also need to be someone who’s sociable and a good communicator, as you will need to be comfortable communicating with students, other teachers, and parents, on a constant basis.