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Middle School Education and Teaching - Overview


Middle school education and teaching programs prepare people to teach children in middle or junior high school. Students learn to teach various subjects at the fifth through ninth grade levels. They also learn to plan lessons and create projects that will motivate and challenge their students.

You probably will never teach at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry or help students prepare for the Ordinary Wizarding Levels (O.W.L.) exams. But as a middle school teacher, you could very well encounter students with the same confusion, mood swings, and raging hormones as Harry Potter in "The Order of the Phoenix."

Many readers have commented that Harry's anger makes the fifth book in the series darker than previous books. But if you ever experienced confusion and turbulence during your own adolescence, it's not hard to see why worldwide, most fans have expressed empathy for this 15-year-old wizard.

In middle school, school work gets harder, and the homework increases. But it's also a time when students start expressing their own ideas and taking more independent roles in their educations. If you love teaching, and appreciate the rocky emotional, physical, and intellectual journeys of middle and junior high school students, then middle school education and teaching may be the program for you.

As a student in this program, you learn about the growth and development of adolescents, and the kinds of issues that they typically encounter. You use this knowledge as a basis for learning how to teach different academic subjects to them. You study different teaching methods that people have used in the past. You also get a chance to practice teaching yourself.

Many schools offer accredited programs in middle school education and teaching. In these programs, you can earn a certificate, a bachelor's, or a master's degree. Certificate programs in middle school teaching are typically not stand-alone; this means that you usually can't earn a certificate unless you combine your studies with bachelor's degree course work as well.

As with a bachelor's degree program, this kind of combined program typically takes four to five years of full-time study after high school. A master's degree usually takes five to seven years.

In one case, you can get a doctoral degree in middle school education. After high school, this generally takes about ten to eleven years of full-time study.

When you major in middle school education and teaching, you typically choose to focus on one or two particular subjects you want to teach. These subjects might include:

• Language Arts
• Math
• Science
• Social Science
• Special Education

Source: Illinois Career Information System (CIS) brought to you by Illinois Department of Employment Security.
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