In the United States, there is a great demand for educators who can effectively teach physics to high school students. There is currently a widespread shortage of physics teachers in the United States. If you have always excelled in science and love to teach, then this may be a great career option for you. Individuals who are currently entering this profession have the power to negotiate their salaries and even teach part-time if they desire. Here are the steps that you should take in order to fulfill your dream of becoming a physics teacher.
Refine Your Interest in Math and Science
If you decide that you do want to become a physics teacher, it is essential that you enjoy learning about math and science. If you do not enjoy either of these subjects, then you will not enjoy teaching physics to students. The field of physics is usually one of the most difficult subjects that a student will study in high school. He or she may require additional help throughout the semester. To prepare yourself for the demands of this career, try to take as many math and science classes as you can through high school, college and graduate programs. This will help you prepare for the challenges that you face in the classroom.
Pursue Your Undergraduate Degree
After you have decided that you have a strong interest in math and science, you should take the time to pursue your undergraduate degree in teaching. The Physics Teacher Education Coalition is attempting to place more teachers into the field who have a specialization in physics. Currently, only one-third of physics teachers actually have a specialization in physics. You should try to pursue an undergraduate degree that has an emphasis in physics. This will make you a more attractive candidate for positions in private schools and colleges. You may also have an easier time in obtaining a position at a local community college for teaching an intro-level physics course.
Take the Praxis Exam
Most high schools now require that you take the Praxis exam to prove that you have a thorough knowledge of the field of physics. Try to take the Praxis exam before you begin applying for positions at high schools. This will make the process of finding a job easier for you, since employers will be more willing to invest in a teacher who has proven his or her knowledge of physics by passing this exam.
Gain Experience Before Applying
Before you begin applying for teaching positions, you may want to try getting a position as a physics tutor with a local tutoring company. If you do not have a tutoring company in your town, then try looking online for tutoring jobs. The Internet now provides you with thousands of opportunities to serve as a tutor for students. You can earn a great income by doing online tutoring while you are still looking for a job at a high school. You can also ask local schools to place you on a list for referrals. Some schools keep lists of local tutors in the area for concerned parents who want to help their children. By gaining experience in teaching physics to students ahead of time, you can gain confidence in your teaching abilities before you get out into the “real world.” You can also make your resume more attractive by including this experience on your resume.
When you want to succeed in the world of teaching, pursuing a physics teaching degree can be the right start. Your career will be in demand for years to come, and you can make a difference in the lives of students.