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Become a teacher after your Au Pair stay

by NiamhReading time: 4 min.
Becoming a teacher after your Au Pair stay
Looking for something  new and exciting to do after your Au Pair year ? If you enjoyed working with your Host Children during your Au Pair stay why not consider becoming a teacher.

What does a Teacher do?

The tasks and duties of a teacher vary greatly depending on the subject they teach and the age of the children. In primary school the teacher is expected to teach a number of subjects to the students while in a secondary school teacher will usually  just teach two subjects. In primary school the teachers focus on math, reading, writing, science, and art. While a secondary school teacher works to challenge their students to prepare and often sit exams for University.
The main role of a teacher is to deliver instruction that helps students learn. Teachers must prepare effective lessons, grade student’s work and offer feedback, manage classroom materials, collaborate with other staff and meet with student’s parents/guardians. In addition to having the role of a teacher, teachers often have the role of a mentor or counselor. They offer guidance and help to their students not only with academic issues but often also with the personal and social issues their students encounter. In particular primary school teachers have the responsibility of being good role models. They contribute to their students development. They help children realize the difference between right and wrong and help them develop their social skills.

How much does a teacher earn?

The salary of a teacher varies greatly and usually depends on the level of seniority and whether you teach in a private or public school. In Germany a primary teacher earns roughly between €38,200-  €51,400 a year. While secondary school teacher can earn  €45,500 - €64,000. In Luxembourg, the salary is significantly higher where a teacher can earn up to  €100,000 annually. In the United States  a teacher's salary can begin at approximately €31,000. However, like most public jobs teachers salaries can change due to financial crisis or changes in the government.

How to become a teacher 

For both primary teachers and secondary school teacher a bachelor's degree is required. The degree will usually last three or four years depending on which country to study in. As part of your degree you will have the opportunity to do a placement in a school to get hands on experience teaching pupils. The next step is to become certified or licensed. This will depend on the country you are studying. However, usually after completing a bachelor's degree the graduate teacher is expected to spend a year doing student teaching. During the year the teacher is required to attend courses and seminars while also complete a number of hours of supervised teachers. During the student teacher placement the teacher will have inspectors come and sit in on lessons. On successful completion of these steps the teacher can become certified or licensed as a teacher. Most teachers are required to complete a certain number of professional development course hours in order to maintain their teaching license or certification. 

Where to start?

The first step is to decide where you would like to study. You will need to think about this carefully as this will impact where you will be able to teach in the future. You will then have to research the requirements to study in the university. You must have the necessary results in your exams to attend the university and also the language skills. If you are considering teaching in a different country here is a website which ranks universities worldwide.While if you are thinking of studying in Europe this is a useful website which compares the course fees in different countries  The next step is then to prepare all the necessary documents and begin applying for the courses. In some countries it is necessary to prepare a personal statement (indicating your motivation in studying) provide references and do an interview with the course coordinator.

Is teaching right for me ?

If you are unsure if teaching is the right career for you there are some key questions you should ask yourself. There also is a list of skills and qualities (Below) needed to be a teacher. After self-reflecting on the questions and whether you possess the skills and qualities to be a teacher you can make a more informed decision. 

How much patience do you have?

One of the first things you want to ask yourself if you are considering teaching is: how much patience do you have? A lot of us think we have patience, but it is a skill. And that skill, and many others, are crucial to whether or not you can survive teaching in a classroom. 

Do you want to impact someone's life?

Teachers have the opportunity to impact many young people's lives.

Do you enjoy working with children?

Children can be highly energetic and difficult to manage in a classroom situation especially when you are responsible for 30 children. So you need to think if working with so many children would be enjoyable or more stressful for you.

Qualities and skills required by teachers

  • Enthusiasm
  • Leadership
  • Organisation skills
  • Respectful
  • Ability to multitask
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Ability to Teach
  • Communication skills
  • Friendliness and approachability
  • Emotional intelligence
  • Creativity

How being an Au Pair can help you become a teacher?

An Au Pair stay could be a great help when becoming a teacher. Working abroad adapting to any culture and language shows that you can adapt to new environments, have great interpersonal and communication skills, which are all required by teachers. During your Au Pair stay you had the opportunity to teach your Host Children your language and culture. These are all useful experiences that you would be able to mention in your interview or personal statement.
Not sure if teaching is right for you? Why not read about other possible careers after au pairing.
Free Registration as Candidate Free Registration as Family
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