Early childhood educators are an important part of our society. They are responsible for helping to cultivate the healthy educational foundation for our children and, as a direct result, to shape their lives as well as the communities in which they are growing up in. As such, becoming an early childhood educator can be an incredibly fulfilling job.
However, before you pursue an education in order to become an early childhood educator, you might be wondering what a career in childhood education holds for you. The last thing you want to do is to enter a field where jobs are limited, after all. Job stability and the opportunity for growth are important. Fortunately, there are plenty of places where you'll be able to work as an early childhood educator. The following are just a few examples of job opportunities that could be available to you should you pursue a career as an early childhood educator:
Preschool and Elementary School Teachers
The most obvious option is to become a preschool or elementary school teacher. Children in preschool are facing major developmental changes. They need to have a creative, safe, and nurturing environment in order to develop. You can obtain an entry-level position at a preschool as an assistant teacher or teacher's aide. Preschool teachers can work at a variety of locations as well, including public schools, private schools, childcare centers, and industry care centers.
Elementary school teachers hold a similar position in that they are helping children to develop; however, because they are responsible for children from kindergarten through the fifth grade, they are also responsible for teaching more advanced topics, such as math, science, and literature. Additionally, they must manage the behavior of these children. To become an elementary school teacher, you must have a bachelor's degree along with state-issued certification.
Childhood Development Researcher
As a childhood development researcher, you would be responsible for performing studies, appraising educational practices, and evaluating services related to the development of young children. You can work for a variety of organizations performing childhood development research, including non-profit organizations, for-profit organizations, government agencies, and universities. Your responsibilities will depend a lot on your experience. You may do everything from prepare grants for funding to collecting and analyzing data to publishing findings in scientific magazines. However, to become a childhood development researcher, you will need to have a Ph.D. in early childhood education.
Family Support Specialist
There are many families who need the help of a family support specialist because they are in a situation in which their children may be in jeopardy (for example, the family is going through a divorce or has lost their home). A family support specialist helps families in need by providing information on how they can obtain assistance via community services to find the right housing, employment, and transportation to support their children. To be an effective family support specialist, you will need to be knowledgeable about child development, local resources, and childcare regulations.
Childcare Center Director
As a childcare center director, you would be responsible for the day-to-day operations of a childcare center, such as a daycare or preschool. Most states do require a bachelor's degree in early childhood education. Some of your responsibilities may include training and supervising staff, establishing standards and objectives, maintaining relationships with the parents, preparing budgets, developing programs, and more.
These are just a few examples of opportunities you can pursue throughout your career as a childhood educator. If becoming an early childhood educator sounds like a fulfilling career path for you, then be sure to contact us at Athena Career Academy today to find out more about our early childhood education program and how you can enroll.