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Discussion in 'Elementary Education Archives' started by Elm512, Aug 5, 2006.

  1. Elm512

    Elm512 Companion

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    Aug 5, 2006

    Hello everyone,
    My name is Caitlin and I was hoping to ask you all a few questions. My dream is to be a teacher, and it is finally possible for me to start school. My husband is in the Airforce (we are stationed in Japan) and we are going to be in one place long enough now for me to get at least 3 years of schooling done. I plan on finishing the last year when we return to the states in 2009. I have always wanted to teach younger kids, Kinder. through 2nd or 3rd grade. Currently, the only education degree plan available on island is a bachelors in early childhood education. My school counselor assured me that with this degree I will be qualified to teach children from pre/k-grade 3. I have done some research online and it seems like this is not the most desired degree and it's harder to get a job w/ it then a bach. in elementary education. If anyone has ANY info/comments, anything, on this matter, I would LOVE to hear it! Thank you for reading this far, and any help!!:thanks: :D

    ** Im not sure exactly where to post this so I may post it in a few spots, just a little warning in case you see the duble post!
     
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  3. mmis

    mmis Companion

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    Aug 5, 2006

    I teach with several people who have degrees in early childhood. I've never been at a school that thought one was better than the other. The only real plus for an element. degree is that usually you can teach 1st thru 5th or 6th grade instead of just K-2. I'd go ahead and work on the early childhood degree if that's what you want to teach. Who knows- later on you might want your masters degree and can add on elementary at that time.
    Good luck!
     
  4. MelissainGA

    MelissainGA Groupie

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    Aug 5, 2006

    Caitlin,

    First off congratulations on finally getting the chance to complete your degree. Second, here in Georgia if you have an early childhood degree then you would definitely be a "hot property" because you have more specialization in your specific grade levels. Also as mmis said later if you wanted to get your masters in an area that included elementary level or something such as reading specialist (that's what I have mine in) then that makes you just that much more of an asset. Good luck and you will love the world of early elementary education because they are usually a riot, at least my last 3 groups of second graders have been.
     
  5. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Aug 5, 2006

    Hi, Caitlin, and welcome to AtoZ. If that is all that is offered there, I say go for it and make good use of your time overseas. Keep us posted.
     
  6. leighbball

    leighbball Virtuoso

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    Aug 5, 2006

    Hi Caitlin!

    I have my degree in Early Childhood Ed and I loved it at my college because I got so much exposure to the beginning areas of school. My college program allowed me to get dual certfication in both elem and early childhood ed. But you might be able to get a teaching certificate in Elem Ed once you finish your first degree or like it was suggested, go back for your masters later.

    I've taught K, 2, and 3 so far and I think my background in Early Childhood has been very helpful:)

    I say go for it! And good luck!
     
  7. heart4kids

    heart4kids Rookie

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    I have a degree in Early Childhood and I am certified to teach K-6. I taught Pre-K briefly but I have been teaching 3rd grade for the past four years. My experience has been that no one cares what degree I have as long as I am certified to teach the grade that they need filled! Plus, if I ever want to go back to the lower grades I would use my degree as a selling point. I say go for it! I enjoyed my early childhood classes. Good luck!
     
  8. Beth2004

    Beth2004 Maven

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    In my experience, principals that are trying to fill the primary grades are much more interested in people with an Early Childhood cert. My BSE and licensure is in elementary so I am licensed to teach 1-6, but I think most principals would rather have someone who is licensed to teach prek-3 in a 1st or 2nd grade classroom.
     
  9. mrsnoble116

    mrsnoble116 Companion

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    With my bachelor's, you couldn't be certified in PreK and K. They were separate. So, you could choose 1-8, but now it's 1-3 and 4-8...I think.

    Pre K and K are considered Early Childhood (from what plans I went through in college). If you plan on doing Pre K and K, I say go for it.
     
  10. MOBO

    MOBO Rookie

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    Aug 6, 2006

    I teach in Tennessee. Students coming out of the Univ. of TN. either certify 1-8, or Pre-K-4; We have Pre-K-4 interns in our building and they never seem to have trouble getting a job after graduation! Best of luck to you!!!!
     
  11. Ms.Jasztal

    Ms.Jasztal Maven

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    Congratulations on your opportunity, Caitlin. I would say that going for your Bachelors in Elementary Education is a wise choice- because you can be certified in K-6. I found that I changed my mind about the grade level I desired to teach over time- originally it was 1st-2nd, and now it's 4th-5th. Yet if you are very focused on teaching the youngest, then perhaps the other degree is best.
     
  12. Elm512

    Elm512 Companion

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    Aug 6, 2006

    Thank you all so much for your very helpful replies!!!
    Ideally, I would love to get a degree in elementary education w/ a certificate in ECE but unfortunetly it is not possible for me... the only degree they are offering on this island is the bach. in early childhood education. I would love to go back to get my Masters!!!
    Now I have another question for you all, Im sure it will sound silly to most of you but remember I am just starting out on this venture!
    Ok, I have started towards a degree w/ the core classes that everyone needs. Right now, Math and English. I haven't been exposed to any education classes yet.
    Basically, I just want to know how it works. Is it 3 1/2 years of classes and 6 months student teaching? After you graduate, how do you get a ceritifcate to teach in your state? Also, I've seen a lot of programs to go from on aas ECE to a bachelors online, how is that possible? I thought you had to student teach before you could graduate?
     
  13. MOBO

    MOBO Rookie

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    Aug 6, 2006

    At the Univ. of TN. the education students go thru the 4 yr. education program, and during this time they do some practicum experience along the way at the lab school and in county schools. They must graduate, enter the Masters program, and then they get to student teach for 1 full year! You don't have to complete the masters program, but you must enter it to student teach - lots of extra $$$ for students.

    My last intern came from a smaller college - she went to school for 3 1/2 years, and student taught her last semester before getting her degree and license. So, you can see, it just depends on the program that you are in.

    Are you taking classes on base thru the extended learning center? That is how my son finished his degree after he went into the Air Force. I was so thankful that it was there for him!
     
  14. leighbball

    leighbball Virtuoso

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    I can only speak of my experience, but for me I had 4 years of classes that included my general ed/core classes and my education classes. My freshman year I had a spring observation course where I went to local schools and observed how they taught, etc. My sophomore year, I had a practicum in a nursery school in the fall and a child study practicum in the spring at another local school. In the fall of my junior year, I had an entire semester of methods courses (in reading, math, sci, ss, creative arts, etc) and a practicum with another student from my program, in a full day kindergarten class. My senior year I did a semester of student teaching in 3rd grade. I also took a class on diagnosing reading difficulties during student teaching. The rest of the time I was taking classes for my second major (psychology) and finishing general ed requirements.

    As for the certification, I went directly through the college, but you can apply online in NJ...directly to the Department of Ed in NJ. In NJ, you get issued a Certificate of Eligibility with Advanced Standing when you graduate college, and after a year of teaching and meeting the requirements (observations, etc), you will be issued a standard certificate (which is good for life...other states make you reapply every few years).

    As you get further along in your program, start looking into the licensing requirements for the states where you want to teach. Some states have different requirements, such as different Praxis tests, etc. For example, in NJ to be an elementary teacher, you only need 1 test, but there are 5 or so to be certified in PA. NJ is just coming out with a Praxis test for early childhood educators.

    Hope that helps! Good luck!!!! :)
     

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