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Advice from a Veteran: Recommended Courses for Education Majors

written by: Trent Lorcher•edited by: SForsyth•updated: 8/31/2012

Here's some advice for teachers you may not have heard: make yourself more valuable by taking education courses that will really prepare you for teaching and for life.

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    The Problem with Most Education Courses

    Does the following Education Course scenario sound familiar?

    "So Mr. Cheaptalk, how did you apply your classroom management theory when you taught high school?" I asked.

    "Well, sir, this theory takes into account all levels of students and has been integrated by Dr. Dolittle and backed by politicians, lawyers, and self help gurus," Mr. Cheaptalk replied.

    "Yes, but classroom application--"

    "We don't talk about application. My job is to teach you theory."

    "Mr. Cheaptalk, where did you teach high school?"

    "Ummm. Let's move on to our new theory, created by senators who have never actually attended a public school, but know what's best for public school students and teachers."

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    Courses Worth Taking

    Now that you've taken the required classes for graduation, it's time to focus on useful education courses. Some of these are offered at traditional universities and colleges. Others are offered as seminars or workshops.

    1. Classes taught by "Actual Teachers":
      With the advent of universities geared toward working adults, many education courses are now taught by actualy, full-time high school teachers. What a concept!!
    2. Personal Finance:
      Learn how to invest, manage money, and create wealth. Teachers have more free time than most professionals. You will spend the next 20-30 years telling students how important education is. Instead of telling them, show them by getting wealthy.
    3. Leadership:
      Great leaders are teachers and great teachers are leaders. Getting students to do what's best for them is the most important skill you can learn.
    4. Public Speaking:
      Most universities require students to take a speech class. I recommend something more intense. Your job is public speaking
    5. A Writing Course:
      Regardless of your subject area, you will be required to write. Parent contacts, grant proposals, newsletters, letters of recommendations, and evaluations are a sample of things you will write as a teacher. Take an online course on business and technical writing to sharpen your skills.
    6. Motivation:
      Attending motivational seminars, reading motivational books, and listening to motivational cds will help you discover ways to motivate your students.
    7. Time management:
      Managing your time well
      restores sanity to a stessed profession.
    8. Real Estate:
      Real estate has made many a teacher rich (and many a teacher bankrupt). I choose the former.
    9. Something You Enjoy:
      Learn how to ski, do pottery, program a computer or work on a car.
    10. Health and Fitness:
      Teaching is a sedentary profession. Learn health and fitness principles and keep yourself sharp.