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Explore a Teaching Career

Think teaching might be right for you? Get an overview of what to expect.

Get the Certification Guide

As a teacher, no two days are the same. You’ll work alongside passionate colleagues, build powerful relationships with your students and immerse yourself in subject matter you love. 

You’ll also build skills that will serve you for the rest of your life — like leadership, creative problem-solving and stellar communication.

Is teaching a good fit?

An elementary school teacher crouches next to a student's desk, patiently helping her with an assignment.

There’s no one way to be a great teacher. To decide if teaching is right for you, it’s important to do your research, reflect and talk to as many people as you can.

Start with some basic questions: 

  • Do you enjoy being around kids? From Pre-K to high school, chances are there’s an age group you’ll like working with! 
  • Do you love a challenge? Teaching comes with big rewards and hard work. If you love to learn and challenge yourself, chances are you’ll do just fine. 
  • Do you have a genuine passion for an academic subject? Calling all history buffs, book worms and data nerds! Enthusiasm for your teaching subject is contagious. 
  • What’s your motivation? There are as many reasons to teach as there are teachers. Getting clear on your reason can help you stay focused through ups and downs. 

With these questions in mind, you can try out teaching and learn about the career.

Try Out Teaching

A school volunteer sits with a group of high school students in a circle on the floor, laughing with them

Want to try teaching before you commit? There are tons of ways to get a feel for the career and explore subjects and age groups you might want to teach. Here are a few ideas: 

  • Look for part-time positions as a teaching assistant (also called a paraeducator or paraprofessional), substitute teacher or tutor. 
  • Volunteer in a classroom.
  • Help with an after school program. 

Plus, if you decide teaching is right for you, relevant experience on your resume will help you stand out!

Natalie Peterson headshot

Over the past nine years as a public educator one thing I have found is that teaching is never boring. Each day brings exciting opportunities and challenges. Each class brings new students with different education, language, and home experiences. And each year allows for a chance to try a new learning strategy, classroom design, or parent communication idea.

Natalie Peterson

Learn About the Career

You might have questions about a teaching career, like what kind of salary and growth opportunities you can expect. Let’s take a look.

See What Others are Asking

A diverse group of future teachers are in their teaching program classroom, holding books and laughing together

Some questions you’ve thought of, some you probably haven’t. That’s why it’s so helpful to hear what others are asking.

Take a peek at our FAQs, a comprehensive collection of common questions people have as they explore a teaching career.

Read FAQs About Teaching

Talk to an Expert

An aspiring future teacher sits at a table talking with a mentor

Want to talk to a real teacher about their experience? TEACH.org offers free career advising with expert teachers in each of our regions.

Learn more, or find out how to connect with teachers in your state.


  1. Educator Pay Data. National Education Association. April 24, 2023. nea.org/resource-library/educator-pay-and-student-spending-how-does-your-state-rank

  2. Education, Training and Library Occupations, Occupational Outlook Handbook. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/home.htm