How To Become Health Teacher
How To Become A Health Teacher
Becoming a health teacher is not an easy task. You have to have the right education, experience and certifications so that you can get hired as a health teacher. Here is what you need to do if you want to become a health teacher:
-You need at least a bachelor’s degree in elementary or secondary education, or physical education. This includes courses in human anatomy, physiology, biology and chemistry. You also need coursework in teaching methods, social sciences and physical education pedagogy. Some schools may require additional coursework outside of this area as well.
-You must also get certified in order for you to be able to teach health classes at the high school level or above. The certification process varies from state to state but most states require teachers who wish to teach health classes to complete some form of training program along with passing an exam that tests their knowledge of various subjects related to health education such as nutrition and first aid techniques among others.
How To Become Health Teacher
Most states include health education as part of middle and high school curriculum. Health teachers, as certified educators in the field, are essential to teaching this area of social science. Understanding more about health education may help you decide if this specialization may be for you. In this article, we explore what a health teacher is, what a health teacher does, what skills benefit a health teacher and how to become one.
Related: How To Become a Teacher
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What is a health teacher?
Health teachers are educators who help students better understand human health, anatomy and physiology. They teach students about important social and social science information such as hygiene, proper nutrition, the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse and the importance of healthy lifestyles. Health teachers are usually in charge of instruction about puberty and sexual education. They often help students understand and handle many of the changes that come with adolescence and add to students’ awareness of general health and bodily functions.
They work for public and private schools, usually at the middle and high school levels. Depending on the school and state, a health teacher may also combine specialties in order to work full time, or they may work for multiple schools in a district. For example, one high school’s health teacher may teach some health classes and some physical education classes, while another middle school health teacher teaches health classes in all four middle schools in their district.
Related: The 10 Best States for Teachers
What does a health teacher do?
Health teachers adhere to educational and moral standards while informing students about human anatomy and general health. The health teacher can also be responsible for:
- Explaining complex concepts: Health teachers explain complex anatomy, physiology and general health concepts in a simpler terminology and format for students.
- Instruction on hygiene: Hygiene is part of personal health, and a health teacher can be responsible for teaching students about the importance of personal hygiene and how to maintain it.
- Puberty and sexual education: Adolescence is a time of great bodily changes, and a health teacher educates growing students about puberty and how to handle hormonal changes. Sexual awareness and education can help teens make better decisions about their sexual health, including protection, birth control options and other considerations. Health teachers also inform students about the effects of STDs and teen pregnancy.
- Ethical standards: Health teachers adhere to strict ethical and moral standards set forth by the education system and individual institutions.
- Grades: A health teacher is responsible for grading assignments and posting term grades.
- State testing: Health teachers prepare students for state testing and provide practice tests in some cases.
- Classroom maintenance: The health teacher is responsible for maintaining a clean, organized classroom and facilitating learning in an environment with minimal distraction.
Related: Highest Pay For Teachers by State
Skills to succeed as a health teacher
Health teachers bring specific skills to the job and learn industry hard skills during their education. These skills are important when becoming an effective health teacher:
- Patience: Health teachers work closely with students and explain complex subjects. This requires a certain level of patience and understanding and presents a unique opportunity to work with the youth.
- Compassion: Teachers are an integral part of a child’s life, and compassion is crucial to how teachers understand their students. Compassion helps teachers better realize the needs of their students and creates a better learning environment for everyone.
- Love for learning: Being a teacher is a lifelong learning journey as much as it is a teaching journey. Teachers who bring a passion for learning help inspire students and motivate them to continue their education.
- Knowledge of the human body: Health teachers instruct students on the important topic of personal health. This instruction requires a firm understanding of how the body works in order to modify it for student understanding. Good health information can benefit students throughout their life.
- Communication skills: Health teachers communicate with students and staff daily, and they occasionally communicate with parents when discussing a child’s education. This requires strong language skills and plenty of patience.
- Problem-solving skills: Teachers need problem-solving skills to help students navigate complex scientific and personal subjects and to address difficult situations.
Related: 24 Reasons You Should Become a Teacher
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How to become a health teacher
Anyone can become a health teacher, however, there are specific requirements for becoming a certified teacher. These requirements often vary by state, but here are the basic requirements for becoming a health teacher:
1. Obtain a degree
Teachers need a bachelor’s degree in order to become a state certified teacher. Health teachers, specifically, benefit from a bachelor’s degree in health science or education. Most colleges and universities have an education program, and many of them also offer health education divisions and health science. You usually complete these programs on campus, but if you are looking for flexibility, you can complete some programs entirely online.
2. Gain your state licensure
Each state differs in their regulations for teaching licenses, but every state has standards you have to meet in order to become a teacher. Some certifications require a bachelor’s degree, on-the-job experience and passing a state-approved skills test. Meeting these requirements allows you to gain a state educator licensure and seek employment as a health teacher. Some states also offer temporary licenses for those who don’t have immediate experience but need a license in order to complete testing.
3. Start teaching and build experience
After a state licensure, many health teachers find employment and begin working to gain experience. You can find opportunities for health positions in both public and private school settings, or possibly get a position within the school you completed your student teaching. Keep teaching and build experience, as this may create opportunities for a higher salary or better working conditions.
4. Attend a graduate program
Many teachers complete a graduate program and earn a master’s degree in their respective field. You can choose advanced education to further your learning and expand your opportunities. A master’s degree makes you very well-qualified to teach health education to others.
5. Continue your education
Throughout your teaching career, you may come across opportunities such as seminars, certification programs or other curriculum for expanding your skill set. Gaining more certifications or knowledge can help you perform better in your job and grant you opportunities in the field.