Math Teacher Career Profile

If you enjoy working with numbers and would like to share your knowledge with others, you may be wondering what the career profile is for a math teacher.

Qualifications

The good news is that math teachers are in great demand because there is currently a shortage of qualified people for this profession. In order to be considered to teach math in elementary, middle, or high school, you will need to have at least a bachelor’s degree in math as well as a valid teacher certification from your state. If you know while you are attending college that you want to pursue teaching as a career, then you should also consider minoring in education and taking part in any teacher training program that the school offers. If you are planning to teach at the college or university level then you will have to earn at least a master’s degree. Also, you should be aware that many school districts will require you to have ongoing training and ultimately achieve your master’s degree.

Teaching Tasks

If you decide to teach at the elementary school level, don’t be surprised if you end up instructing subjects other than math, especially if you are teaching at the very early grade levels. For example, since first graders don’t usually leave the classroom except to attend special classes like P.E., you will be expected to teach these students math, reading, spelling, and any other subjects or material that the state determines they should know. As kids get older, they start to change classes instead of just staying in one room all day, and then teachers will begin to specialize in particular subjects. As a result, if you happen to teach kids at the middle grades or higher, you will most likely only be teaching math. You might be teaching the same math class several times to the same grade, or you could be teaching multiple classes to various grade levels, depending on the size of the school.

Basic Tasks

On any given day, you will have a variety of duties. Of course you will be expected to prepare the lesson for the day, including any handouts, notes, visual or audio material, games, or other educational materials students will need to complete the lesson. You will also assign homework to give students a chance to practice the skills they are learning in class. In addition, you will be grading papers and maintaining order in both your classroom and the halls. You may also be assigned lunchroom duty, monitoring the carpool lane, overseeing the gym where the bus riders wait either before or after school, maintaining order in the cafeteria during lunchtime, and any other duties your principal needs manpower for. In addition, you could be asked to sponsor the math club or some other school organization. Furthermore, you will have to talk with parents, attend meetings about various students, go to teacher in-service training, and meet with your principal to discuss a variety of matters.

Hours/Salary/Benefits

As a math teacher you can expect to earn anywhere from $35,000 to $70,000 per year depending on how long you have been teaching and the area of the country where you live. Most teachers work Monday through Friday from about eight in the morning until four in the afternoon. Teachers also usually have good health coverage and retirement benefits.  They get holidays off as well as a couple of months of vacation in the summer. Just realize that some of your ”off” time off will be spent in training classes as well as preparing lessons for next year, so it’s not actually not as much vacation time as many people think. Despite the many extra responsibilities that are part of a teaching career, it can still be very rewarding helping people learn, especially since many struggle with math and really need help understanding it.