Working with young children takes a special talent and commitment. Early childhood education majors know just how to present extremely young kids with lessons that are engaging and interesting, yet informative. Early childhood education teachers are important - after all, they're setting the stage for a child's academic future!
Early childhood education and teaching majors take courses that teach them how to instruct classes for children up through third grade, though ages may vary according to school district or state regulations. Classes focus on teaching strategies, classroom management, and child psychology, all aimed at the specific needs of young children.
Many courses are given in a typical classroom setting. Other classes require you to observe, interview, or engage with current teachers or students. Fieldwork is typically required your senior year; most programs conclude with a student teaching practicum, in which early childhood education and teaching majors engage in fieldwork and function as a classroom teacher for several months while being supervised by a licensed professional.
Students who graduate with an early childhood education and teaching degree generally work in the field of early childhood education. Some may stray from teaching K-3 and end up working as school psychologists, preschool teachers, or daycare directors. You may also choose to continue your studies in graduate school to further hone your skills and advance your career.