Elementary Education Degrees in New Mexico
If you want a career that lets you use your skills to help people, you may have considered a career in teaching. Teaching is one of the most in-demand professions in the United States, and this is especially true in states with large rural populations. This includes New Mexico, which is full of small remote communities. Studying elementary education at the Bachelor’s or Master’s degree level could help you open up a whole new career opportunity for yourself.
Becoming an Elementary Teacher in New Mexico
Is a degree in elementary education the right move for you? Learn more about what it takes to get started in this field by contacting top elementary education programs in New Mexico today.
New Mexico is a promising place for new teachers. The legislators in this state highly value education and the impact it can have on society. In recent years, New Mexico’s funding sources have significantly decreased. Despite this, the state has continued to maintain high funding levels for public education (Albuquerque Journal, 2017). They note that they have higher per-pupil spending rates than many neighboring states. Support from lawmakers and community members can make it much easier to advocate for your students and get the resources you need.
As education continues to evolve, New Mexico’s need for highly trained teachers may continue to grow. If you’re ready to become part of this movement, get in touch with elementary education programs now.
Getting Your Elementary Education Degree in New Mexico
As you start to explore elementary education programs, you may realize that there are two main levels of training for aspiring teachers. The less common option is a Master’s degree. Master’s in elementary education programs require a Bachelor’s degree in elementary education or a related field. You may get accepted to one of these programs with a different educational background, depending on which school you choose to attend. A Master’s in education requires between 30 and 45 credits, which you may be able to finish in two to three years.
By far, Bachelor’s programs are much more common in New Mexico. A Bachelor’s degree gives you the training you need to apply for a teaching license and start an entry-level career in this field. From start to finish, a Bachelor’s degree lasts approximately four years. During this timeframe, plan on earning at least 120 credits.
In the early stages of your training, you may not take any teaching courses. Most institutions accept you to the school first and require you to apply to the teaching program separately. This process involves passing a general knowledge exam and submitting letters of references.
Once you get into the teaching program, you start taking courses that combine classroom experience and teaching theory. There’s a lot to cover in the teaching field, so it’s important to take courses in order and use the information to build on your existing knowledge.
Elementary Education Course Options in New Mexico
- Pedagogy in Educational Reform
- Educational Psychology
- Multicultural Education
- Integrating Technology with Learning
- Language, Literacy, and Culture
- Elementary School Science
- Elementary School Mathematics
- Elementary School Literacy
- Curriculum, Methods, and Materials
As noted, classroom experience is required in your teaching program. In the first semester of the teaching program, you may only spend a few hours per week in your assigned classroom. As you move through your courses, you may spend more time in nearby schools while taking on teaching responsibilities. The most time-consuming part of your practical experience is student teaching. New Mexico teaching programs require an entire semester of student teaching.
Some students, particularly those with full-time jobs or families, are interested in elementary education online degree programs. However, since school experience is such a huge part of your training, there’s no way to do 100% of your degree online. At some schools, you may be able to take general education courses and theory courses online.
Once you have finished your degree in elementary education, you may apply for your teaching license. All license applications go through the New Mexico Public Education Department. There are three levels of licensure: Level 1, Level 2, and Level 3A. New Mexico has developed its own assessment exams. You have to take the elementary education K-8 New Mexico Content Knowledge Assessment before receiving your license.
When you start working as a teacher, you may have the ability to change the educational system from the inside out. By working with students and administrators every day, you can use policies and research to change the way students learn.
There’s no time like right now to start changing your future. Discover local training options in the field of education by contacting elementary education programs today.
Working as an Elementary Educator in New Mexico
The field of teaching has grown substantially in New Mexico in recent years. As a result, job openings have been steadily increasing for several years. From 2014 through 2024, job openings for elementary school teachers may jump 8% in New Mexico (O*Net, 2017). Salaries in New Mexico are in line with national averages. The average income for a New Mexico elementary school teacher is $58,090 per year (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2017).
Within the state of New Mexico, there are many associations and organizations that support teachers. You may be able to join some of these groups while you’re still a student; many offer scholarships. If you aren’t active in local teaching groups, make that a priority as you start your career. The National Education Association of New Mexico is a great starting point, since it can connect you to local teachers, administrators, and employers.
As a member of local teaching groups, you can enjoy a wide variety of benefits. You may need continuing education to keep your license current, and many groups host continuing education seminars to help members keep their licenses current. Many groups also host networking events that may help you build a solid professional network.
Take advantage of this opportunity to learn more about becoming a teacher in New Mexico. Contact teaching programs in your community to get the ball rolling.
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