I have seen a lot of very creative billboard ideas that look great and are very clever - but after all that work to set them up - are they really making a difference with the students in your classroom?
The most under-resourced, yet critical topic that should be taught in upper elementary is the subject of career choices. If you are looking for bulletin board ideas, this is an area where you can really make a difference in the future of your students.
Career education for kids can have a long term impact -⅔ of all adults regret their career path or college major because they were not prepared to make this critical choice at high school graduation.
When evaluating all of the options you have for teaching social studies in your classroom, there is no topic that will truly follow a child longer than career education. Elementary school is the time when kids should start being exposed to role models and activities that help them decide what things they want to start excelling in, so that they can focus middle school and highschool on exploring their options and making this choice. To learn more about this research, visit the teachers section of my website.
The best way to teach the topic of career choices to kids is through real world role models, not clip art. Kids need to know more about what it takes to do the job and real examples of people doing those jobs. Not just, "here is frank the farmer - he grows food."
Here are 3 easy steps to create a career-education bulletin board that will last all year and truly stick with your students.
Start the school year off with a blank board that asks only, “Who Are You?” and presents the name of each of the 6 career personality types- be as creative as you want (more on the personality types below).
These bulletin board ideas tease the fact that you will be spending the school year helping kids figure out who they are. This DOES NOT mean you will be helping them give a single answer to “what do you want to be when you grow up?” It does mean, however, you will help them find the areas of interest where they can explore role models and activities.
You can use your own paper and stencils, however, each FREE “bulletin board ideas for elementary social studies” kit comes with everything you need to get started. Sign up below to be directed to your free kit.
The “Dream It and Do It” Career Curriculum includes 100 different stories featuring real world role models. Assign students to read the stories that pertain to their personality. This can include stories where they are a match to the primary or secondary personality type. You can also encourage students to read stories that are not a match as a point of contrast. For a full list of the 100 role models go HERE.
Each of the 100 stories:
Features a different real-world career role model
Tells the story of how their childhood impacted their skills and choices
Is available on Teachers Pay Teachers and comes with retention questions, self-reflection questions, activities and research project.
As part of the FREE bulletin board kit on Teachers Pay Teachers, each illustration is ready for printing and easy cut out. Sign up for your FREE kit below.
As students show interest in certain role models, have them take one of the illustrations of that person and add them to the bulletin board with their name written on it.
Students can and should add more than one role model - so leave lots of room. The bulletin board will begin to grow and be filled in by students who will get to see their choices/role models featured every day until it is full of career role models that your class looks up to.
Note: As of publishing this, the stories are on TPT sorted by career path, not personality type. Please use this link to guide students towards the stories that they should read. Before the start of the 2021 school year, the stories will be resorted by personality type.
Take advantage of career day each April. Instead of frantically searching for another "surface level" clip-art program to teach on career day, you will be ready to go with a program that all of your parents will be eager and pleased to be a part of.
As part of career day, have each child present to the class the various role models that appealed to them and why. If you desire, they can choose the one that stood out to them the most and do a more in-depth presentation on that specific career. There are additional resources on Teachers Pay Teachers that help guide you through this exercise and even give you a letter that is easy to complete that can be sent home to parents.
The Next Generation's Career Coach
I am the author of “Dream It and Do It- Career Role Models”. I have been featured on national news stations around American and won 5 various children’s book awards for my work helping children find their path in life. If you are interested in learning more about me and the "Dream It and Do It" book and career curriculum - join me HERE.
Want to learn more about helping teachers find your content - visit - http://kaysemorris.com/blogpost Title: 7 Helpful Tips on How to Blog Like a Boss