Careers: Teaching/teaching options


Hi, I recently volunteered twice a week in my 1st grader's classroom and enjoyed it so much that I decided to become certified as a Teachers Aide.  After thinking about it for a while I decided to look into what it would take for me to become a professional elementary school teacher.  I have looked into the requirements for New York state where I live and some college is required.  So I looked into Grants and Scholarships, but none of them seem to apply to me.  I am a stay at home parent, so money is limited and in order to get a degree, my best option would probably be to learn online if at all possible.  I am writing to ask if you can give me any information about Grants for people who want to go to college to learn to teach, or some kind of financial aide that I may be able to get to help me get my degree here in New York state?  If not, are there any other avenues that can lead to a career in teaching besides college? Any information you can give me to point me in the right direction would be highly appreciated.  Thanks, Danyel.

Hi, Danyel,

My suggestion is that you contact the college / university of your choice and have them help you access financial aide.  I have no idea what your income is, but you can always apply for a FAFSA loan (sometimes they give it to you straight up so you owe nothing in the end).  The guidance people in the universities have a lot of resources at their fingertips and since each state is different, I won't be much help on the specifics.

There are often special grants for those choosing a career in education, so search things like that.  Be VERY careful, though, of getting to sites that charge you for things that should be free.  FAFSA is one of them.  If they are charging you a fee, they are a scam.  This should be the correct site:

There are some courses you can do online but in my humble opinion, I can't say that I think they are all that great.  In order to learn to teach one needs to have people around with whom to interact.  If nothing else works, I guess it would be an option, but please exhaust all other avenues before turning to 100% online classes.  SOME classes can be taken online - ethics, history of, etc.  But methods classes and practice scenarios are better done live.

I hope this helps.  Don't hesitate to contact me further if you get some info and need more advice on that - or for something else.


Careers: Teaching

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Debba Robinson


I can answer questions about reading at all levels, English as a Second Language, elementary math, science and social studies as well as general education matters. Individuals interested in teaching in international schools can contact me for information on how to begin the process of looking for jobs overseas.


I have been teaching for 30 years with a MEd in Reading and Language Arts, a BA in Elementary Education. For 6 years I taught computer to grades K-8. I have taught in combined grades (K-2 and 2-3 splits)in the US and overseas. The bulk of my elementary experience is in second and third grades, although I've taught K, 1, 2, 3 and 5 as a self-contained experience. Twenty-two years of my experience teaching has been in international schools in Africa and Asia.

MEd. in Reading and Language Arts
BA in Elementary Education
Certified principal K-12. Currently the director of the American International School of Niamey, Niger.

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