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Top 10 things to include on a teacher's resume

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Question:
Hello Guidance Counselor,

I need help! I am so excited to become a teacher and will soon be graduating with a bachelor's degree in K-12 education. My problem is I have no idea how to create a professional resume. I really want to make mine stand out because I know there is fierce competition out there. Everyone I talk to gives me different opinions about what to put in my resume. Do you have any tips for me? Thanks! Wendy

Answer:
Dear Wendy,

This is a great question and one that definitely comes up a lot especially from college students about to graduate. As you prepare to join the professional work force for the first time, you do want to make sure that you are making a great impression on every single person who has your resume in hand. Since your resume is the number one way that a potential employer gets to know you, it is important that you create one that really showcases your talents, experiences and education.

You will find that there are conflicting opinions on what should go on a resume and some things are really a matter of personal preference. For example, some people will tell you to include your references on your resume, while others will say that if an employer would like to check your references, they will ask you for them. I would not stress over these kinds of details, instead do what you are comfortable with or what feels right to you. The one thing that is not negotiable is to be sure your resume is edited to perfection. Have several eyes look it over for you before you send it out. You may even consider having it professionally edited. Nothing says carelessness like a spelling error on a teacher's resume. Beyond that, here are 10 suggestions of categories to include to help you build an amazing resume and land teaching jobs.

Awards--This category may not be relevant to everyone, but it is important to include any awards you have received if that is the case. This could be academic or professional, and can go as far back as high school, if necessary.

Contact Information--Of course this one should go without saying, but be sure you include your mailing address, an email address and a phone number.

Education--Another given. Your education section, however, should not only include the degree you've earned, but also any areas of focus, concentrations or minors from college.

Philosophy of education--Your philosophy of education is a brief statement that gives an overview of your beliefs about education. Keep it short and sweet: no more than 2 sentences.

Professional development--In this section, you want to include any workshops, seminars or focused training sessions that you have been a part of outside of your college teaching courses. List the title of the event and the year you attended.

Professional organizations--If you are not a member of a professional teaching organization yet, enroll now. The National Education Organization is a great one to join and membership is a nice resume booster.

References--And so the debate continues. I say add your references. Why not have them ready for a school administrator to use if they are interested in you? They may appreciate having the information at their fingertips.

Teaching jobs or related experience--If you have not yet held a teaching position, be sure you add your student teaching experience under this heading. Any other experience working with children can be documented here including things like camp counselor, summer nanny work or classroom volunteer.

Teaching courses--If your professional experience in the field or experience working with children is thin, go ahead and add teaching courses you found particularly important especially if the courses involved field work like observing classrooms or shadowing teachers.

Teaching license--Include which state your certification is from, what type of teaching license you have earned and the date obtained.

Good luck building your teacher's resume!

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