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5 Steps to Become a History Teacher

February 19, 2023 · 4 min read

A history teacher is an educator who specializes in teaching the study of the past. History teachers typically work in secondary schools (middle schools and high schools), teaching students about important events, people, and developments from history. Their aim is to help students understand the context and significance of these events and to develop critical thinking skills that will allow them to analyze and interpret historical events.

History teachers may teach a variety of topics, including world history, U.S. history, and specialized topics such as ancient civilizations or the history of a specific region or time period. They use a variety of instructional methods, such as lectures, discussions, and group work, to engage students and help them understand the material.

The role of a history teacher goes beyond simply imparting knowledge of the past. They also help students develop skills such as research, analysis, and communication that will be useful to them throughout their lives. By encouraging students to think critically about history, history teachers play an important role in helping students understand the world around them and their place in it.


Becoming a history teacher typically requires the following steps:

  1. Obtain a bachelor's degree in history or a related field: Most states require history teachers to have at least a bachelor's degree in history or a related field, such as social studies or education.
  2. Complete a teacher preparation program: Most states also require teachers to complete a teacher preparation program, which provides training in instructional methods and curriculum design.
  3. Pass state certification exams: In order to become certified to teach history, you will need to pass state certification exams, which test your knowledge of history and your teaching skills.
  4. Gain teaching experience: Some states also require teachers to have a certain amount of teaching experience, either as a student teacher or as a licensed teacher.
  5. Keep your certification current: Many states require teachers to complete continuing education courses in order to maintain their certification.

It's important to check the specific requirements in your state, as they can vary. You can typically find information about these requirements on your state's Department of Education website.


What are the responsibilities of a History Teacher?

The duties of a history teacher typically include the following:

  1. Planning and delivering engaging lessons: History teachers are responsible for planning lessons that are both informative and engaging for students. This includes selecting appropriate materials, such as primary sources, textbooks, and multimedia resources, and using a variety of teaching methods, such as lectures, discussions, and hands-on activities.
  2. Assessing student learning: History teachers assess student learning through a variety of methods, such as exams, essays, and oral presentations. They use this information to evaluate student progress and to guide future instruction.
  3. Grading and reporting student progress: History teachers are responsible for grading student work and communicating this information to students and their families through regular progress reports.
  4. Advising and supporting students: History teachers often serve as advisors to students, providing guidance and support as they navigate their academic and personal lives.
  5. Collaborating with colleagues: History teachers often collaborate with other teachers, both within and outside of their own department, to plan lessons, share resources, and coordinate assessments.
  6. Participating in professional development: History teachers are expected to participate in professional development activities to stay up-to-date with best practices in teaching and to improve their own skills.
  7. Engaging with the broader community: History teachers may also participate in activities that engage the wider community, such as coordinating field trips, hosting guest speakers, and organizing events that showcase student work.

These are some of the common duties of a history teacher. However, the specific responsibilities may vary depending on the school, the grade level, and the individual teacher's role.

by Olena Kukhtyk

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