A Career as a High School Spanish Teacher

Ashley Braun

Career Overview

High school teachers use methods of lecture and presentation to teach specific subjects to 13-18 year olds.  

High school teachers also take attendance, keep track of textbooks and other supplies, and establish classroom rules.  They create lesson plans to teach according to the curriculum, assign and grade homework, create and grade students' tests, and create progress reports.

High school teachers might also supervise student activities, lunch breaks, dances, sports events, or other activities.

High school teachers participate in faculty meetings to discuss issues with the administrators.  They might also attend teaching conferences to share and learn new ideas and teaching methods.

High school teachers might also give students advice, meet with students, parents, or administrators, and advise students on which courses to take.

Career Skills and Interests

High school teachers must be able to:

  • Effectively communicate with their students by speaking, listening, and reading
  • Notice problems and use their problem solving skills to fix them
  • Use math skills to help solve problems
  • Manage themselves and their time
  • Multitask
  • Motivate others
  • Use several methods of teaching
  • Work with others and find ways to help them
  • Perceive and visualize patterns in learning

Career Working Conditions

  • Teachers often work indoors with a large numbers of students.
  • They have a high level of social interaction and must communicate with others on a daily basis.
  • Teachers must work accurately and make decisions without supervision.
  • They work independently while planning lessons and activities and often put in extra time outside of school to finish.
  • Teachers do repetitive activities such as planing lessons and grading assignments.

Career Wages and Outlook

High school teachers are paid by the year.  They earn more money for higher education or more years of teaching.  The average salary of high school teachers is between $52,460 and $57,000 per year.

Teachers who coach sports or supervise other activities may be paid more.

There are very high annual openings for high school teachers, but the ten year growth is more slowly than average.

Career Related Occupations

Some similar careers to high school teaching are:

  • Adult and Vocational Education Teachers
  • Athletic Trainers
  • Coaches and Scouts
  • Education Administrators
  • Employee Training Specialists
  • Historians
  • Instructional Coordinators
  • Middle School Teachers
  • Occupational Therapists
  • School Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Special Education Teachers
  • Teacher Aides
  • University and College Teachers

Program of Study - Secondary Education and Teaching

Program Overview

Secondary education and teaching programs teach people how to teach specific subjects or a broad set of courses. They also learn to plan lessons and projects that motivate and challenge students.

Program Admission

You can prepare for this program by completing four years of English, three years of math, three years of social studies, and two years of science in high school.  Some colleges also require two years of a foreign language.

To be admitted into this program, students usually need to complete Praxis I, a personal interview, a personal statement, and the required general education and core courses.

Some high school courses that might help to prepare you for this program are:

  • Child Development and Parenting
  • Community Service
  • Education Methodology
  • General Computer Applications
  • Psychology
  • School Governance
  • Sociology
  • Teacher Aide
  • Teacher Assisting

Program Typical Coursework

The Education program typically includes courses such as:

  • Adolescent Development in Social Contexts
  • Curriculum Development
  • Design of Learning Environments
  • Early and Middle Childhood Development and Learning
  • Educating Exceptional Children
  • Educational Psychology
  • Foundations of Education
  • Instructional Media and Technology
  • Instructional Methodologies
  • Junior High and Middle School Curriculum
  • Literacy in the Secondary School
  • Secondary School Curriculum
  • Social Contexts of Education
  • Teaching, Engaging, and Assessing
  • The Teacher and Secondary School Organization

The specific courses in this program depend on the subject a student is planning on teaching, but all programs involve the creation of a teaching portfolio, pre-practicum fieldwork, and student-teaching practicum.

Related Programs

  • Curriculum and Instruction
  • Education
  • Education of the Gifted
  • Education, General
  • Middle School Education and Teaching
  • Multilingual and Multicultural Education
  • Special Education
  • Teacher Assisting
  • Teaching English as a Second Language
  • Urban Education

Schools That Offer My Program of Study

  • Bemidji State University
  • Minnesota State University, Mankato
  • Minnesota State University, Moorhead
  • St. Cloud State University
  • Winona State University

College Choice

Minnesota State University, Mankato

College Info.

Size and Location:

  • Mankato, MN - population of 55,000
  • Student Population of 15,441

Admission Requirements:

  • High school diploma or GED
  • 4 years of English, 3 years of social science, 3 years of science, 3 years of math, 2 years of foreign language, 1 year of world culture or arts, and 1 year of history.

College Expenses:

  • Tuition and Fees - $7,574
  • Books and Supplies - $500-$900
  • Other Required Expenses: $2,052
  • Room and Board - $7,368
  • Total - $17,494-$17,894

Financial Aid:

  • Submit the FAFSA/SAR forms
  • Available Scholarships:

          - MSU College and Department Scholarships

          - Alliss, Dempsey and University Scholarships

          - New and Transfer Student Scholarships

          - Private Scholarships


  • Housing Options - Crawford, McElroy, Julia A. Sears, Margaret R. Preska, Stadium Heights Apartments
  • Room Types - basic double, renovated double, semi-suite, apartment

Meal Plans:

  • Unlimited meals with 100 flex dollars

          -  Fall: $1,246

          - Spring: $1,307

  • 14 meals per week with 200 flex dollars

          - Fall: $1,303

          - Spring: $1,360

  • 160 meals per semester with 25 flex dollars

          - Fall: $1,179

          - Spring: $1,179


  • Choral Groups
  • Drama or Theater Groups
  • Newspaper
  • Radio Station
  • Student Government


  • Alpha Chi Omega, Alpha Sigma Alpha, Delta Chi, Fraternal Values Society, Gamma Phi Beta, Gamma Sigma Alpha, Lambda Chi Alpha, Order of Omega, Panhellenic Council, Phi Delta Theta, Phi Kappa Psi, Phi Kappa Theta Colony, Sigma Chi, Sigma Nu, Sigma Sigma Sigma, Tau Kappa Epsilon


  • Archery, Baseball, Basketball, Cheerleading, Cross-Country Running, Dodgeball, Fencing, Football, Golf, Ice Hockey, Kickball, Lacrosse, Racquetball, Rock Climbing, Rugby, Sailing, Skiing, Soccer, Softball, Swimming

Informational Interview

  • March 5th with Sara Lynch
  • In my interview, I learned about what it takes to be passionate about your career, the schooling it takes, what kind of work it involves, and how to gain experience before going into teaching. I also learned that teaching can make you really love your job and it can help you become better at understanding kids, including your own.
  • I really liked the work environment because it was comfortable and inviting and was also a setting that I could see myself working in.  I enjoyed the work that she does and could see myself doing this as a career. I also liked having a chance to talk to someone in this field and figuring out if it really is the right choice for me.
  • Some advice that I received: Try out the career in college and see if you like it, you can always change your mind if you don't. It's a great idea to volunteer in many different school before you have your own classroom because you can get many different experiences and advice from a variety of people.  You will definitely know if teaching is the right choice.

Plans to Reach My Goal

To prepare for a career as a high school Spanish teacher I could:

  • Build up my career network to help me find a job sooner
  • Interview people who already work in this occupation to get a better idea of the career
  • Student teach in various classrooms to gain experience
  • Job shadow people who already work in this occupation to get a better idea of what this career consists of
  • Get a part time job working at a daycare or early childhood program to gain experience working with kids
  • Volunteer to tutor students to get experience teaching others

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