What is a Family Consumer Science Teacher?
A Family Consumer Science teacher provides education in the areas of family financial management, home storage, and use, nutrition, clothing and textiles, child development, health care for children and adults/elderly, homemaking skills.
What is Family Consumer Science?
The National Association of Family & Consumer Sciences defines family consumer science as "the integration of academic disciplines with applied fields that focus on enhancing the well being of individuals across the life span in multiple contexts through the acquisition of knowledge about human behavior in relationships within the self, family, work settings, community, and institutions."
Family consumer science is also referred to as FCS. Children are given classwork to complete at certain points throughout their school day(s). Some examples include math that accompanies cooking, nutrition or home economics. In addition to regular school work, students complete projects in which they receive a grade, such as sewing a pillow from scratch from measurements and fabric specifications.
What Does a Family Consumer Science Teacher Do?
The family consumer science teacher provides educational opportunities from pre-school through adult to help students become well-rounded, productive citizens.
In elementary school, a family consumer science teacher can offer child development knowledge and activities to help young children grow and learn in the classroom environment. In addition, the FCST will also work with students on projects that require applying skills learned at home or in the community to what is being learned in school.
In middle school, a family consumer science teacher can teach homemaking skills such as cooking, baking, and sewing to prepare students for their future homes. Along with this education comes child care responsibilities now that those middle schoolers have been given more independence from their parents/guardians. The student now watches over younger children while the parent/guardian is at work and looks after their own young siblings. The FCST teaches skills and responsibilities that will help students care for others.
In high school, a family consumer science teacher can offer courses in nutrition, money management, clothing choices and types (including how to properly store them), interior decorating, home construction and renovation (for example: repairing things such as leaking roofs or broken windows). Skills are practiced through lessons, activities with other teachers in the same discipline, projects completed by students under the supervision of parents/guardians or guardians living in homes built by students. Students may even have the opportunity to go on field trips where they practice their newly acquired in an actual setting instead of just learning about it in the classroom.
Family Consumer Science Teacher Responsibilities:
A family consumer science teacher typically spends a lot of time outside the school environment as well as inside. This typically includes hours spent at home doing homework or projects that can be due during the class time and after, but also hours to meet with other FCSTs and parents/guardians about students' progress and working together to encourage and motivate their students to better understand and complete their assignments. Along with finding ways to help children who may struggle in any particular area, a family consumer science teacher has many responsibilities such as grading, lesson planning (and creating homework), testing (tests are different from quizzes), and providing appropriate consequences when needed.
So, the list of things that the family consumer science teacher does is not limited to just teaching in the classroom or at home. They are required to do a lot of extra things to help each student understand the lessons and complete appropriate projects that may relate back to their learning but also allow students time after school hours to get together with other classmates for group projects.
It takes dedication, patience, creativity, and flexibility by both students and parents/guardians for all students' success. The FCST must be able to work closely with parents/guardians so they understand what their child has learned throughout the semester (or year) and how they can help them further improve their skills. This typically requires working outside of traditional school hours (even into early morning), long days at school, and even extra hours on weekends.
All of these responsibilities make family consumer science teacher one of the most rewarding but also taxing jobs a person could fill. It takes many years to become an FCST - typically a bachelor's degree in teaching, child development, or a related field, a background check, and CPR/First Aid certification are required before earning a teacher's license from their state. However, once all of those requirements have been met, becoming an FCST is usually more about dedication than the required credentials. Once someone has earned their teacher's license they can teach grades K-12 as long as they choose family consumer sciences as their main focus of learning.
What Education Do You Need To Be A Family Consumer Science Teacher?
A family consumer science teacher typically requires a bachelor's degree and, depending on state requirements, may need to be at least 21 years old. Classes of study will include child development (the different stages of human growth and how to appropriately teach each stage), home economics (how to run a household and how to make/repair things such as clothing, furniture, etc.), nutrition (understanding of which foods help people grow and stay healthy) and psychology (how children learn).
Although the basics may seem simple for this type of instructor, there is more to becoming an FCST than just learning the skills themselves. It takes someone who wants to help students understand not just what they're doing but why it will benefit their future career - whether that be at home or in a professional workplace.
Specialization In Family Consumer Science Teacher
When choosing a family consumer science teacher to hire, most schools and other organizations will look for someone with both the appropriate education and experience. Some of this is definitely needed within the state requirements but also depends on what students will learn in that classroom. It's a good idea to ask any family consumer science teacher you're considering hiring about their specialization. For example, some FCSTs may prefer to teach grades K-8 while others only want to work with high school seniors preparing for college or even professionals already working in their industry.
Anywhere from middle school through the undergraduate program, including business courses such as economics, marketing, and management is helpful when teaching these types of students. Other classes that can help FCSTs prepare for their career is history (how families have been structured, determined, and changed over time) and current events (what's going on in the world today).
What Are Some Characteristics of a Family Consumer Science Teacher?
Although it is not necessary to have any special education or certification to teach family consumer science, it can help to have courses in child development, adolescence & adulthood studies, social sciences, economics and business. A family consumer science teacher should also be patient and eager to work with others. They should enjoy helping students learn responsibility and new skills while having fun at the same time!
How can I become a Family Consumer Science Teacher?
Most family consumer science teachers have a bachelor's degree with an emphasis in family and consumer sciences OR people who wish to further their education may choose to obtain a Master of Education degree in Family and Consumer Sciences. There are also opportunities for those who have previous experience working with children to assist teachers by teaching after-school programs for elementary students or summer courses at community centers or other locations.
The American Association of Family & Consumer Sciences offers internships that allow students interested in becoming educators the opportunity to work with current family consumer science teachers.
What are the typical hours of an FCS teacher?
Most school districts that hire family consumer science teachers require 6-8 contact hours per week, which is typically after school until 5:00 pm or later (depending on the specific district).
Some schools provide additional compensation for offering instruction at different times. For example, some teachers offer Saturday courses in order to earn extra money by working longer hours during the week. Most families do not need childcare providers on Saturdays; therefore, these individuals can increase their income while using their teaching skills and available time outside of regular school hours.
It is possible for weekend classes to take place before noon, but most students who attend either cannot miss school or need to be at home to complete homework that was assigned during their regularly scheduled classes.
15 Essential Family Consumer Science Teacher Skills for Your Resume and Career
- Knowledge of different types of family structures: single, two-parent families and many different types of blended families.
- Knowledge of how technology has changed the way we plan our homes and organize our finances: such as computers for planning meal menus, completing school projects, and managing house bills.
- Ability to teach responsibility in a manner that students enjoy learning: this includes time management skills so extra help is available whenever needed.
- Understanding of the importance of teamwork in every type of situation: whether it's working with family members or other teachers within a company/school environment.
- The ability to work well under pressure: there will be deadlines to meet when teaching family consumer science!
- An increased level of patience; teaching people new things takes time and patience is required in order to complete projects and assignments correctly.
- Knowledge of the importance of proper nutrition: how it affects our bodies and minds, as well as what we should be consuming each day to stay healthy and active.
- Understanding of how financial decisions affect our budgets: such as when buying food, home items, or school supplies; most families have a budget that they need to follow for these types of things.
- Ability to teach students about budgeting skills that are valuable during college years! "10 Tips For Student Success During The College Years" offers some great tips on teaching essential money management skills to high school students who are heading off to college soon!
- An understanding of ways students can make healthier food choices: such as having a balanced meal and getting plenty of fruits and vegetables each day.
- Knowledge of various website services that can keep students organized: including email, document sharing, and cloud storage.
- Ability to teach the importance of time management to students during an academic year!
- Awareness of ways students can save money on back-to-school shopping: such as waiting for stores to hold sales or looking out for coupons in local newspapers and online promotional emails from retailers!
- Knowing all the best places parents can shop for school supplies so families never have to spend too much money on these items! "School Supplies You Can Find At Discounted Prices" offers tips on finding hardware stores and dollar stores for such items as notebooks, binders, and pens.
- The ability to teach students about money management: how much they should be saving and spending each month, which basics of budgeting to start with, and where to find free financial advice! "8 Ways Students Can Improve Their Money Management Skills" offers ideas on teaching high school students the value of money in different situations!
By having these skills in your career arsenal, you will be able to successfully complete projects without breaking the bank when it comes time to pay for supplies or other expenses!
What is the average pay for a Family Consumer Science Teacher?
The average annual salary for family consumer science teachers in 2014 was $53,970.
While this average is based upon the most recent data available, it does not account for geographic location or other variables which can affect pay rates. For instance, family consumer science teachers who work at affluent private schools may receive higher salaries than those working in public school systems. Additionally, experience and added responsibilities (such as coaching a sports team) can also impact compensation amounts.
Family Consumer Science teachers earn hourly wages that are based on their level of education and previous teaching experience while continuing education can also increase income levels.
Preparing lesson plans, communicating with parents, and helping to resolve student issues are some of the responsibilities associated with family consumer science teachers. These professionals must remain current on trends in education (such as learning styles) and hold advanced education degrees in order to be competitive when applying for positions at private schools or other educational institutions.
Those who choose to pursue management positions in higher-paying school districts may need additional certifications/licenses that are specific to their location, such as a Principal License issued by the state department of education.