If you can’t live a moment without thinking in Spanish, and dream about making the world a better place through bilingual education, you might want to consider being a Spanish teacher. No matter what level of student you best connect with, there are ample opportunities. If you love teaching little ones, want the banter of a high school crowd, or crave the adult crowd, teaching opportunities for qualified Spanish teachers are on the rise and generally pay pretty well.
Elementary School Teachers
Foreign language isn’t just for high school students anymore. Many schools are introducing Spanish and other languages in the elementary grades and have dedicated foreign language instruction. If you can’t imagine a better gig than teaching young tykes your favorite language, then this may be a great career choice. You'll need a bachelor’s degree in Spanish and a teaching certification for your state. The growth rate by 2020 is expected to be 17 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The salary varies depending on the area, your education and your experience, with a low end salary of $31,720, a median salary of $51, 660 and a high end of $76,490.
High School Teachers
Ah, high school – the place where many of us got our first taste of Spanish. If you loved your high school Spanish class and can’t imagine a better work environment than interacting with smart and sassy teenagers, this may be the place for you. You’ll need at least a bachelor’s degree in Spanish and a valid teaching credential for your state. The growth rate varies by area, with the highest expected area of growth in the southern and western U.S., and a median growth of 7 percent anticipated by the BLS. Salaries vary by area and your prior experience and education, but the median salary is $53,230 with the lowest salary of $35,020 and the highest of $83,230.
Want to help young college students shape their lives and, possibly, change the world? Many students start impressive careers in college, and you can help spark their love of lifelong learning and help guide their job paths. You’ll need at least a master’s degree in Spanish, but preferably a Ph.D. if you want to obtain a tenure-track position. The BLS expects a 17 percent growth in this job by 2020. Salaries vary widely depending on your area, your education and experience. Salary ranges from a $30,720 at the low end to $130,510 at the high end, with a median salary of $62,050.
If you want to teach in a low-stress, fun environment, this option may work well. Self-enrichment Spanish teachers usually teach students in the community who are pursing learning outside of the classroom. Often, these are conversational or beginning Spanish students. The BLS expects a 21 percent growth rate by 2020 with an average hourly salary of $17.47 per hour. Most self-enrichment teachers do it part-time, so if you are looking for a fun side job, consider this option.
Based in the Pacific Northwest, Arin Bodden started writing professionally in 2003. Her writing has been featured in "Northwest Boulevard" and "Mermaids." She received the Huston Medal in English in 2005. Bodden has a Master of Arts in English from Eastern Washington University. She currently teaches English composition and technical writing at the university level.