Hi folks, I just found this site. The forums look a bit dated, so I hope other male teachers (or teachers in training) are out there to share their experience.
David, I’d say that with your two degrees it appears that you do value education. You also said you value children. So that is two of the criteria for teaching down. Whether or not you have an aptitude or passion for teaching children you just won’t know until you try it out. I say you give it a go — what do you have to lose (a bit of time and money, perhaps, but that is fleeting anyway).
Quick background on myself. I am 45 and am switching careers to become a teacher myself. I am in a 2 year weekend program at Oregon State University (in the U.S.A). I am 1 year into it and have learned so much — not just about teaching, but also about myself. I was kinda where you are a year ago. I thought I wanted to teach. I’ve raised three kids of my own, and spent a lot of time volunteering in the classroom. I thought I would like to do this — but what if I was wrong? The part time program takes a bit longer, but it did two things for my transition:
1) It allowed me to keep my full time job, so I could continue to support my family, pay the mortgage, and pay the college tuition to get my MA in Education.
2) It allowed me to get classroom experience — to actually work in the classroom, teaching a bit, being around students and other teachers.
The 2nd item really convinced me that I am making the right choice. I absolutely loved being in the classroom last year. My second year starts next week. I was in a 7th grade class last year. This year I will be in a 4th grade class. This next spring is the cutoff date — I do a 12 week practicum full time, which means I have to quit my other job to complete this part of the program. Hopefully, by next fall, I’ll find a job as a 1st year teacher — at the age of 46!
I’ll be endorsed to teach elementary and middle school — which means grades 3 through 10 in Oregon. If I want to teach in K-2nd, I’d have to get my early childhood endorsement. I’d also need a separate endorsement to teach grades 11-12.
Good luck David