How to Become a Bilingual Teachers in Texas

Become a Certified Bilingual Teacher Now

Bilingual Teachers are in High Demand

If you speak two or more languages and enjoy helping young people learn, you should consider a career as a bilingual teacher. Texas has seen a 50% increase in the need for bilingual teachers, with only 20% of that need being met. Texas Teachers specializes in helping college graduates become bilingual teachers. All you need is a bachelor’s degree with a 2.5 GPA or higher to get started.

Students across the state are waiting for someone like you to answer the call and become a bilingual teacher. Are you ready to make a difference?

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Reasons to Become a Bilingual Teacher

In the United States, it’s estimate that more than a quarter of students are immigrants or the children of immigrants. In 2018, 67.3 million U.S. residents spoke a language other than English at their home. This statistic alone helps to emphasize the importance behind the reasons to become a bilingual teacher. The influx of immigrants into the United States hasn’t gone unnoticed, wrestling in investments in bilingual education programs. 

Having bilingual teachers in the classroom not only helps students feel more comfortable and at ease, but it also helps to integrate them more easily and efficiently into the school system. While they may be learning in their native language, they will be focusing on subjects that help to develop and strengthen their English skills. This means that those who are learning English are able to continue education in other subject areas without running into a learning roadblock due to the lack of literacy and background knowledge.

What Does a Bilingual Teacher Do? 

Bilingual teachers are in charge teaching students in a foreign language. This means that they teach in another language outside of English. These languages could be Spanish, German, American Sign Language, and many more. Bilingual teachers can work over a variety of grades, including, kindergarten, elementary school, middle school, and high school. Bilingual education is very similar to a regular education. The responsibilities of a bilingual teacher consists of the following: 

  • Curriculum Planning – Keeping the goals of students and parents in mind, it’s important you plan a curriculum that will both challenge and allow students to grow. 
  • Creating Culturally Inclusive Classrooms – Teaching children about the importance of diversity and differences between one another is extremely important and crucial to the learning process. 
  • Delivering Instruction – As a teacher, students look to you for instruction on what to do each day. 
  • Leading Class Activities – As stated before, students look up to teachers. As a leader in the classroom, it’s important to enure everyone understands and can participate in class activities. 
  • Grading Assignments – Just like any other teacher, bilingual teachers will assign and grade the various work of students. 

Bilingual Teacher Salaries & Career Information

In general, bilingual teachers earn the same amount in pay as other teachers. The median annual wage for high school teachers is around $61,820 , and for kindergarten and elementary school teachers it’s around $60,900. Additionally, the employment of high school teachers is projected to grow 8 percent from 2020 to 2030 and 7 percent for elementary and kindergarten teachers. Teachers in bilingual education are also likely to grow in demand because of the influx of non-English-speaking students in K-12 schools. As you complete you bilingual teacher certification and look to apply for jobs, there are a variety of job titles you should be aware of. For example, bilingual educator, English Language Learner (ELL) teacher, English-as-a-Second Language (ESL) Teacher, teacher of English as a Second Language (TESOL), and teacher of Foreign Languages (TEFL). These are all titles that bilingual teachers may take when accepting a job.

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Steps to Becoming a Bilingual Teacher

The Texas Teachers program is approved by the state of Texas to certify teachers in all bilingual areas. All you need is a bachelor’s degree with a 2.5 GPA to get started. We will need a completed application and official transcripts to admit you into the program.

Step 1: Training
After submitting an application and enrolling in our program, you will complete engaging online training and teacher observations to prepare you for the classroom..

Step 2: Testing
As required by the Texas Education Agency (TEA), you will take and pass three exams to become eligible to teach in a bilingual classroom. The TExES exams are administered by Pearson.

Bilingual Target Language Proficiency Test (TExES test 190)
Bilingual Supplemental (TExEs test 164)
Core Subjects Grades EC-6 (TExES test 291) OR Core Subjects Grades 4-8 (TExES test 211)

In order to help our teacher candidates succeed, we have created test prep modules designed specifically for the Bilingual Target Language Proficiency Test (BTLPT) and the Core Subjects exams. After you apply, your Program Advisor will be in contact with the test preparation details and any additional resources.

Step 3: Teaching
You will teach for one year, with full pay and full benefits, under the guidance of a Field Supervisor. Your Field Supervisor is an experienced educator, assigned to you by Texas Teachers to observe you in the classroom and provide support throughout this first year teaching.

Upon successful completion of your internship year and program requirements, you will become a fully certified bilingual teacher.

There’s never been a better time to become a bilingual teacher. Your skills are in high demand, and students need your help. Texas Teachers can help you get there.

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The Role of the Bilingual Teacher

In response to the growing bilingual population, bilingual teachers have an increasingly valuable role in the Texas education system. Children of recent immigrants to the US may speak a language other than English at home and need to learn how to speak English alongside their other subjects in school. As a bilingual teacher of English Language Learners (ELLs), you will make sure your students learn the subject matter while helping them become fluent in English.

Responsibilities of the Bilingual teacher

  • Teaching a curriculum provided by the school
  • Assigning and grading homework
  • Creating and grading tests and quizzes
  • Engaging your class in discussions, relevant activities, and demonstrations

Bilingual teachers can expect to work school days: mornings and afternoons five days a week, nine to ten months of the year. You’ll enjoy an optimal work-life balance with extended winter, spring, and summer vacations.

Qualities of a good Bilingual teacher

  • Fluent in English and another language
  • Sensitive to the needs of diverse groups
  • Open and approachable
  • Patient and resourceful
  • Positive, motivational attitude
  • Well-organized
  • Good time management skills
  • Qualified with a bachelor’s degree with a GPA of 2.5 or higher

Required Skills for Bilingual Teachers

Below is a list of skills that are required for those individuals working to obtain their bilingual teacher certification. 

  • Language fluency in English and another language – the goal of bilingual teachers is to be able to teach in another language in addition to English. Having fluency in another language allows students to continue learning other subject matter without falling behind due to lack of literacy and English knowledge. 
  • Organizational skills – being organized is key to every teacher’s journey. This is because you will have a variety of assignments to keep track of and the need to keep up with student projects and progress. 
  • Resourcefulness – many students that you are teaching may get discouraged or frustrated because they may be having difficulty learning English. You must be able to overcome these difficult moments and turn them into a a positive learning experience. 
  • Excellent communication skills – as a bilingual teacher, you will need to have clear communication skills due to having to communicate in two languages depending on the competency of the students you are teaching. 
  • Cultural sensitivity – while teaching in a bilingual classroom, it’s important to be sensitive to various culture differences. Students who are learning English will likely come from a slightly different background and it’s important to be aware of that. 
  • Patience – having patience with students is key to not making them feel discouraged. Everyone learns at different speeds and you may have students from all different levels in your classrooms. 
  • Persistence – as stated before, many students may be faced with frustration while being taught in a bilingual classroom. You must be persistent with what you are teaching them and help them overcome these difficult moments. 

English as a Second Language (ESL) VS Bilingual

ESL teachers are not required to speak a second language but Bilingual teachers are required. Many school districts are in need of teachers who are able to host students in their classrooms who are English Language Learners (ELLs) or Bilingual. In an (ESL) classroom, the majority of students would speak English well, while a few may need extra help. Some school districts are beginning to require the ESL Supplemental (TExES test 154) to be passed in addition to a content exam (at any level) as a prerequisite to employment. It is definitely helpful to have this exam passed to increase your marketability to districts when it comes time to get hired.

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