Career Exploration for Students Middle Grades
Source: Adapted from National Career Development Association
- Create a career Scavenger Hunt.
- Ask students to draw a family career tree.
- Review a newspaper and identify 10 careers without using the classified job ads.
- Have students write a description of their ideal job.
- Make or purchase career posters to hang in the classrooms or hallways.
- Have a career hat day. Students wear the hat of a specific career field and are ready to describe that career if asked.
- Cut out career-related words from newspapers or magazines and discuss them.
- Conduct a what do you wear to work activity to explore clothes, uniforms and equipment required for different careers.
- Have available various career magazines, books and articles for students to review.
- Use the comics to identify 10 different career areas.
- Create a display of tools for a variety of careers.
- Make a collage of pictures of things the student is interested in.
- Highlight a different pathway and career each week following the guidelines of Career Clusters.
- Schedule Lunch and Learn sessions. Invite speakers in during lunch to talk with students about their career field.
- Make a Career Pathway Bulletin Board using enlarged copies of the Career Pathway icons (Career Clusters) and place them on the board. Talk about a career each day and have students guess which pathway it belongs to.
- Introduce students to web-based career resources. Caution students these are only tools to help them organize information. The final decision about what career to choose is up to them.
- Have students watch Career Pathways Advertisements created by high school students.
- Conduct a Labor Market Scavenger Hunt, looking for anything that might indicate a change in employment, such as help wanted signs, store closing, store opening, etc.
- Create a career corner in the classroom or school media center.
- Assist with Career Day by either speaking or finding volunteers from the community who will participate.
- Talk to students about your career path.
- During field trips, have students keep a list of jobs they notice people doing.
- Have students choose one career area they are interested in and then research at least three other related career areas.
- Watch career focused presentations, followed by discussion.
- When students talk about the latest blockbuster movie, ask them to watch the credits at the end. What jobs are listed? Which ones sound interesting?
- Create career posters and poems and enter the NCDA Poster and Poem Contest. www.ncda.org.
- Visit college campuses.
- Discuss the future.