Today, our featured career is ‘Education Specialist’. When people think of working in the education sector, they often think of teaching. There are many specialisms in teaching, all of which present different challenges and awards. For example, you can teach early-years, primary, secondary, college or higher education. In higher education, teaching is often accompanied by research of your own too.
However, there are also many other roles in the education sector, such as creating activities for families, schools and the public at museums, visitor attractions and universities. These kinds of roles are broadly referred to as ‘Education Officers’. Alongside these roles, you can work in education as a private tutor, as well as supporting education programmes, for example as an education administrator, a consultant or in educational policy. The thing that links all of these careers is that you will spend your time reflecting on (and in many cases practising) the best ways to deliver information for the audience you are working with.
As an education specialist, you will often spend time learning about a topic, so that you are able to adapt this for your audience. For example, if you work in a university you might learn about an exciting new discovery that you will explain to a visiting school group, or in a museum you might learn about a new exhibit to make a family-friendly craft activity themed on this topic. Being creative is a key skill, as you will aim to find novel, fun ways to explain things. This is true inside the classroom too – finding new ways to engage your pupils while teaching them their curriculum is one of the major challenges of teaching!
Dr. Danielle Green
Role during interview: Co-Founder, Eudaimonde Education; Education and Democracy Networks Lead, Ditchley Foundation; Global Youth Ambassador, Theirworld
Undergraduate Degree: Philosophy and French BA, University of Oxford
Brief Biography: Dr Danielle Green was awarded her BA in Philosophy and French with First Class Honours at St John’s College, Oxford in 2019. She then completed an MA in Development Studies at the University of Sussex with Distinction. During her degree, Danielle Green contributed to Access and Outreach Programmes, including at St John’s College. She is the Co-Founder and Non-Executive Director of Eudaimonde, a personal and sustainable development education platform for primary school children, and also a Global Youth Ambassador for Theirworld. Having previously worked as an Education and Democracy Networks Co-Lead, Danielle Green was recently promoted to Climate and Sustainable Development Networks Lead for the Ditchley Foundation.
History Education Officer Challenge
For today’s activities, we are setting you a challenge work as a history Education Officer. Imagine you are working in a history museum, as an Education Officer. You have been asked to prepare an activity for primary school children, aged 8-10 years old (this could be a game, a puzzle, a challenge or anything else – maybe you will ask the children to do a role-play!). The activity must be themed on Genghis Khan, to accompany the museum’s new ‘Genghis Khan: rise of the Mongol Empire’ exhibit. Having an interactive activity for children means that more families will come to visit, and children will enjoy the exhibit (and learn more too!).
Use the activities below to learn all about Genghis Khan, and then develop your activity – we suggest using a blank document, or a piece of paper to make some notes on ideas you have as you go along, before developing your final idea. Things to think about while developing your activity are:
- What might children of this age already know (if anything)?
- What information will be new to them?
- Is the material appropriate for this age group?
- Is the language accessible? Too many long words or new definitions can be hard for young children to grasp.
- There is a lot of material! Try to focus on one or two key messages – which parts do you think are the most important to communicate to this age group?
- How could you make these messages into a fun activity? For example, museum activities often include crafts (such as making Viking helmets) or treasure hunts (you might imagine 5 things to look out for in the Museum exhibit and make a treasure trail).
Want to know more?
To find out more about working in the education sector (there are a wide variety of jobs, both inside and outside the classroom, such as becoming a Youth Worker, or an Education Officer in a Museum or University), take a look at the following explore-a-career pages:
- Oxford University Careers Service: Teaching in Schools
- National Careers Service
- PROSPECTS: teaching and education (many job profiles)
To explore other career options that might interest you, there are lots of tool available! We recommend starting by exploring job sectors and occupations on the following websites:
Talking to people who are currently doing a role you are interested in, organising some work experience where you can shadow someone doing this role, or reading first-hand accounts from people working in the area you are interested in can all help you find out more about a particular job!
To find out more about studying a subject at University, you can also talk to current St John’s students using Inspire Chat by clicking here!