What do you want to DO when you grow up?

Format
David McKillop

Students will use online tools and job search engines to explore career possibilities and the job market.

Summary

  • Students will use online tools to explore career possibilities based on their interests, abilities, and skills
  • Students will use online job search engines to explore the job market for potential careers
Specific Expectations for Ontario

SCH3U:
A2.1 identify and describe a variety of careers related to the fields of science under study (e.g., pharmacist, forensic scientist, chemical engineer, food scientist, environmental chemist, occupational health and safety officer, water quality analyst, atmospheric scientist) and the education and training necessary for these careers.

Setting the Stage

Analysts predict that due to current market trends, individuals are expected to hold the same job for less time in the years ahead. As a result, people are potentially going to change careers 15 or more times over their working life! Often, students are asked “What do you want to be when you grow up?” However, with the rapid growth of technology, and the changes this has caused to the workplace, what a student wants to be might not be there when they are ready. As a result, it is better to ask “What do you want to do when you grow up?” 

While there is pressure on students to “know” what they are going to do when they graduate, the reality is that many students have no idea what they want to do. Some students seem very certain about what they will do and others are somewhere in between. Often future career plans are the result of parent/teacher expectations/recommendations. Sometimes it is due to a limited knowledge of the variety of careers available. Regardless of where students fall on this spectrum, this activity is an opportunity to explore potential career plans and realize other options that could be available. 

Materials & Preparation

  • Chart paper or white boards and markers **Alternatively, teachers may choose to use an online collaboration whiteboard such as miro, conceptboard or Mindmeister
  • Computers or tablets with internet access (for students)
  • Download the What do you want to DO when you grow up? Assignment Reproducible (1 per student) [Google doc] [PDF] - provide as a paper or e-copy

What To Do

  • This lesson is divided into four parts. Each part is detailed in the What do you want to DO when you grow up? Assignment Reproducible.
  • Depending on how this assignment is used, teachers may choose to provide an overview of the entire task or scaffold it by presenting it “piece-by-piece.” While each of the four parts are independent of the others, PART C does rely on the responses collected from parts A and B.

Part A

  • This first part is intended to activate prior knowledge and to introduce the topic of preparing and planning for future careers. 
  • Teachers could begin by having students work in pairs or small groups to discuss the question: “What do you want to do when you graduate?”
  • Teachers could ask students to reflect on the career paths they are considering and to consider why they have an interest in this particular career(s). They should consider personal experience, peer pressure, parental influence, etc. Students could record ideas to prepare to present them to peers in small groups or to the entire class.
  • At the end of the small-group discussion, students could reconvene as a class and share some ideas. Alternatively, if students recorded their ideas on chart paper, there could be a gallery walk to have students observe comments from other groups. 
  • A more formal write-up for Part A could be completed in class and used as an Exit Slip for the lesson or could be completed at home. If students require a higher-level of scaffolding, then submitting sections one-at-a-time may be beneficial.

Part B

  • For PART B students will begin by completing some of the Career Planning Quizzes offered by the Government of Canada. 
  • Next, students will explore career opportunities based on how they answer the “quiz” questions. Teachers should encourage students to have an open mind and to explore career options. This activity does not require students to discard their “chosen” career path. It could provide them with additional options based on individual responses and provide a “plan b” option should their first choice not work out.

Part C

Part D

  • Part D provides students with opportunities to reflect on and consolidate their learning. 
  • Students should work on this individually. Teachers could remind students that there are no “correct” answers here. This is the opportunity for students to present their point of view and explain why they have the opinions that they do by presenting specific ideas and demonstrating the connections they have made.

Let’s Talk Science appreciates the work and contributions of David McKillop from Markville Secondary School, York Region District School Board in the development of this lesson

Details

Assessment

  • Teachers could give feedback to students regarding their engagement and collaboration skills.
  • Teachers could assess students on their ability to support an opinion.
  • Teachers could use the responses from this lesson to further explore post-secondary options for students and to make connections between science skills and future employment opportunities.

Assessment

  • Teachers could give feedback to students regarding their engagement and collaboration skills.
  • Teachers could assess students on their ability to support an opinion.
  • Teachers could use the responses from this lesson to further explore post-secondary options for students and to make connections between science skills and future employment opportunities.

Downloads

What do you want to DO when you grow up? Assignment [Google doc] [PDF]

Downloads

What do you want to DO when you grow up? Assignment [Google doc] [PDF]