Field trips. Field trips are another way for your ow can I Help my child to see workers in many different careers. Before Child Experience your child goes on a school field trip, ask him or her to watch for different types of workers and careers Careers? while on the field trip. Then discuss those careers with your child afterwards. You may also arrange a While your child is in middle and high school, he field trip, just for you and your child, to a business or or she can participate in many career exploration organization that employs people in your child's activities. These activities may include: chosen career. Informational interviewing. Encourage your child to call people who work in his or her Remember that career choice is a personal decision. Do not try to steer your child to a particular career Help Your Child Make Career chosen career. Your child should let each person know the purpose of the call and determine how because you think it is something you might like. much time the individual has to talk. Important Decisions questions to ask include: Your child may change his or her career interest as a result of increased exposure to careers. Continue to · What daily activities do you do on your job? encourage your child as career choices change - the · How did you decide to choose this career? more informed he or she is about careers, the better · What kind of training did you need to enter this career? his or her career decision will be. A parent's guide to Career Decision-Making · What do you like most about your work? for Middle School and High School-Aged · What do you like least about your work? Students. . . For more information: Career fairs. Take every opportunity to attend career fairs with your child so he or she has the The following resources provide you and your child chance to learn more about various careers. with important information regarding career decision- Career fairs are often offered in high schools, making: local colleges or by the local chamber of commerce. U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Outlook Job shadow experiences. The more your child Handbook. Find it at your local library or online at: sees people in the work environment, the more http://www.bls.gov/oco/home.htm. informed he or she will be about possible careers. Check to see if programs such as "Take your Your state’s Career Resource Network Office will Child to Work Day" exist in your community. have career information and more information about the career decision-making process. To find your Internships and work-based learning. These state's Career Resource Network Office, go to: programs sometimes allow your child to gain http://www.acrnetwork.org and click on "Network." high school credit while exploring his or her career interest area. Internships and work-based The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational learning may be paid or unpaid experiences. Information Network (O*Net) can be found online at: Volunteer work. Encourage your child to http://online.onetcenter.org/ and click on "Skills volunteer for a business or organization that Search." provides jobs in his or her career interest area. America's Career InfoNet, created by a federal/state Vocational classes. If your child's high school partnership coordinated by the U.S. Department of This brochure was created using a grant from the Department offers vocational classes in an area that interests Labor can be found online at: of Education's Office of Vocational and Adult Education. him or her, encourage your child to take those http://www.acinet.org/acinet/default.asp. classes to get hands-on experience with the tools and skills used in the career area. hy is my Help ow do I Help my hat Information Important? Child make Career does my Child need Plans? about Careers? Be an active partner with your child as he or she takes In order for your child to be well informed Great careers do not simply happen. That is why it each of these steps. Help your child: about his or her career choice, you should is important for your child to make career plans. Figure out his or her likes and dislikes and what is help your child gather information that You are the best person to ensure that your child is important to him or her. will help him or her decide if the career making wise career choices. Choosing the right career requires that your child choice matches personal interests, skills understand his or her interests, personality, skills and and values. Here are some questions that · Research shows that parents have the greatest values. There are a variety of assessment instruments should be explored: influence on their children's career choices. that career counselors use to help students identify · As a parent, you know your child better than anyone else does. their interests. You can also help your child think · What will I do in a typical workday? about his or her interests, personality, skills and values · You have more interest in helping your child by discussing the things he or she likes and dislikes · What preparation/education do I choose a rewarding career than anyone else. and how those preferences relate to career choices. For need? · Your child's future is too important to be left to more information on interest assessments, see the · Where can I get training for this "luck" or "chance." "Helping your Child Identify Interests" section of the career? Parent's Guide at: http://www.acrnetwork.org/par- · Will there be jobs available in the entsguide/. future, when I complete my Here are some important notes about your child's Learn about careers. training? career decision-making process: It is important for your child to have as much informa- · How much does this job pay? An tion as possible about his or her career interests. Many exercise in budgeting can help your · Because of your child's limited knowledge career decisions are made with limited information, and this can result in wrong career choices. Help your child decide if he or she will be able about career opportunities, he or she needs guidance to choose the best educational and child gather written information about his or her career to maintain the lifestyle of his or her career path. interests, talk with people who work in the career, and choice on the expected salary. · Your child should explore many different experience work in his or her chosen career. See the · What knowledge and skills are used U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Information careers and think about what he or she likes in this work? Network (O*Net) at: http://online.onetcenter.org/. and dislikes about each one before focusing on Click on "Skills Search." · Are these knowledge and skill areas a career. in which I am already strong, or will · It is important to have a career plan in place Set primary and secondary goals. I need additional development? Your child may have a dream career in mind, but he or before investing time, energy and money in How do I get that development? she should explore alternative goals as well. For exam- college. · What are the opportunities for ple, if your child's primary career goal is to be a profes- sional athlete, he or she should also consider other advancement in this career? goals in the sports field such as sports medicine, sports · Is the work environment (indoors/ promotion, coaching or physical education. It is always outdoors, office/factory, groups/ wise to have alternative goals. alone) one in which I work best? Create and follow a plan. · Does the work require physical Help your child create an educational plan to reach his activity, and am I willing and able to or her career goal. This includes carefully choosing courses to take in high school. Make sure that your perform at the level required? child is well prepared for college or other post-high school training.
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