The Best Degrees For Students Who Want To Work With Children

Published on: August 13, 2023

Everyone knows the famous quote by W.C. Fields that says “Never work with children or animals” but for some people, this would be a dream come true. Working with children may require a lot of patience, but can also be immensely rewarding. People who have made careers out of working with children often state that not only can their jobs be fun, but that children also motivate them to be better people and that they get to celebrate the little things every day. If this sounds like the perfect career choice for you then take a look at some of the best degrees that can help to make it a reality.

What Skills Are Needed To Work With Children?

The right degree is important, but working with children also requires special skills. No matter what career path you choose, these are the most important skills needed to be successful when working with children.

Communication - Good communication skills are essential when working with children in order to understand what their wants and needs are. Verbal and nonverbal communication skills are necessary, especially when working with younger children or ones with developmental issues. This also goes hand in hand with good listening skills as children want to feel like they are being heard and understood.

Patience - When working with children they will inevitably try and test their boundaries, which makes patience an important skill. This can help to remain calm in challenging situations and to de-escalate situations where children are in conflict with each other. Working with children often requires having to repeat instructions over and over or having to explain simple things without getting impatient.

Enthusiasm - Children respond better to situations when inspired and engaged, making enthusiasm a vital skill. Being enthusiastic can help to make activities that might be boring to children more fun for them.

Dedication - Working with children can be a slow and frustrating process, so being dedicated is essential to keep you from getting discouraged. Children can also easily sense things like frustration, which can be demoralizing for them.

Leadership - Good leadership skills are important when working for children as they will look to you for guidance. Being confident and able to take charge of any situation can be immensely useful.

Problem-Solving - Children can come up with the most unusual ways to get in and out of trouble, so good problem-solving skills are a must. Finally, a good sense of humor is always useful when working with children.

What Are The Most Useful Degrees For Careers That Involve Working With Children?

Numerous careers involve working with children and the type of degree needed will depend on which path you want to follow. Here are some of the most popular degrees that can lead to rewarding careers involving the youth.

Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education

Education is one of the most common career paths for people who love to work with children and a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education is a great degree way to get started. This degree focuses on elementary education and can be completed online along with some in-classroom requirements. This degree covers subjects such as Educational Foundations, Managing Engaging Learning Environments, Educational Technology for Teaching and Learning, Elementary Science Methods, and much more. It is also possible to enroll in a dual teacher licensure degree for elementary and special education. This is useful for those who want to become special education instructors for students with mild to moderate disabilities.

Bachelor of Arts in Child Development

A Bachelor of Arts in Child Development degree teaches students how to be advocates for children and their families. Students learn how to create strategies for healthy child and adolescent development as well as how to assess the needs of children, including at-risk youths. Course topics may include Child Development, Collaboration with Parents & Community, Supporting Adolescent Development, and Foundations of Play & Learning. This degree can be completed online and can lead to professional degrees as a teacher aide, childcare worker, educational assistant, family resource coordinator, youth services specialist, and more.

Master of Education in School Counseling

A Master of Education in School Counseling degree is aimed at those who want to intervene and provide support for children and adolescents facing challenging issues. These can range from bullying and mental health concerns to social development, low self-esteem, and academic issues. This degree teaches you how to identify the risk that can lead to mental health and behavioral disorders in children and how to assist them with personal growth. Course topics typically include Counseling Skills, Developmental Disabilities, Childhood, and Adolescent Trauma, Theories and Models of COunseling, and more. Graduates often go on to careers such as school counselors, guidance counselors, and educational advisors.

Bachelor of Science in Education with a Concentration in Library Science

A Bachelor of Science in Education degree with a Concentration in Library Science is geared toward students who want to promote literacy among children and become involved in community-wide projects. Course topics may include Children’s Literature, Management of Information Resources in Libraries, Leadership & Management in Libraries, Teaching & Learning in Digital Environments, and more. Students can go on to work as librarians in a number of different settings, including public libraries and schools where they can help children. In addition to typical librarian work, they can also create educational and recreational programs for children.


Working with children is a learning experience even with the best qualifications and the right skills. Children can be unpredictable and working with them on a daily basis can be exhausting. There are also other downsides, such as increased exposure to illnesses and sometimes having to deal with challenging situations with parents. However, working with children and making a difference in their lives also allows you to see the world in a whole new way.

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