Teaching is not a career to embark on if you want to become rich. It's a job for people with patience, love of young people and a love of molding young minds with new knowledge. I knew from my first teaching job that it's was the place for me. Children will always surprise you with their curious nature and their opinions. They know more and observe more than most know.
The requirements to become a teacher vary from state to state. You will need a four year degree in education specializing in what you would like to teach especially if you want to teach in high schools. You will eventually have to get a masters degree. Some universities if you already have a four year degree will let you follow a master's in education and you teach in the field of your first degree. You can get a degree to teach early childhood, elementary, high school or special education. The degree varies but the years might be grouped such as K-5, 6-8th or 9th through 12th . Some states have you do a year's internship before giving you a teach certificate. You can get emergency certification before you have all the required classes but generally that's only if there is a shortage of teachers or some situation like that. To find out the requirements to becoming a teacher in your state contact a university or the department of education.
One of the important things about becoming a teacher is to decide what age you want to teach. Kindergarten through third grades are fun but there is also something to be said for teaching older students because you can have in depth conversations with them about what you are teaching. You also have to decide what you want to teach. If you teach high school you will need an area of interest. In elementary school you may find yourself teaching all subjects especially in the lower grades like kindergarten.
Overall, this is a fun occupation but it takes a lot of dedication. Some people mistakenly think it is easy but you often find yourself working at home in the evenings and on weekends for no extra pay. If you think teachers have summers off you are incorrect. They are in college themselves furthering their education or taking professional development courses and there are teachers who work at other jobs during the summer to make ends meet. Becoming a teacher is not a profession for everyone so think carefully before deciding.