Introduction to Career Portals

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  • Lesson Identification and TEKS Addressed

    Cluster : Career Development

    Course : Career Portals: Middle School

  • TEKS Student Expectations

    • (4) The student explores the professional skills needed for college and career success. The student is expected to:
      • (C) develop a personal six-or eight-year achievement plan that incorporates rigorous academic and relevant enrichment courses

    An overview of ALL course TEKS and student expectations will be provided to students.

  • Basic Direct Teach Lesson

    Instructional Objectives

    Students will:

    • explain the connection between Career and Technical Education (CTE) and Career Portals
    • review the course TEKS and student expectations
    • explore the coherent sequencing of CTE courses available in their district and their campus
    • begin exploring information that will lead to development a personal six-or eight-year achievement plan that incorporates rigorous academic and relevant enrichment courses
  • Rationale


    Today we will be talking about all the topics we will be covering in this semester/year long course.

    The purpose of this lesson is to serve as an introduction to the Career Portals course. I will introduce you to the world of Career and Technical Education (CTE) and the 16 career clusters. By the end of this lesson you will understand that this Career Portals course will prepare you for CTE courses offered in High School. We will also explore the sequencing of courses available in our district and local high school(s) as well as develop an awareness of career pathways that this course can lead you to.

    I will also present you with a copy of the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS), student expectations, and an overview of this course.

  • Duration of Lesson

    Two 45 minute class periods

  • Word Wall

    Abilities: The power or capacity to do special skills or talents

    Achievements: Something accomplished especially by superior ability or special effort

    Aptitude: Readiness or quickness in learning; intelligence

    Career: A persons’ occupation or profession, especially one requiring special training followed by one’s lifework

    Future: Something that will exist or happen in time to come

    Goals: The result or achievement toward which effort is directed; aim; end

    Job: a piece of work, especially a specific task done as part of the routine of one’s occupation or for an agreed price

    Occupation: A person’s usual or principal work or business, especially as a means of earning a living

    Options: The power or right of choosing

    Skills: A craft, trade, or job coming from one’s knowledge or practice to do something well

    Strategies A plan, method,or series of manevuers to obtain a specific goal or result

    Success: The achievement of something desired, planned,or attempted

    Talents: A special natural ability or aptitude

  • Materials/Specialized Equipment Needed


    • computer with Internet access for multimedia presentations


    • easels with a chart tablet or large poster board listing Career Clusters that will be explored during this course

    • copies of handouts (see All Lessons Attachments tab)
  • Anticipatory Set

    Before class begins:

    Place one easels and/or poster board/large tablet in front of the classroom. Title with the name of the career clusters that will be studied.

    • Education and Training
    • Hospitality and Tourism
    • Human Services.

    Greet each student with a handshake as they enter the classroom and hand them each a random Job/Career Card (see All Lesson Attachments tab) which contains a specific job/career title from the career cluster being studied that day.
    After group discussion have students hold on to the card to be used later on in the class.
    Repeat process each day as they enter into the classroom until the three clusters have been introduced to the students.

    Distribute Career and Technical Education KWL Chart (see All Lesson Attachments tab). Instruct students to fill out the first two columns of the chart. The document will be revisited during lesson closure.


    If time permits, allow students to personalize their Word Cloud – Career Portals (see all Lessons Attachments tab) and place in their class folder/binder as a cover sheet for any other documents related to this lesson.

  • Direct Instruction with Special Education Modifications/Accommodations

    Introduce lesson TEKS, objectives, terms and definions.

    Instruct student to take notes during upcoming slide presentation.

    Begin PowerPoint™ Introduction to Career Portals. (see All Lesson Attachments tab) Allow for thorough class discussion and questions and answers. Stress the Career Clusters they will be learning about in this course


    Additional slide presentation 16 Career Clusters™ (see All Lesson Attachments tab) may be viewed to reinforce career clusters.

    Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for all special education students must be followed. Examples of accommodations may include, but are not limited to:

    • checking for understanding
    • providing student with a copy of PowerPoint™ presentation notes

  • Guided Practice with Special Education Modifications/Accommodations

    Distribute Career Portals Find Someone Who…. activity (see All Lesson Attachments tab).

    Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for all special education students must be followed. Examples of accommodations may include, but are not limited to:

    • checking for understanding
    • providing assistance with note-taking

  • Independent Practice/Laboratory Experience with Special Education Modifications/Accommodations

    Instruct students to individually create their interpretation of the CTE/course information presented at the end of the slide presentation. Finished product may be used as the cover sheet for their Career Portfolio, class binder, folder or journal. Students may draw or use a computer to complete the task. See Enrichment Activity below.

    Product must include/answer the following:

    • What does CTE stand for?
    • What is the name of this course?
    • What cluster is this course in?
    • What programs of study are in this cluster?
    • Cluster descriptor

    Distribute Career and Technical Education (CTE) Rubric (see All Lesson Attachments tab). Provide a thorough explanation so that students will know how their product will be assessed.

    Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for all special education students must be followed. Examples of accommodations may include, but are not limited to:

    • checking for understanding
    • providing assistance with note-taking

  • Lesson Closure

    Review lesson objectives, terms and definitions.

    Students will complete the final column of their KWL chart.

  • Summative/End of Lesson Assessment with Special Education Modifications/Accommodations

    CTE project will be assessed with Career and Technical Education Rubric.

    Individualized Education Plan (IEP) ffor all special education students must be followed. Examples of accommodations may include, but are not limited to:

    • grading according to work done
    • providing praise and encouragement

  • References/Resources


    • Aric Bostick_ I Rock Living My Dreams_ A Success System. St. Louis, Missouri: United States. 2009
    • Mindy Bingham and Sandy Stryker._ Career Choices: A Guide for Teens And Young Adults._Third Edition. United States, 2003 Print
    • M.B.Flippen.Teen Leadership Developing Leaders for the Future_ College Station, Texas. United States, 2001 Print


    • Dictionary
      The world’s most popular dictionary and thesaurus with definitions, synonyms, antonyms, idioms, word origins, quotes, audio pronunciations, and example sentences.
    • National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium
      NASDCTEc provides members and the CTE community with vital tools, resources and timely information required to support high-quality.
  • Additional Required Components

    English Language Proficiency Standards (ELPS) Strategies

  • College and Career Readiness Connection

    AchieveTexas Career Cluster Crosswalks

    The Career Cluster Crosswalks housed on the AchieveTexas website provide Texas teachers with a direct connection between their CTE course TEKS and the College and Career Readiness Standards (CCRS). Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, and Cross-Disciplinary integration are the focus of the CCRS. These college and career readiness standards are essential in the planning and delivery of CTE lessons. The extent to which the integration occurs is determined by the methods and strategies utilized by each teacher.

    Career Cluster Crosswalks for Education and Training, Hospitality and Tourism, and Human Services Career Clusters can be found at:

  • Other Essential Lesson Components

    Enrichment activity

    • Celebrate and showcase CTE during the month of February.
  • Family/Community Connection

    • Develop a list of guest speakers that can be invited to the Career Portals classroom throughout the school year.
    • Create a Public Service Announcement (PSA) regarding CTE to share with the student body or PTSA/PTSO.
  • CTSO connection

    Introductory lessons may have a CTSO or service learning connection. It is possible that student ideas may be saved and the actual project(s) executed during the school year.

    Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America

    Career Connection Units:
    Career Connection guides students to develop, plan, carry out, and evaluate projects. The projects improve the quality of life in six (6) units. Students focus activities on different aspects of career development. Students can choose a unit, then plan and carry out related projects that strengthen their awareness of skills needed for careers.
    PLUG IN to Careers — Understand work and the Career Connection Program
    SIGN ON to the Career Connection — Link personal interests, skills, and goals to career clusters
    PROGRAM Career Steps — Prepare with education, leadership, and work experience
    LINK UP to Jobs — Learn to find and land a job
    ACCESS SKILLS for Career Success— Practice being productive on the job
    INTEGRATE Work and Life — Manage interconnected roles in families, careers, and communities.



  • Service Learning Projects

    Successful service learning project ideas originate from student concerns and needs. Allow students to brainstorm about service projects pertaining to lesson. For additional information on service learning see:

  • All Attachments