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Students learn about thinking about their future careers.






A lesson plan and lesson on thinking about your future, work, and career. This lesson is intended to help students prepare for their future and to develop the life skills they will need to be successful in all their endeavors.


Subject: Career Education, Preparation, and Exploration



  • Identify your personal likes, dislikes and needs

  • Learn what motivates you

  • Identify potential careers that may be fulfilling to you based upon your likes, dislikes and needs

Suggested/Recommended Grades:

9th-12th grade, Secondary Education, High School and Special Education








Optional Pre-Lesson Preparation:

The book titled, “Who am I? The 16 basic desires that motivate our actions and define our personalities." By Steven Reiss, PhD. Copyright 2000. Published by Tarcher/Putnam, New York.


The instructor may find the content of this book useful in leading discussions of concepts presented in this lesson. This recommendation is primarily intended to provide instructors with added information in regard to motivating desires.


• The Reiss Profile for Schools (one for each student) available to be ordered from IDS Publishing via the following web link:


This is a psychological profile test created by Steven Reiss, Ph.D. The school version is appropriate for students in middle school and high school. It is based upon peer-reviewed research and it is a comprehensive test of motivational factors that will help students discover what motivates them. The test results may also be useful to teachers and parents in identifying students’ individualized motivational factors.



Lesson Instruction and Discussion

Discuss the lesson’s objectives with the students.

  • Instruct them to read the lesson and to answer the questions on the worksheet.



Suggested Assignments or Activities


1. Partner Activity


Materials: Assignment 1 at the bottom of this page.


Assignment: Instruct students to choose a partner for this assignment, or pair the students yourself. Assign students to rank the needs based on their perception of their partners needs in order of importance. They are not to discuss these needs with one another, but are to complete the assignment based on their own perceptions.


Activity: Lead students to discuss how their ranking of their own needs compare to the rankings of their needs based on their partners perceptions. Explain to students that even though from time to time, other people’s perceptions of us as individuals may be accurate, many times they are not. Therefore, in determining what is important to us as individuals and in choosing our own life course, we need to consider our needs as we realize them rather than relying upon the opinions of others in regard to what is best for us.


Grading Criteria: The grading criterion for this assignment would be extremely subjective; thus it should be graded only as pass or fail based upon participation. The primary purpose of the assignment is to bring students to the realization that they are the best judge of their own needs and their personal vision.



2. Administer the Reiss Profile for Schools.

Materials: A Reiss Profile for Schools test for each student. The parental discussion form found in Assignment 2 at the bottom of this page.


Assignment: Instruct students to complete the test in accordance with the instructions provided with the profile. Once the results are determined, encourage students, for extra credit points, to discuss the results with their parents or guardians and to return the parental discussion form from assignment 2.


Activity: Explain to the students how to interpret the results from their profile and offer to answer any of their questions either in class or privately. Do not have students share their outcomes with classmates unless they voluntarily choose to do so.


Grading Criteria: The purpose of this assignment/activity is to provide students with information about themselves and their own needs. It should not be graded. You may opt to give students extra credit for sharing the results with their parents; however, this also should be optional.



3. Career Research

Materials: Library and Internet resources; assignment 3.


Assignment: Instruct students to complete research regarding one or more of the careers that they identified in the Lesson 3 worksheet and to prepare a research outline and/or presentation on the topic.


Activity: Have students make oral presentations regarding the findings from their research.


Grading Criteria: This assignment should be graded based upon the quality of the research and effort put into it and/or the presentation.




Lesson Printable Materials - Worksheets

Print out the following career printable worksheet pages for use with this lesson:



Future Career Lesson *

Printable Future Career student lesson.



Future Career Worksheet *

Lesson worksheet.




Future Career Assignments *

Lesson assignments.


Do you have a recommendation for an enhancement to this career lesson, or do you have an idea for a new lesson?  Then leave us a suggestion.





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Teaching Future Career Prepare Education High School College Assessment Workshop kit - Sample Example Students Practice Teacher Business Life Skills Program Curriculum Unit Quiz Test Activity Online Education Development Test Pre resume preparation Guidance Choice Awareness Pathway - High School Students - Secondary education - Adults - Special Education - Teens - Teenagers - Kids Free Instruct - Thematic Unit - Secondary Education - Middle School - Young Adults - Classroom Review - Career Education Lesson

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