Editor’s note: This article was originally published earlier this year. Recognizing that parents may be looking for assistance during the COVID-19 crisis with their children at home and potentially facing uncertainty about their educational and career pathways, we have added several new resources. This article may also be of interest to career professionals who work with youth. Comment below or email the Editor, firstname.lastname@example.org, if you know of a resource you think we should share with our readers. For COVID-specific resources, please refer to our regularly updated updated: Resources for Canada’s career professionals navigating COVID-19.
According to the Government of Alberta, the youth of today are likely to experience an average of 15 employment transitions in their working lifetime, including occupations in up to five different sectors of the economy, a variety of concurrent work roles, and planned and unplanned gaps in employment. Parents play a large role in teen career development. They act as examples of employees and employers and are often the first to introduce their teens to the world of work. This includes exposure to varying industries, job titles and positions, as well as job roles, tasks and attitudes toward work and career education. The following guides, articles, websites, career activities and tools will benefit parents and teens in their career development journey.
Guides for parents
The following guides may be helpful to parents who want to support and encourage their teen’s career development.
- A Career Development Resource for Parents: helping parents explore the role of coach and ally (Canada Career Information Partnership)
- Career coaching: a guide for parents (Alis)
- Homeschooling and Career Exploration: a guide for parents (Virtual Job Shadow)
- Parent Involvement Toolkit (Career Tech)
- WorkBC Parents’ Guide: a career development resource for parents to support youth
Career activities and tools
Teens and students may benefit from the following interactive activities, assessments and tools to discover and brainstorm about their futures in the world of work.
Ideas and activities for creating a career cluster T-shirt, presenting a career in your community, and brainstorming occupations and future careers within different industries.
While this book is geared toward career professionals, parents may also find it informative. It provides practical counsel and effective tools to help reduce young adults’ anxiety and to assist them to take action in the face of uncertainty. Available for free download, or for purchase in print or as an ebook.
Ideas and links to resources on teen career exploration, early career planning and planning for post-secondary education.
Simple student portfolios and career resources for students.
Resources geared toward showing young people the breadth of career possibilities, including interviews with professionals about work and life, curricular resources, a career advice platform and a book on career pathing.
Teen career exploration tests and inventories (unpaid/paid).
This CERIC-published Guide, available for free download, describes the multiplicity of pathways that youth follow when training for and finding their way in a labour market that is vastly different from when their parents were starting out. This booklet offers practical suggestions for constructive roles parents can play, activities they can undertake and resources they can use to help their children make informed, personally satisfying career decisions.
These Guiding Principles explain the many facets and benefits of career development. They can be used to guide career conversations and activities. Career Work in Action: Discussions and Activities for Professionals – Youth is a guide that helps put the Principles into action.
This updated career guide for teens draws on the principles of What Color Is Your Parachute? by Carol Christen and Richard N. Bolles to help high school and college students zero in on their favourite skills and find their perfect major or career.
Worxica is a job market research tool. It tracks Canadian job market trends by collecting and analyzing information from millions of Canadian job ads found online in the past year. Students can use this tool to find the skills and certifications local employers require in their selected occupation.
Career exploration for parents and teens
The following websites, videos and articles will help parents in the specifics of guiding their teen as they begin to consider employment and career opportunities. It’s never too early or too late in your teenager’s life to begin these explorations!
- 3 tips to help parents become informed career influencers (CareerWise)
- 5 Ways to Help Your Teens’ Career Path (The Job Network)
- Career Exploration for Kids: how to teach your child how to choose an occupation (The Balance Careers)
- Career Exploration: Free Career Exploration Resources (Career Professionals of Canada)
- Explore Careers with Your Teen (Minnesota State)
- Helping teens choose a career path (NBC)
- How can today’s students be future-ready? (CareerWise)
- How to help my young adult find their purpose (Parent Toolkit)
- How to help students describe their learning on their resume (CareerWise)
- How to help your child navigate a route to career success (The Guardian)
- ‘Irrelevant’ summer jobs still equip students with valuable skills (CareerWise)
- Role of parents in career selection (iDream Career)
- Stuck at home? Help your children discover their ‘why’ (CareerWise)
- The Parent’s Role in Career Selection (Qualifax)
- Tips for Parents: 8 ways to help your child’s career development (Career Key)
- Where there’s a WIL, there’s a way: Resources for experiential learning (CareerWise)
- Wondering Where Your Degree Might Lead You? (SFU Career Services)
This article was originally published Feb. 13, 2020 and was last updated April 16, 2020.
Want the best of CareerWise delivered to your inbox each week? Subscribe to our popular CareerWise Weekly newsletter to receive top news and views in career development every Tuesday.