Elementary School Teacher Job Description

When researching an elementary school teacher job description,  outside of a few state requirements, the duties will be very similar from state to state. The list of responsibilities is large, and the position is accountable to many entities such as:

  • Students
  • Parents
  • Teachers
  • School District
  • State Education Department

This may be why this position often encompasses many factors. The person who pursues an elementary school teacher career generally loves teaching, children and education. This allows them to work through the many challenges associated with this role. The actual list of responsibilities can be daunting for one without a passion for the position.

  • Present topics – Each elementary school teacher must present a number of topics including reading, writing, social studies, science, math, art, music and health. Each topic must be taught at the appropriate grade level – Kindergarten through 6th grade (K-6). Each teacher must follow a curriculum approved by the local Board of Education.
  • Planning – Each teacher creates lesson plans that incorporate teaching techniques that meet the various learning styles of the students in the class. This includes individualized learning and group activities.
  • Social skills – The teacher guides students in using good socials skills allowing them to interact appropriately with others in the class. This requires a lot of one-on-one time helping each student work through conflicts and emotional situations.
  • Behavioral monitor – The teacher works with the students to develop helpful group behaviors that allows the classroom to be a safe and effective learning environment.
  • Feedback and goal setting – The student’s progress is tracked and evaluated, usually by standards and techniques specified by the Board of Education. These results are discussed with the student and their parents. Goals are created and ongoing assistance is provided to each student so they may achieve those goals.
  • Parent meetings – The teacher meets with parents and the community to help them understand the school’s policies and procedures. They discuss the various school programs and gets help from the parents when needed.
  • Identifies student needs – Each student will have specific needs related to his/her health, learning style and attitude. The teacher will work with the parents and the other staff to develop the best way to support the student in those areas.
  • Professional growth – Teachers must keep up with the current trends in education and improves their skills by attending classes and workshops. Teacher in-service activities allow the person to experiment with different teaching techniques that they may incorporate into their own classroom.
  • Materials selection – Each teacher must gather the books and materials they need for the class from the approved sources. They must make sure that each student has the materials they need to be successful in the classroom. They must also procure the items they need to teach each class.
  • Activity supervisor – The teacher must monitor students when out of the classroom for recess or field trips.
  • Safety monitor – The teacher is responsible for the safety of each student. They must be trained in first aid and how to respond in emergency situations.
  • Testing – Each teacher gives standardized tests to the class, based on school district or state protocol. They will also deliver periodic testing on the material presented in the class.
  • Program development – This role assists in the creation of new programs and curriculum to be delivered.

Education Requirements for the Elementary School Teacher Degree

A high school diploma or GED is required for entry into a teaching program at most colleges and universities. Preference may be given to candidates who have shown an aptitude for teaching or have worked or volunteered with children or children’s programs while in high school.

A bachelor degree in education or teaching is required by most states to become an elementary school teacher. One may also hold a different degree and attain a teaching certificate in the state.

Career Options: What you can do with an Elementary School Teacher Degree

The primary position for someone with a teaching degree is an elementary school teacher. This person can also work as a professional tutor in one or more topics, become a consultant to school boards to help create teaching programs, or work in the areas producing materials used in teaching.

What to Consider if you Pursue an Elementary School Teacher Degree

According to the U.S. Department of Labor – Bureau of Labor Statistics, elementary school teachers continue to be in demand. They predict a growth of 17% between 2010 and 2020. Based on a minimum of a bachelors degree, the median annual salary is $51,300. This salary is highly variable due to geographic location, type of school (public, private or charter) and the student to teacher ratio.

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