Career summary

Details for Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education


Description

Teach pupils in public or private schools at the elementary level basic academic, social, and other formative skills.

Tasks

  • Establish and enforce rules for behavior and procedures for maintaining order among the students for whom they are responsible.
  • Adapt teaching methods and instructional materials to meet students' varying needs and interests.
  • Instruct students individually and in groups, using various teaching methods, such as lectures, discussions, and demonstrations.
  • Confer with parents or guardians, teachers, counselors, and administrators to resolve students' behavioral and academic problems.
  • Prepare students for later grades by encouraging them to explore learning opportunities and to persevere with challenging tasks.
  • Prepare materials and classrooms for class activities.
  • Provide a variety of materials and resources for children to explore, manipulate, and use, both in learning activities and in imaginative play.
  • Establish clear objectives for all lessons, units, and projects and communicate those objectives to students.
  • Guide and counsel students with adjustment or academic problems, or special academic interests.
  • Observe and evaluate students' performance, behavior, social development, and physical health.
  • Enforce administration policies and rules governing students.
  • Read books to entire classes or small groups.
  • Plan and conduct activities for a balanced program of instruction, demonstration, and work time that provides students with opportunities to observe, question, and investigate.
  • Meet with parents and guardians to discuss their children's progress and to determine priorities for their children and their resource needs.
  • Prepare and implement remedial programs for students requiring extra help.
  • Confer with other staff members to plan and schedule lessons promoting learning, following approved curricula.
  • Prepare, administer, and grade tests and assignments to evaluate students' progress.
  • Use computers, audio-visual aids, and other equipment and materials to supplement presentations.
  • Maintain accurate and complete student records as required by laws, district policies, and administrative regulations.
  • Meet with other professionals to discuss individual students' needs and progress.
  • Organize and lead activities designed to promote physical, mental, and social development, such as games, arts and crafts, music, and storytelling.
  • Assign and grade class work and homework.
  • Instruct and monitor students in the use and care of equipment and materials to prevent injuries and damage.
  • Prepare objectives and outlines for courses of study, following curriculum guidelines or requirements of states and schools.
  • Prepare for assigned classes and show written evidence of preparation upon request of immediate supervisors.
  • Attend professional meetings, educational conferences, and teacher training workshops to maintain and improve professional competence.
  • Prepare reports on students and activities as required by administration.
  • Collaborate with other teachers and administrators in the development, evaluation, and revision of elementary school programs.
  • Organize and label materials and display students' work.
  • Supervise, evaluate, and plan assignments for teacher assistants and volunteers.
  • Plan and supervise class projects, field trips, visits by guest speakers or other experiential activities, and guide students in learning from those activities.
  • Administer standardized ability and achievement tests and interpret results to determine student strengths and areas of need.
  • Attend staff meetings and serve on committees, as required.
  • Perform administrative duties, such as assisting in school libraries, hall and cafeteria monitoring, and bus loading and unloading.
  • Involve parent volunteers and older students in children's activities to facilitate involvement in focused, complex play.
  • Select, store, order, issue, and inventory classroom equipment, materials, and supplies.
  • Provide disabled students with assistive devices, supportive technology, and assistance accessing facilities, such as restrooms.
  • Sponsor extracurricular activities, such as clubs, student organizations, and academic contests.

Interests

  • Investigative - Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
  • Artistic - Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
  • Social - Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
  • Conventional - Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.

Education, training, experience

  • Education - Most of these occupations require a four-year bachelor's degree, but some do not.
  • Training - Employees in these occupations usually need several years of work-related experience, on-the-job training, and/or vocational training.
  • Experience - A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, an accountant must complete four years of college and work for several years in accounting to be considered qualified.

Knowledge

  • Sociology and Anthropology - Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.
  • Philosophy and Theology - Knowledge of different philosophical systems and religions. This includes their basic principles, values, ethics, ways of thinking, customs, practices, and their impact on human culture.
  • Geography - Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.
  • History and Archeology - Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.
  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Clerical - Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

Skills

  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Learning Strategies - Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Instructing - Teaching others how to do something.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Related careers

  • Instructional Coordinators
  • Kindergarten Teachers, Except Special Education
  • Librarians
  • Preschool Teachers, Except Special Education
  • Recreation Workers
  • Teacher Assistants