Career Detail

Teacher - Elementary
“Mind Growers”
Elementary school teachers play a vital role in the development of children. They introduce children to mathematics, language, science, and social studies.
The Job
Letter recognition, phonics, numbers, and awareness of nature and science, introduced at the preschool level, are taught primarily in kindergarten. Most elementary school teachers instruct one class of children in several subjects. In some schools, two or more teachers work as a team and are jointly responsible for a group of students in at least one subject. elementary school teachers introduce children to mathematics, language, science, and social studies. They use games, music, artwork, films, books, computers, and other tools to teach basic skills. Including school duties performed outside the classroom, many teachers work more than 40 hours a week.
Work Environment
In addition to conducting classroom activities, teachers oversee study halls and homerooms, supervise extracurricular activities, and accompany students on field trips.
College Majors
General Education, bachelor's degree from a teacher education program and then obtaining a license
Minimum Qualifications
The traditional route to becoming a public school teacher involves completing a bachelor's degree from a teacher education program and then obtaining a license. Most states now offer alternative routes to licensure for those who have a college degree in other fields.
Personality traits helpful for this career
Inspire trust and confidence, motivate students, understand the students' educational and emotional needs.
Quick Facts
  • Many States offer alternative licensing programs to those with a bachelor's degree.
  • Opportunities will vary by geographic area.
  • National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education,
  • National Center for Alternative Certification,
  • Teachers can increase their income through coaching and other extra curricular activities.
Compensation and Outlook
Median annual wages of kindergarten, elementary, middle, and secondary school teachers ranged from $47,100 to $51,180 in May 2008; the lowest 10 percent earned $30,970 to $34,280; the top 10 percent earned $75,190 to $80,970.
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