What Do Assistant Teachers Do?
Would you like to work with students and help teachers out in the classroom? Are you unsure what assistant teachers do? If so, read on to learn about the duties assistant teachers perform. Schools offering Teaching & Learning degrees can also be found in these popular choices.
Assistant Teacher Defined
Full, and sometimes overfull, classrooms contain students with individual language, learning, emotional and health needs that can be daunting for one educational professional to fulfill. As an assistant teacher, you provide individualized attention to children while the lead teacher carries out a lesson plan. Your additional duties comprise all the teacher tasks that allow the teacher to focus more on the learning going on in the classroom. You may work in classrooms of children of all grade levels, with children who are learning English and with children who have special learning needs.
Throughout the school day, teachers have many students in their charge for whom they're responsible. They act in place of the parents and are required to provide constant supervision. Assistant teachers help maintain a safe, orderly learning environment and may be responsible for supervising children in other locations on the school grounds where trouble may arise - in the cafeteria, the library, the playground or the bus stop.
Classroom Administration and Lesson Set-Up
Teachers have some administrative duties that you would assume as an assistant teacher. Handling attendance, making phone calls home and recording grades are very supportive to teachers. You may also help set up lessons by scheduling and setting up classroom technology and equipment, making copies and preparing lesson materials.
As an assistant teacher, you may have many opportunities to work with students one-on-one or in small groups. Assistant teachers support struggling readers or assist students in retrieving information for assignments. Because special education students are often included in mainstream classrooms, you may be working primarily with students with disabilities. You may also work with English language learners using adapted materials.
Salary and Job Outlook
In May 2009, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that assistant teachers had a mean annual income of $24,280. It's difficult to generate hourly salaries because about 40% of the positions in this career are part-time, and most full-time workers don't work all year. The top 10% of assistant teachers generated yearly salaries of $35,350 or more (www.bls.gov).
The BLS also reported that assistant teachers are expected to see a 10% growth in employment from 2008 to 2018. This was predicted to be as fast as the average when compared to other occupations. If you have experience in English as a Second Language (ESL) teaching or special education teaching, favorable employment opportunities were expected.
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