Preschool teachers work with a wider range of ages and developmental milestones than most teachers in early education. They have to be positive, determined and prepared for just about anything that’s thrown their way. There’s not much that isn’t in a preschool teacher job description.
Preschool teachers are expected to provide a safe learning environment for children as young as two and half and as old as five years old. Think of it as playing part teacher and part daytime mom to a dozen or more little ones. Imagination is basically written into each and every preschool teacher job description. They must offer options for creative, and preferably fun, learning. Preschool teachers are there to help little ones get a strong start on their academic careers. That means they must be confident teaching a whole range of subjects from basic math (think counting) to early literacy skills (a lot of this is reading out loud and teaching letters). Because each child potty trains at his or her own pace, you may even be in charge of helping out in that department. Preschool teachers also double as cleanup crews. From spills to accidents, they can’t be afraid to get their hands dirty.
Preschool teachers must hold a minimum of an associate degree. While a two-year higher education program is sufficient at some preschools, many prefer their teachers to hold a bachelor’s degree. Experience is also key to most preschool positions. Working at a kids’ summer camp or volunteering in your church’s nursery proves that you’ve got the skills and the smarts to handle your own classroom. A preschool teacher should also be able to demonstrate creativity, while maintaining a sense of structure and organization. Finally, since safety is part of every preschool teacher job description, a preschool teacher should be certified in both CPR and first aid.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average preschool teacher makes about $26,000 per year. The highest paying preschool positions tend to be the ones that exist in elementary schools. Lead preschool teachers also make more than preschool teacher assistants, meaning that it pays to run your own classroom.
-“Preschool Teacher Job Description” America’s Job Exchange: http://www.americasjobexchange.com/preschool-teacher-job-description
-“Preschool Teacher Requirements and Career Information” Education Portal: http://education-portal.com/preschool_teacher_requirements.html
-“Preschool Teachers” Bureau of Labor Statistics: http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Education-Training-and-Library/Preschool-teachers.htm