Children's curiosity and enthusiasm is often a stark contrast to the world of ordinary that adults live in. We easily forget how thrilling simple things like rain, bubbles, paint, and caterpillars used to be. Fortunately, there are always children around to remind us of how exciting a place the world really is. And fortunately, there is a host of talented teaching professionals ready to embrace children's enthusiasm and help these young students develop into curious, enthusiastic, talented adults.
By obtaining your Associate's Degree in elementary education and teaching, you will harbor the skills necessary to teach students and show them how to apply their strengths to learning. You'll serve as an important force during those critical formative years, encouraging students to delve into the world around them. In a way, for as inspiring as children can be sometimes, you'll be in the position of inspiring the inspirers, making a firm impression that serves as a foundation for their futures. Start your training today!
Since children and their curiosity never seem to cease, an elementary teacher's ability to keep up with them needs to be equally ceaseless as well. The primary responsibilities an elementary educator maintains include planning lessons that effectively communicate certain information, especially in regards to reading and mathematics. Teaching young students study habits and social skills is also important at their stage of their education. Teachers must also proactively evaluate students and their abilities so that they can adjust curriculum appropriately and provide feedback to parents and other educators. Communication with parents, fellow teachers, and educational administrators is also important to make sure that everyone involved in the education process is regularly informed. Even performing more supervisory tasks such as watching students on the playground or enforcing rules in the classroom are necessary in this role.
Talented educators are not just born with these skills, however. When you earn an Associate's Degree in elementary education, you will develop your understanding of curriculum development, child psychology, teaching techniques, communication skills, research practices, state requirements, and other areas of the discipline. This is taught through classroom instruction, reading, and observations and practice inside of actual classroom.
In most cases, elementary educators work in schools as teachers of kindergarten through 5th grade. This represents a wide area of child development, and so teachers are prepared with a thorough background of understanding the unique needs of every age. These teachers also have experience dealing with students from a variety of ethnic and linguistic backgrounds. There are also many students with unique needs in relation to their ways of learning, possible learning impairments, their behavioral disorders, or other diagnoses that might classify various students in special education.
Those with an Associate's Degree in elementary education can find employment in more than just a school's classroom. Since there are many programs throughout the community that seek to enrich young students, your abilities recommend you for roles as a tutor, a curriculum developer, or an educational consultant. While schools do benefit from these professionals, you could also utilize these positions in tutoring centers, libraries, bookstores, park districts, camps, and daycares.
Fortunately, even though children's curiosity seems unable to quenched, there are talented elementary education professionals who can meet their needs for knowledge. With an Associate's Degree in elementary education and teaching, you will have the background, skills, and experience needed to turn every moment with a young child into a teaching moment. You will be able to develop curriculum, manage a classroom, plan lessons, communicate with families, and develop materials that will make lasting impressions on youth. You are serving a vital role in the foundation of other people's lives, and as adults who have our own fond memories of our elementary teachers, we salute you.
During your degree training you’ll be exposed to many courses that will help you build a foundation for your teaching career.
- Childhood Development
- Education Theory
- Planning and Organizing
- Effective Teaching
- Teacher education diversity
- Elementary education methods
- Social Studies Curriculum
- Reading Methods
- Educational Psychology
To become a licensed elementary teacher you’ll need to finish your Associates degree program and transfer those credits or continue on with your Bachelor’s degree. Because you won’t have your license after your AA degree it doesn’t mean you can’t get a job in elementary education. You can apply for positions as a substitute teacher or even a paraprofessional. These roles typically do not require you to have your official license.
During your training it is recommended that you volunteer at your local school. Often teachers will hire parents are those who volunteer or show a willingness to help out.
When researching schools for your elementary education degree it is important that the school also offers a transition into a Bachelor’s degree so you can get your license. Many states have schools that the state guarantees those credits can be transferred into a 4 year college so it is recommended to check with your state first before enrolling in any school. Below are also things to check before enrolling.
1. Accreditation – Is the school you want to attend accredited? Is the school in good standings with the state? It is recommended that you verify these things prior to enrolling.
2. Tuition Costs – As long as the school you are attending will allow you to obtain your license upon graduation then you’ll want to enroll in the school that has the lowest tuition cost per credit. We know of schools that have low tuition costs where other could charge $30,000 or more for the same degree so please shop around and don’t just enroll in the first school that you find.
3. Reputation – Check online to see if the school that offers your associates degree in elementary education has good feedback. Often if the school has poor feedback it will show up very high in Google. Here you’ll be able to read reviews and even talk to former students who attended the schools.
Job growth is expected to be 17% over the next 10 years. The median salary is $52,000 where entry level positions start around $36,000.