Elementary School Teacher: Education and Job Training Requirements for Becoming an Elementary School Teacher

Published Sep 07, 2009

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Elementary school teacher are responsible for educating and disciplining children in primary school. An elementary school teacher teaches general subjects, including reading, writing, math and English, and checks and grades homework and classroom work. Entry-level positions for elementary school teachers require a bachelor's degree and teaching license.

Elementary School Teacher Career Summary

An elementary school teacher teaches children in primary education classes, kindergarten through sixth grade. Generalist elementary school teachers teach all academic subjects, such as writing, reading, math and social sciences. Primary school teachers may also specialize in areas, such as physical education or English. Teachers plan lessons and curriculum following the guidelines of the school districts in which they teach. An elementary school teacher grades class work, maintains discipline and ensures that state and federal guidelines are met in the teaching environment, according to About.com.

Required Education to Become an Elementary School Teacher

Entry-level positions as elementary school teachers require a minimum of a bachelor's degree from a program designed to prepare graduates for teaching elementary school, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, www.bls.gov. Subjects of study should include art, music, mathematics, physical science, social science and literature. Elementary education courses include teaching methods, psychology of learning and philosophy of education. Accredited teacher education programs also require computer and technology classes.

Job Training and Certifications Required to Work as an Elementary School Teacher

Every state and the District of Columbia requires an elementary school teacher to be licensed, although licensure isn't required for private schools. The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards sponsors a voluntary certification that allows an elementary school teacher to present a portfolio of achievements and sit for an examination of teaching knowledge, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Special benefits are provided to teachers who hold national certification.

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