Career Story: Kindergarten Teacher At A Public School

Kindergarten Teacher At A Public School

Job Title: Teacher

Education: BA in Education, Masters in Education, Lesley College

Previous Experience: I volunteered at a daycare center.

Job Tasks: I currently teach kindergarten. With five year olds, every day can be different. The students enter the room while I play music. They answer a morning question, do their calendar, sign in and then make a choice at one of the centers. (blocks, sand table,art table etc.) . We then have morning meeting and go over the weather, do the attendance, count how many days we have been in school etc.

Next is literacy time. Students work in small guided reading groups, go to the listening center, do worksheets, practice phonics, independently read or read to a friend. Then I usually do a formal phonics lesson or a shared reading lesson reading a poem.

Next is snack. We then have math. It is differentiated and I have students working on different skills. Some students are working with a teacher on a skill they need practice with, others are working independently on a skill while others are playing a math game which gives them practice on a previously taught skill.

After math I read a story aloud. Then we usually have art, physical education, music or library time.

Finally we go out for recess. After recess, half the students go home while the other have remains for lunch, writer's workshop, and then quiet choice time. I work with students individually while they have quiet choice. I assess their math and reading skills. When parents pick up their child I have a quick check in with students who have behavioral issues. Some students have sticker charts so the parents and I have a quick check-in with each other. Once all of the students are gone, I set up the room for the following day.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best parts of my job would be the students and their positive, eager attitude. I enjoy kindergarten because the students are very motivated and love to be in school. They view it as a place to play with fun learning activities, I also enjoy the curriculum. Everything can be taught in a fun and interesting way.

The worst parts of the job is when a student enters kindergarten with emotional or learning issues and there is no support for them them until they enter first grade. The schools do not like to test kindergarten children until they are in first grade.

Job Tips:
1. Learn how to multi-task. Teachers have to do much more than 20 years ago, with little support. You have to be a psychologist, nurse and behavior therapist as you teach.

2. Devote at least eight hours a day to your job so that you are well-organized and prepared for each day.

3. Involve the parents and families and invite them into your class often. Keep them abreast of what you are teaching and how they can get involved.

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