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Career Story: Elementary School Special Education Tutor

Elementary School Special Education Tutor

Job Title: Special Education Tutor

Type of Company: I work for a school district in the Hartford, Connecticut metropolitan area.

Education: AS, Fashion Merchandising, Fisher College (Boston, MA) •• BS, Marketing, Central Connecticut State University

Previous Experience: Before working in my current school, I worked temporarily in another school to determine if I would like the position of special education tutor.

Job Tasks: My job requires me to work with elementary school children in kindergarten through grade 4. These children are special needs children with various diagnoses. They range from autistic to behavior-challenged. I assist them on a daily basis to be successful in the classroom. In addition, I support the classroom teachers with any necessary tasks. I help with guided lessons in math and reading. I also work with children using various special reading programs to increase fluency and reading skills.

In a classroom such as kindergarten a typical day includes working on art projects, or reading stories. It may also include teaching skills such as calendar and counting. Basic reading skills are also worked on. In an older grade such as fourth, a day will include working on creative writing. Time may also be spent reading with a group of students and discussing what was read. In math, I offer my assistance with the lesson that the teacher is giving. It may be basic addition one day and long division the next.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job is working with students from different backgrounds and ages. It is rewarding to help a child learn a new skill. That skill may be learning how to write his name or it might be multiplying two digits by two digits. The worst part of my job is discipline. It is never easy to have to give a kindergarten student a "time out" or talk to an older student who is having trouble making friends. My day is never the same and that keeps it interesting. Kids will amaze you with what they are capable of.

Job Tips: Volunteer your time in a school. Take courses to specialize in an are: special education or reading, for example. While you are in school, take opportunities to get to know all types of students, especially special needs children as there are more and more in public schools today.

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