Are you cut out to be a kindergarten teacher?
Kindergarten teachers more than others, must quickly establish a nurturing and friendly relationship with the students. Are you cut out to be one? It might sound easy, that kindergarten is just playing around, but it's not. Not only are kindergarteners hard at work, but kindergarten teachers MUST have an extra skill set that others don't necessarily need or want. It takes someone special to be the head of a bunch of toddlers just now facing the world....alone.
Kindergarten teachers must be encouragers. No disparaging words can ever come from your lips. The students are, after all, just kids. And very little ones. You must be able to turn a negative situation into a positive one. Your words can heal, soothe, encourage, empower, and teach. You must point out what is wrong or bad, but from the opposite side. Not all teachers are cut out for that.
Toddlers need to settle into a routine. In fact, they demand it. They will tell you when things are not going as usual. But that's not a bad thing. That is teaching them that there is a time and place for everything. Starting with circle time, play time, and snack time, they will know what comes next and make your job easier! Be prepared for a toddler revolt if you vary on any day....be sure to warn them with explanations. This also teaches them to adapt. Routines lead to good habits. Like teeth brushing.
You must teach, but teaching can be playing. Try and incorporate some type of play time for each activity. The kindergarteners will socialize during this time. They will learn how to share and work together.
Kindergarten teachers will need rules. Kids at this age are just beginning to learn that there are rules that must be followed. Make them kindergarten-friendly, of course. You do not have a class of middle-schoolers. The rules are when to get up, when to talk, when to go potty, clean up, etc.
These kids have got to be moving! And that means you should have music on several times during the day. Put on songs that teach as well as entertain. Learning the days of the week and months by music is fun for them. They are bundles of energy so put that energy to work.
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You can improve your teaching skills and classroom management. These techniques are not taught in college, but come from real-world experience.
What does a kindergarten teacher do?
Plenty. A kindergarten teacher's day is full. It is not all fun and games. It is very hard work. How to do teach, encourage, and help a room full of very active children?
In order to teach this level, you must be able to teach students with very little lecturing. You are modeling behavior. You are guiding them. You are leading them. Yes, you must be following the district guidelines of instruction subjects, outcomes, and curriculum. Every lesson you do will have some sort of science, reading, writing, and math.
Of course kindergarten teachers are not just your average teacher. No. They are also nurturers. And they also have many roles to fill. You are the room supervisor in charge of the health and well-being of your students. This includes practicing good hygiene. Proper use of pencils, scissors, playground equipment. You are in charge of their safety. And don't think you don't have to worry about discipline. Your discipline could be harder than other classrooms. You must do it gently and firmly. Remember, you are modeling good behavior all the time.
And you must do all this while monitoring and correcting student work, and keeping all on taks. Not an easy job now, is it? That's why you must also become friends with parents. They will be the biggest help you can get. They can help in the classroom. They can supplement your lessons at home. You must be on top of how the students are progressing and make the parents aware.
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