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Become A 2nd Grade Teacher

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Working As A 2nd Grade Teacher

  • Training and Teaching Others
  • Thinking Creatively
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work
  • Coaching and Developing Others
  • Documenting/Recording Information
  • Deal with People

  • Make Decisions

  • Stressful

  • $47,500

    Average Salary

What Does A 2nd Grade Teacher Do

Kindergarten and elementary school teachers prepare younger students for future schooling by teaching them basic subjects such as math and reading. 

Duties

Kindergarten and elementary school teachers typically do the following:

  • Create lesson plans to teach students subjects, such as reading, science, social studies, and math
  • Teach students how to study and communicate with others
  • Observe students to evaluate their abilities, strengths, and weaknesses
  • Teach lessons they have planned to an entire class of students or to smaller groups
  • Grade students’ assignments to monitor their progress
  • Communicate with parents about their child’s progress
  • Work with students individually to help them overcome specific learning challenges
  • Prepare students for standardized tests required by the state
  • Develop and enforce classroom rules to teach children proper behavior
  • Supervise children outside of the classroom—for example, during lunchtime or recess

Kindergarten and elementary school teachers help students learn and apply important concepts. Many teachers use a hands-on approach to help students understand abstract concepts, solve problems, and develop critical thinking skills. For example, they may demonstrate how to do a science experiment and then have the students conduct the experiment themselves. They may have students work together to learn how to collaborate to solve problems.

Kindergarten and elementary school teachers generally teach kindergarten through fourth or fifth grade. However, in some schools, elementary school teachers may teach sixth, seventh, and eighth grade. They typically teach students several subjects throughout the day.

Some teachers may teach in a multilevel classroom that includes students across two or more grades. They may teach the same group of students for several years.

Kindergarten and elementary school students spend most of their day in one classroom. Teachers may escort students to assemblies; to classes taught by other teachers, such as art or music; or to recess. While students are away from the classroom, teachers plan lessons, grade assignments, or meet with other teachers and staff.

In some schools, teachers may work in subject specialization teams in which they teach one or two specific subjects, either English and social studies or math and science. Generally, students spend half their time with one teacher and half their time with the other.

Some kindergarten and elementary school teachers teach special classes, such as art, music, and physical education.

Some schools employ teachers of English as a second language (ESL) or English for speakers of other languages (ESOL). Both of these types of teachers work exclusively with students who are learning the English language, often referred to as English language learners (ELLs). The teachers work with students individually or in groups to help them improve their English language skills and to help them with assignments from other classes.

Students with learning disabilities or emotional or behavioral disorders are often taught in traditional classes. Kindergarten and elementary teachers work with special education teachers to adapt lesson plans to these students’ needs and monitor the students’ progress. In some cases, kindergarten and elementary school teachers may co-teach lessons with special education teachers.

Some teachers maintain websites to communicate with parents about students’ assignments, upcoming events, and grades. For students in higher grades, teachers may create websites or discussion boards to present information or to expand on a lesson taught in class.

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How To Become A 2nd Grade Teacher

Kindergarten and elementary school teachers must have a bachelor’s degree. In addition, public school teachers must have a state-issued certification or license.

Education

All states require public kindergarten and elementary school teachers to have at least a bachelor’s degree in elementary education. Some states also require kindergarten and elementary school teachers to major in a content area, such as math or science. They typically enroll in their college’s teacher preparation program and also take classes in education and child psychology in addition to those required by their major.

In teacher education programs, future teachers learn how to present information to young students and how to work with young students of varying abilities and backgrounds. Programs typically include fieldwork, such as student teaching. For information about teacher preparation programs in your state, visit teach.org.

Some states require all teachers to earn a master’s degree after receiving their teaching certification.

Private schools typically seek kindergarten and elementary school teachers who have a bachelor’s degree in elementary education.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

All states require teachers in public schools to be licensed or certified. Those who teach in private schools are generally not required to be licensed. Most states require teachers to pass a background check.

Kindergarten and elementary school teachers are typically certified to teach early childhood grades, which are usually preschool through third grade, or elementary school grades, which are usually first through sixth grades or first through eighth grades.

Requirements for certification vary by state. In addition to earning a bachelor’s degree, they are required to complete a teacher preparation program and supervised experience in teaching, typically gained through student teaching. Some states require a minimum grade point average. States often require candidates to pass a general teaching certification test, as well as a test that demonstrates their knowledge of the subject they will teach. Although kindergarten and elementary school teachers typically do not teach only a single subject, they may be required to pass a content area test to earn their certification. For information on certification requirements in your state, visit teach.org.

Teachers are frequently required to complete annual professional development classes to keep their license. Some states require teachers to complete a master’s degree after receiving their certification.

All states offer an alternative route to certification for people who already have a bachelor’s degree but lack the education courses required for certification. Some alternative certification programs allow candidates to begin teaching immediately after graduation, under the supervision of an experienced teacher. These programs cover teaching methods and child development. After they complete the program, candidates are awarded full certification. Other programs require students to take classes in education before they can teach. Students may be awarded a master’s degree after completing one of these programs.

Training

In order to receive certification, teachers need to undergo a period of fieldwork, commonly referred to as student teaching. During student teaching, they work with a mentor teacher and get experience teaching students in a classroom setting. The amount of time required varies by state.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Teachers must collaborate with teacher assistants and special education teachers. In addition, they need to discuss students’ needs with parents and administrators.

Creativity. Kindergarten and elementary school teachers must plan lessons that engage young students, adapting the lessons to different learning styles.

Patience. Working with students of different abilities and backgrounds can be difficult. Kindergarten and elementary school teachers must respond with patience when students struggle with material.

Physical stamina. Working with kindergarten and elementary-aged students can be tiring. Teachers need to be able to physically, mentally, and emotionally keep up with the students.

Resourcefulness. Kindergarten and elementary school teachers need to be able to explain difficult concepts in terms that young students can understand. In addition, they must be able to get students engaged in learning and adapt their lessons to meet students’ needs.

Advancement

Experienced teachers can advance to serve as mentors to newer teachers or to become lead teachers. In these roles, they help less experienced teachers to improve their teaching skills.

With additional education or certification, teachers may become school counselors, school librarians, or instructional coordinators. Some become assistant principals or principals, both of which generally require additional schooling in education administration or leadership.

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2nd Grade Teacher Jobs

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2nd Grade Teacher Career Paths

2nd Grade Teacher
Math Teacher Instructor ESL Instructor
Academic Director
8 Yearsyrs
Lead Teacher Case Manager Special Education Teacher
Assistant Principal
10 Yearsyrs
Educator Site Coordinator Youth Director
Children's Ministries Director
5 Yearsyrs
Assistant Principal Adjunct Professor
Curriculum Director
9 Yearsyrs
Social Studies Teacher Instructor Chairperson
Dean
5 Yearsyrs
4th Grade Teacher 5th Grade Teacher Special Education Teacher
Department Chairperson
7 Yearsyrs
Special Education Teacher Adjunct Instructor Instructor
Director Of Instruction
6 Yearsyrs
Teacher Preschool Teacher
Director Of Preschool
7 Yearsyrs
5th Grade Teacher 6th Grade Teacher Special Education Teacher
Director Of Special Education
12 Yearsyrs
Substitute Teacher Teacher Pre-K Teacher
Director Of Teacher Education
5 Yearsyrs
Lead Teacher Office Manager Instructor
Education Director
7 Yearsyrs
Educator Outreach Coordinator Health Educator
Education Program Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Special Education Teacher Assistant Principal
Elementary School Principal
12 Yearsyrs
Teacher Special Education Teacher Assistant Principal
High School Principal
12 Yearsyrs
Social Studies Teacher Assistant Principal
Middle School Principal
12 Yearsyrs
Instructor Assistant Director Band Director
Orchestra Director
5 Yearsyrs
Coach Preschool Teacher Kindergarten Teacher
School Director
7 Yearsyrs
5th Grade Teacher Special Education Teacher Assistant Principal
School Principal
10 Yearsyrs
Assistant Principal High School Principal Assistant Superintendent
School Superintendent
14 Yearsyrs
Coach Teacher And Coach Assistant Principal
Vice Principal
9 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a 2nd Grade Teacher?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
2nd Grade Teacher 3.0 years
8th Grade Teacher 2.6 years
6th Grade Teacher 2.6 years
5th Grade Teacher 2.6 years
4th Grade Teacher 2.4 years
1st Grade Teacher 2.2 years
7th Grade Teacher 2.1 years
Top Employers Before
Teacher 18.9%
Internship 4.2%
Tutor 4.1%
Volunteer 2.3%
Top Employers After
Teacher 22.6%
Principal 3.3%
Tutor 3.1%
Coach 2.7%
Instructor 2.0%
Volunteer 1.9%

Do you work as a 2nd Grade Teacher?

2nd Grade Teacher Demographics

Gender

Female

82.3%

Male

16.2%

Unknown

1.5%
Ethnicity

White

81.1%

Hispanic or Latino

10.2%

Asian

6.4%

Unknown

1.7%

Black or African American

0.6%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

57.6%

French

12.3%

German

4.2%

Italian

3.6%

Arabic

2.6%

Korean

2.3%

Russian

2.3%

Chinese

2.3%

Portuguese

1.9%

Swedish

1.3%

Mandarin

1.3%

Norwegian

1.3%

Japanese

1.3%

Hebrew

1.0%

Danish

1.0%

Cantonese

1.0%

Polish

1.0%

Icelandic

0.6%

Hindi

0.6%

Dutch

0.6%
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2nd Grade Teacher Education

Schools

Grand Canyon University

14.0%

University of Phoenix

12.1%

Walden University

7.5%

Liberty University

6.0%

Northern Arizona University

5.5%

Nova Southeastern University

5.1%

Lesley University

4.8%

Texas A&M University

4.6%

University of Central Florida

4.3%

Arizona State University

4.0%

National Louis University

3.7%

Florida Atlantic University

3.5%

Ball State University

3.4%

Michigan State University

3.2%

University of Houston

3.2%

Central Connecticut State University

3.2%

Lamar University

3.1%

Towson University

3.1%

University of Northern Colorado

2.9%

University of Texas at San Antonio

2.9%
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Majors

Elementary Education

30.5%

Education

18.1%

Educational Leadership

9.5%

Early Childhood Education

6.6%

Special Education

5.9%

Curriculum And Instruction

5.5%

English

3.1%

School Counseling

2.4%

Business

2.4%

General Education, Specific Areas

2.3%

Psychology

2.0%

Teaching Assistants/Aides

1.7%

Interdisciplinary Studies

1.6%

Educational Technology

1.5%

Human Development

1.4%

History

1.3%

Counseling Psychology

1.2%

Liberal Arts

1.2%

Management

0.9%

Secondary Education And Teaching

0.9%
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Degrees

Masters

45.6%

Bachelors

32.9%

Other

13.2%

Certificate

3.6%

Doctorate

2.4%

Associate

1.7%

Diploma

0.4%

License

0.4%
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Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real 2nd Grade Teacher Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Grade 1 Mandarin Immersion Teacher Yu Ming Charter School Oakland, CA Jul 15, 2014 $60,160 -
$70,219
Bilingual 2Nd Grade Teacher Jefferson County Public Schools Arvada, CO Jul 22, 2013 $57,219
Bilingual 2Nd Grade Teacher Jefferson County Public Schools Arvada, CO Jan 16, 2014 $57,219
Teacher of Biology, Grades New York City Charter HS for Archit., Eng'g, & Construction Industries New York, NY Sep 15, 2016 $55,790
2Nd Grade Teacher Houston Independent School District Houston, TX May 08, 2016 $54,500
Bilingual 2Nd Grade Teacher Irving Independent School District Irving, TX Sep 20, 2010 $54,040
2Nd Grade Bilingual Teacher Splendora Independent School District Splendora, TX Oct 16, 2015 $53,800
Middle Grades OLA Teacher City of Cambridge Cambridge, MA Oct 01, 2014 $53,286
2Nd Grade Bilingual Teacher Irving Independent School District Irving, TX Dec 01, 2010 $53,200
Grade 4 Mandarin Immersion Teacher Yu Ming Charter School Oakland, CA Jan 08, 2016 $52,840 -
$63,639
2Nd Grade Bilingual Teacher Splendora Independent School District Splendora, TX Apr 01, 2016 $52,500
2Nd Grade Bilingual Teacher Houston Independent School District Houston, TX Sep 07, 2016 $52,000
Grade 3 Mandarin Immersion Teacher Yu Ming Charter School Oakland, CA Jun 13, 2015 $51,920 -
$61,636
Grade 2 Mandarin Immersion Teacher Yu Ming Charter School Oakland, CA Sep 15, 2016 $51,800 -
$61,986
Grade 3 Mandarin Immersion Teacher Yu Ming Charter School Oakland, CA Jan 10, 2016 $51,800 -
$61,986
Associate Teacher, Grade 2, Chinese Avenues New York LLC New York, NY Aug 26, 2016 $51,020
Associate Teacher, Grade 2, Chinese Avenues New York LLC New York, NY Sep 14, 2016 $51,020
Teacher, Grades K Basis Educational Group New York, NY May 09, 2016 $51,020 -
$63,149
Grade 3 Mandarin Immersion Teacher Yu Ming Charter School Oakland, CA Aug 07, 2013 $50,100 -
$60,159
Grade 4 Mandarin Immersion Teacher Yu Ming Charter School Oakland, CA Jun 17, 2014 $50,100 -
$60,159
Grade 3 Mandarin Immersion Teacher Yu Ming Charter School Oakland, CA Sep 15, 2014 $50,100 -
$60,159
K-2Nd Grade Mandarin Teacher A Childs Garden Christian Preschool Berkeley, CA Oct 01, 2011 $45,163
Grade 2 Mandarin Immersion Teacher Yu Ming Charter School Oakland, CA Jun 13, 2012 $45,001
Grade 2 Mandarin Immersion Teacher Yu Ming Charter School Oakland, CA Oct 01, 2012 $45,001
Teacher, Grade 5 Circle Inc. Darnestown, MD Aug 13, 2012 $45,000
Grade ONE Teacher St. Augustine Parochial School Union City, NJ Jul 21, 2009 $44,360
Professor 1St. Grade and 2Nd Grade KCC Employees, LLC Riverview, FL Oct 01, 2015 $43,730
Bilingual 2Nd Grade Teacher Roaring Fork School District Basalt, CO Aug 15, 2011 $43,455

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Top Skills for A 2nd Grade Teacher

ClassroomManagementGradeCurriculumMathematicsSkillsWeeklyLessonPlansLanguageArtsSocialStudiesGradeLevelMeetingsSmallGroupInstructionLiteracyProfessionalDevelopmentIEPStateStandardsPositiveLearningEnvironmentSubjectAreasBulletinBoardsGradeTeacherSpecialEducationTeachersHistoryLiteratureLearningStyles

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  1. Classroom Management
  2. Grade Curriculum
  3. Mathematics Skills
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Established a classroom management system.
  • Instruct 2nd Grade curriculum, designing and developing programs to meet the academic, intellectual, and social needs of students.
  • Designed weekly lesson plans that provided the fundamental building blocks that prepared the student for the next grade level.
  • Designed lessons and lead direct and indirect instruction to 5-8th-grade reading, language arts, social studies and science students.
  • Provided math, reading, science, social studies and writing instruction to 1st and 2nd grade students.

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