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Become A Language Arts Teacher

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Working As A Language Arts Teacher

  • Documenting/Recording Information
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Training and Teaching Others
  • Coaching and Developing Others
  • Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others
  • Deal with People

  • Unpleasant/Angry People

  • Make Decisions

  • $51,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Language Arts Teacher Do

Middle school teachers educate students, typically in sixth through eighth grade. Middle school teachers help students build on the fundamentals taught in elementary school and prepare students for the more difficult curriculum they will face in high school.

Duties

Middle school teachers typically do the following:

  • Create lesson plans to teach students a subject, such as biology or history
  • Assess students to evaluate their abilities, strengths, and weaknesses
  • Teach lessons they have planned to an entire class or to smaller groups
  • Grade students’ assignments and exams 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
  • Supervise students outside of the classroom—for example, at lunchtime or during detention

Middle school teachers generally teach students from sixth to eighth grades. However, in some school districts, they may teach students as early as fourth grade or as late as ninth grade.

In many schools, middle school teachers are responsible for only some of the subjects their students learn. For example, one teacher may be responsible for teaching English and social studies while another may be responsible for teaching math and science. Some middle school instructors teach specialized classes, such as art, music, or physical education. 

Students typically change classrooms several times a day to attend lessons in different subjects. As a result, middle school teachers see several different classes of students throughout the day. However, in some middle schools, teachers teach all the subjects for one class of students the entire day. In either type of school, teachers use time during the day when they do not have classes to plan lessons, grade assignments, or meet with other teachers and staff.

Some middle school teachers work in teams that teach the same group of students. These teachers meet to discuss students’ progress and to plan future lessons.

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

Middle school teachers may also work with special education teachers to adapt lessons taught in traditional classes to meet the needs of students with learning disabilities and emotional or behavioral disorders. In some cases, middle 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 their students, teachers may create websites or discussion boards to present information or to expand a lesson taught in class.

Some middle school teachers coach sports teams and advise student clubs and groups, whose practices and meetings frequently take place before or after school.

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How To Become A Language Arts Teacher

Middle 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 middle school teachers to have at least a bachelor’s degree. Many states require middle school teachers to major in a content area, such as math or science. Other states require middle school teachers to major in elementary education. Middle school teachers typically enroll in their college’s teacher preparation program and take classes in education and child psychology in addition to the classes required by their major.

Teacher education programs teach prospective middle school teachers how to present information to students and how to work with 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 middle school teachers to earn a master’s degree after receiving their teaching certification.

Teachers in private schools do not need to meet state requirements. However, private schools typically seek middle school teachers who have a bachelor’s degree and a major in elementary education or a content area.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

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

Certification of middle school teachers varies considerably from state to state. In some states, they are certified to teach elementary school grades, which are typically first through sixth grades or first through eighth grades. In other states, they are certified to teach middle school grades, which include sixth through eighth grades. Other states provide middle school teachers with a secondary school or high school certification, which often includes seventh through twelfth grades.

Requirements for certification also vary by state. In addition to earning a bachelor’s degree, they are also required to complete a teacher preparation program and supervised experience in teaching, which is typically gained through student teaching. Some states require a minimum grade point average. States typically require candidates to pass a general teaching certification test, as well as a test that demonstrates their knowledge of the subject they will teach. For information on certification requirements in your state, visit Teach.org.

Teachers are often 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 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 either of these programs.

Training

In order to receive certification, teachers need to perform 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 other teachers and special education teachers. In addition, they need to discuss students’ needs with parents and administrators.

Patience. Working with students of different abilities and backgrounds can be difficult. Middle school teachers must be patient when students struggle with material.

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

Resourcefulness. Middle school teachers need to be able to explain difficult concepts in terms that students can understand. In addition, they need to be able to get students engaged in learning and adapt lessons to each student’s needs.

Advancement

Experienced teachers can advance to serve as mentors to newer teachers or to become lead teachers. In these positions, 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 education in education administration or leadership. For more information, see the profiles on school and career counselors, librarians, instructional coordinators, and elementary, middle, and high school principals.

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Language Arts Teacher Career Paths

Language Arts Teacher
Social Studies Teacher Special Education Teacher Adjunct Professor
Assistant Principal
10 Yearsyrs
Social Studies Teacher Math Teacher Adjunct Professor
Department Chairperson
7 Yearsyrs
Social Studies Teacher Adjunct Professor Assistant Principal
Elementary School Principal
12 Yearsyrs
Special Education Teacher Lead Teacher Director
Education Director
7 Yearsyrs
Special Education Teacher Lead Teacher Assistant Principal
School Principal
10 Yearsyrs
Coach Lead Teacher Assistant Principal
High School Principal
9 Yearsyrs
Coach Consultant Principal
Athletic Director
5 Yearsyrs
Coach Team Leader Assistant Director
School Director
6 Yearsyrs
Instructor Program Coordinator Education Consultant
Educational Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Instructor Adjunct Instructor Associate Dean
Academic Dean
10 Yearsyrs
Instructor Adjunct Instructor Department Chairperson
Vice Principal
8 Yearsyrs
Adjunct Instructor Department Chairperson Vice Principal
Middle School Principal
11 Yearsyrs
2nd Grade Teacher Math Teacher Education Consultant
Student Dean
7 Yearsyrs
Math Teacher Education Consultant Student Dean
High School Assistant Principal
10 Yearsyrs
Reading Specialist Principal Elementary School Principal
Curriculum Director
8 Yearsyrs
Team Leader Vice President Planning Committee Member
Professional Development Director
6 Yearsyrs
English Instructor Assistant Professor Department Chairperson
Academic Director
7 Yearsyrs
2nd Grade Teacher Coach/Instructor Professional Development Coordinator
Professional Development Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Adjunct Faculty Professor Associate Dean
Instruction Dean
9 Yearsyrs
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Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
6th Grade Teacher 2.7 years
5th Grade Teacher 2.7 years
Reading Teacher 2.6 years
4th Grade Teacher 2.5 years
8th Grade Teacher 2.5 years
Literacy Teacher 2.3 years
7th Grade Teacher 2.2 years
Top Careers Before Language Arts Teacher
Teacher 27.9%
Internship 3.9%
Tutor 3.4%
Instructor 2.3%
Top Careers After Language Arts Teacher
Teacher 28.3%
Principal 3.9%
Tutor 3.7%
Coach 3.5%
Instructor 3.2%

Do you work as a Language Arts Teacher?

Language Arts Teacher Demographics

Gender

Female

68.2%

Male

20.3%

Unknown

11.5%
Ethnicity

White

63.9%

Hispanic or Latino

13.9%

Black or African American

12.9%

Asian

5.8%

Unknown

3.5%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

57.4%

French

10.5%

Japanese

4.7%

Chinese

4.3%

Arabic

3.2%

Mandarin

2.9%

Italian

2.9%

German

2.9%

Portuguese

2.2%

Polish

1.8%

Russian

1.4%

Hebrew

1.1%

Greek

1.1%

Hindi

0.7%

Korean

0.7%

Tagalog

0.7%

Swedish

0.4%

Turkish

0.4%

Cherokee

0.4%

Hmong

0.4%
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Language Arts Teacher Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

13.9%

Grand Canyon University

9.1%

Nova Southeastern University

8.5%

Walden University

8.2%

University of Central Florida

5.3%

University of South Florida

5.1%

Capella University

4.6%

Florida International University

4.2%

Florida State University

4.2%

Northern Arizona University

3.8%

Montclair State University

3.7%

University of North Carolina at Charlotte

3.7%

Arizona State University

3.6%

National Louis University

3.5%

University of Florida

3.4%

Florida Atlantic University

3.1%

National University

3.0%

Georgia State University

3.0%

Kent State University

3.0%

Liberty University

3.0%
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Majors

Education

17.8%

Elementary Education

16.5%

English

14.5%

Educational Leadership

10.7%

General Education, Specific Areas

6.8%

Curriculum And Instruction

5.1%

Secondary Education And Teaching

4.5%

Special Education

4.3%

Business

3.0%

School Counseling

2.5%

Communication

2.1%

Psychology

1.8%

Writing

1.6%

Educational Technology

1.6%

History

1.4%

Early Childhood Education

1.3%

Counseling Psychology

1.2%

Journalism

1.1%

Liberal Arts

1.1%

Interdisciplinary Studies

0.9%
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Degrees

Masters

47.9%

Bachelors

29.4%

Other

12.2%

Certificate

4.5%

Doctorate

4.1%

Associate

1.3%

License

0.5%

Diploma

0.2%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary
Average Yearly Salary
$51,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$34,000
Min 10%
$51,000
Median 50%
$51,000
Median 50%
$51,000
Median 50%
$51,000
Median 50%
$51,000
Median 50%
$51,000
Median 50%
$51,000
Median 50%
$75,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Baltimore Schools
Highest Paying City
Paterson, NJ
Highest Paying State
New Jersey
Avg Experience Level
3.4 years
How much does a Language Arts Teacher make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Language Arts Teacher in the United States is $51,195 per year or $25 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $34,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $75,000.

Real Language Arts Teacher Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Secondary Esol Language Arts School District of Palm Beach County Belle Glade, FL Dec 14, 2010 $74,245
Spanish Language Arts Teacher Boulder Valley School District Re 2 Boulder, CO May 16, 2012 $66,914
Spanish Language Arts Teacher Boulder Valley School District Re 2 Boulder, CO May 15, 2012 $66,914
Teacher, Language Arts Cambridge Public Schools Cambridge, MA Oct 01, 2009 $63,605
Teacher, Language Arts The Cambridge Enterprise Collaborative, Inc. Cambridge, MA Oct 01, 2009 $63,605
Language Arts Teacher Long Island Conser Albertson, NY Jan 28, 2013 $61,838
Language Arts Teacher Prince George's County Public Schools Greenbelt, MD Oct 01, 2009 $59,909
Chinese Language Arts and Humanities Teacher District of Columbia International School Washington, DC Jan 10, 2016 $57,523
Chinese Language Arts Teacher District of Columbia International School Washington, DC Aug 31, 2016 $56,973
Chinese Language Arts and Humanities Teacher District of Columbia International School Washington, DC Aug 16, 2014 $55,547 -
$58,968
Chinese Language Arts & Humanities Teachers District of Columbia International School Washington, DC Apr 29, 2016 $54,480 -
$58,968
Chinese Language Arts & Humanities Teachers District of Columbia International School Washington, DC Dec 13, 2016 $54,480 -
$58,968
Chinese Language Arts and Humanities Teacher District of Columbia International School Washington, DC Aug 16, 2015 $54,480 -
$58,968
Secondary Language Arts Teacher Cuba Independent Schools Cuba, NM Feb 01, 2011 $47,063
Language Arts Teacher Pinon Unified School District No. 4 Pinon, AZ Aug 06, 2015 $47,000
Language Arts Teacher Central Consolidated School District Shiprock, NM Aug 28, 2015 $46,600
Reading and Language Arts Teacher Caddo Parish School Board Shreveport, LA May 29, 2013 $46,230
Language Arts Teacher Camphill Special School, Inc. PA Sep 19, 2013 $45,560
Language Arts Teacher District School Board of Lake County, Florida Tavares, FL Aug 11, 2009 $45,175
Bilingual Language Arts Teacher Royal Live Oaks Academy Hardeeville, SC Mar 15, 2016 $45,000
Bilingual Language Arts Teacher Royal Live Oaks Academy-Ridgeland Hardeeville, SC Sep 15, 2015 $45,000
Language Arts Teacher-Middle School Vance Charter School Henderson, NC Jun 04, 2010 $39,454
Language Arts Teacher Vance Charter School Henderson, NC Oct 01, 2012 $39,454
5Th Grade Language Arts and Reading Teacher Imagine Charter Elementary at Camelback Inc. Phoenix, AZ Aug 14, 2014 $39,140
Elementary Dual Language-Language Arts Teacher Omaha Public Schools, District 0001 Omaha, NE Sep 01, 2014 $38,166
Ela-E Language Arts Secondary Teacher Denver Public Schools District 1 Denver, CO Jul 21, 2014 $38,117
Secondary Language Arts Teacher Ela-S Denver Public Schools District 1 Denver, CO Aug 18, 2014 $38,117

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Top Skills for A Language Arts Teacher

  1. Grade Level
  2. Classroom Management
  3. Curriculum Development
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Coordinated grade level community service activities, increasing student cultural awareness.
  • Developed strong classroom management that allowed students to work independently while pulling small groups for individual instruction.
  • Participated in curriculum development programs, staff development programs, faculty meetings and other school committee activities as required.
  • Designed and delivered standards-based units of study intended to motivate and facilitate student learning inside and outside the classroom.
  • Developed lesson plans and proactively taught innovative reading and communication skills.

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Top 10 Best States for Language Arts Teachers

  1. California
  2. Connecticut
  3. Alaska
  4. Massachusetts
  5. Michigan
  6. New York
  7. Rhode Island
  8. New Jersey
  9. Oregon
  10. Minnesota
  • (3,754 jobs)
  • (333 jobs)
  • (49 jobs)
  • (454 jobs)
  • (772 jobs)
  • (506 jobs)
  • (38 jobs)
  • (672 jobs)
  • (178 jobs)
  • (388 jobs)

Top Language Arts Teacher Employers

Jobs From Top Language Arts Teacher Employers

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