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Become A Language Arts Teacher

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Working As A Language Arts 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

  • $51,213

    Average Salary

What Does A Language Arts 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 Language Arts 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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Language Arts Teacher Jobs

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Language Arts Teacher Career Paths

Language Arts Teacher
Adjunct Professor Professor Adjunct Instructor
Academic Dean
10 Yearsyrs
Math Teacher Instructor ESL Instructor
Academic Director
8 Yearsyrs
Social Studies Teacher Special Education Teacher
Assistant Principal
10 Yearsyrs
Lead Teacher Site Coordinator Youth Director
Children's Ministries Director
6 Yearsyrs
6th Grade Teacher Math Teacher Assistant Principal
Curriculum Director
9 Yearsyrs
Assistant Principal Adjunct Instructor Chairperson
Dean
5 Yearsyrs
Special Education Teacher Educator Instructor
Department Chairperson
7 Yearsyrs
Assistant Principal Adjunct Professor
Director Of Instruction
7 Yearsyrs
Reading Teacher 2nd Grade Teacher Lead Teacher
Director Of Preschool
7 Yearsyrs
Reading Teacher Kindergarten Teacher Special Education Teacher
Director Of Special Education
11 Yearsyrs
Adjunct Instructor Instructor Lead Teacher
Director Of Teacher Education
5 Yearsyrs
Math Teacher Lead Teacher Education Coordinator
Education Program Manager
7 Yearsyrs
2nd Grade Teacher Lead Teacher Education Coordinator
Educational Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Social Studies Teacher Assistant Principal
Elementary School Principal
12 Yearsyrs
Coach Physical Education Teacher Assistant Principal
High School Principal
11 Yearsyrs
Coach Teacher And Coach Assistant Principal
Middle School Principal
12 Yearsyrs
Adjunct Instructor Department Chairperson Assistant Principal
School Director
7 Yearsyrs
Special Education Teacher Assistant Principal
School Principal
11 Yearsyrs
2nd Grade Teacher Special Education Teacher Assistant Principal
Vice Principal
9 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Language Arts Teacher?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Teacher 3.8 years
2nd Grade Teacher 3.2 years
Literature Teacher 3.2 years
Language Teacher 2.8 years
8th Grade Teacher 2.6 years
6th Grade Teacher 2.6 years
5th Grade Teacher 2.6 years
Reading Teacher 2.5 years
4th Grade Teacher 2.4 years
7th Grade Teacher 2.1 years
Top Employers Before
Teacher 29.0%
Internship 4.3%
Tutor 3.2%
Instructor 2.8%
Volunteer 1.9%
Top Employers After
Teacher 29.6%
Principal 4.2%
Tutor 3.4%
Coach 3.3%
Instructor 3.2%
Internship 2.2%
Director 2.2%

Do you work as a Language Arts Teacher?

Language Arts Teacher Demographics

Gender

Female

76.3%

Male

21.7%

Unknown

1.9%
Ethnicity

White

63.7%

Hispanic or Latino

13.5%

Black or African American

12.8%

Asian

6.2%

Unknown

3.7%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

55.5%

French

10.0%

Japanese

5.7%

Chinese

4.8%

Mandarin

3.8%

Arabic

3.3%

Italian

2.4%

Portuguese

2.4%

German

2.4%

Polish

1.9%

Russian

1.4%

Greek

1.4%

Korean

1.0%

Hebrew

1.0%

Turkish

0.5%

Cherokee

0.5%

Hindi

0.5%

Dutch

0.5%

Hawaiian

0.5%

Ukrainian

0.5%
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Language Arts Teacher Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

14.4%

Grand Canyon University

12.4%

Walden University

8.6%

Nova Southeastern University

8.0%

University of Central Florida

5.4%

Capella University

4.2%

Montclair State University

4.2%

University of North Carolina at Charlotte

4.0%

University of South Florida

3.6%

Northern Arizona University

3.6%

University of Florida

3.4%

Liberty University

3.4%

University of Southern Mississippi

3.2%

Florida International University

3.2%

University of Georgia

3.2%

National Louis University

3.2%

Kean University

3.0%

DePaul University

3.0%

Florida State University

3.0%

Western Michigan University

3.0%
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Majors

Education

17.5%

Elementary Education

16.2%

English

14.0%

Educational Leadership

11.3%

General Education, Specific Areas

5.8%

Curriculum And Instruction

5.3%

Secondary Education And Teaching

4.9%

Special Education

4.3%

Business

2.7%

School Counseling

2.5%

Communication

2.5%

Writing

2.0%

Psychology

1.8%

Educational Technology

1.7%

Early Childhood Education

1.4%

Liberal Arts

1.3%

Journalism

1.3%

History

1.2%

Teaching English As A Second Language

1.1%

Counseling Psychology

1.0%
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Degrees

Masters

49.0%

Bachelors

27.6%

Other

12.5%

Doctorate

4.7%

Certificate

4.4%

Associate

1.4%

License

0.3%

Diploma

0.1%
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Part Time
Internship
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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 and Humanities Teacher District of Columbia International School Washington, DC Aug 16, 2015 $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 & Humanities Teachers District of Columbia International School Washington, DC Apr 29, 2016 $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

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  1. Classroom Management
  2. Curriculum
  3. Grade Level
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Planned and implemented lessons that involved technology to vary instructional techniques that resulted in effective classroom management and increased student focus.
  • Led Literacy Department with the responsibility of educating and collaborating with peers to create curriculum designs to provide effective instruction.
  • Collaborated with District Literacy Specialist to create strategies to improve reading fluency and comprehension across grade levels.
  • Created and presented interactive lesson plans designed to facilitate higher student performance on the Colorado statewide exams.
  • Designed and delivered standards-based units of study intended to motivate and facilitate student learning inside and outside the classroom.

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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

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Jobs From Top Language Arts Teacher Employers

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