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Become A Lead Instructor

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Working As A Lead Instructor

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

  • Make Decisions

  • Stressful

  • $117,233

    Average Salary

What Does A Lead Instructor 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 Lead Instructor

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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Lead Instructor Demographics

Gender

Male

51.8%

Female

46.1%

Unknown

2.1%
Ethnicity

White

60.7%

Hispanic or Latino

15.5%

Black or African American

11.6%

Asian

8.1%

Unknown

4.1%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

50.4%

French

10.1%

Chinese

5.2%

Mandarin

4.0%

Russian

3.7%

Arabic

3.7%

German

3.5%

Korean

3.0%

Italian

3.0%

Japanese

3.0%

Portuguese

2.0%

Hindi

1.5%

Greek

1.5%

Vietnamese

1.2%

Carrier

1.0%

Hebrew

1.0%

Cantonese

0.7%

Polish

0.7%

Czech

0.5%

Persian

0.5%
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Lead Instructor Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

19.7%

University of Texas at San Antonio

7.4%

Capella University

6.0%

Grand Canyon University

5.3%

Clemson University

4.8%

Walden University

4.8%

University of North Texas

4.6%

Virginia Commonwealth University

4.5%

Ashford University

4.5%

American University

3.9%

Northern Arizona University

3.8%

Texas A&M University

3.8%

Georgia State University

3.8%

Iowa State University

3.6%

Liberty University

3.4%

Wayne State University

3.4%

University of North Carolina at Greensboro

3.4%

University of California - Riverside

3.3%

Community College of the Air Force

3.1%

University of Florida

3.1%
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Majors

Business

16.3%

Education

8.5%

Psychology

7.1%

Biology

6.6%

Elementary Education

6.6%

Nursing

6.1%

Criminal Justice

5.4%

Educational Leadership

4.7%

English

4.2%

Management

4.2%

Computer Science

3.9%

Communication

3.5%

Political Science

3.5%

Mathematics

3.4%

Kinesiology

2.9%

Accounting

2.9%

Liberal Arts

2.8%

Chemistry

2.6%

General Education, Specific Areas

2.6%

Sociology

2.4%
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Degrees

Bachelors

41.2%

Masters

25.8%

Other

16.9%

Associate

6.8%

Doctorate

5.0%

Certificate

3.3%

Diploma

0.7%

License

0.4%
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Real Lead Instructor Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Lead Instructor, Graduate Fashion Stephens Institute San Francisco, CA Sep 30, 2010 $120,000
Lead Instructor, Ibwave Certification Program Corning Optical Communications LLC Hickory, NC Nov 30, 2015 $82,680
Lead Instructor, Ibwave Certification Program Corning Optical Communications LLC Hickory, NC May 02, 2016 $82,680 -
$107,640
Principal Instructional Leader Appletree Early Learning Public Charter School Washington, DC Feb 18, 2014 $71,640
Lead Java & .NET Instructor Grand Circus Detroit LLC Detroit, MI Jun 09, 2016 $70,000
Lead Instructor-Well Testing Express Energy Services Operating, L.P. Houston, TX Oct 01, 2012 $70,000
Lead Instructor-Well Testing Express Energy Services Operating, LP Houston, TX Sep 07, 2013 $67,287 -
$70,000
Lead Instructor GE Medical Systems, Inc. Pewaukee, WI Jul 19, 2010 $66,000 -
$74,000
Lead Instructor-Electrical/Electronics Instrumentation Oklahoma State University Okmulgee, OK Aug 25, 2015 $64,710
Math Instructional Leader Woodland Christian School Woodland, CA Aug 08, 2012 $64,293
Lead Stem Instructor Mindframe Education Inc. Ashburn, VA Mar 09, 2016 $61,000
Lead Instructor Electrical/Electronics Instrumenta Oklahoma State University-Institute of Technolog Okmulgee, OK Feb 02, 2016 $56,660
Lead Instructor Electrical/Electronics Instrumenta Oklahoma State University-Institute of Technolog Okmulgee, OK Jan 02, 2016 $56,660
Content Leader/Instructional Coord., Science State of Tn Achievement School Distrcti Memphis, TN Dec 01, 2014 $48,755 -
$53,000
Math Instructional Leader Woodland Christian School Woodland, CA Aug 16, 2012 $48,648
Lead Instructor Indiana University Bloomington, IN May 30, 2013 $48,272
Math Instructional Leader Mater Academy of International Studies Miami, FL Dec 15, 2014 $45,594
Lead Instructor Anatomy and Physiology Tri_State Institute Birmingham, AL Jan 01, 2012 $45,000
Lead Instructor, Curriculum Development Specialist Columbus School of Chinese Columbus, OH Jun 09, 2016 $44,871
Lead Instructor Idaho State Department of Education Boise, ID Aug 19, 2013 $44,057
Lead Instructor Idaho State Department of Education Boise, ID Aug 07, 2011 $44,057

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Top Skills for A Lead Instructor

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  1. Classroom Management
  2. Curriculum
  3. Lesson Plans
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Provide instructors with general performance coaching for the purpose of effective classroom management an improved student achievement.
  • Developed and implemented introductory electronics curriculum.
  • Developed learning objectives, lesson plans, prepared test items and maintained technical publication library.
  • Implement a positive reinforced behavior management program Create a nurturing, safe environment for kindergarten students.
  • Coordinated physical security protective measures and procedures and assures that appropriate data is captured in centralized database.

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Top 10 Best States for Lead Instructors

  1. New York
  2. Alaska
  3. Oregon
  4. District of Columbia
  5. Massachusetts
  6. Rhode Island
  7. California
  8. Michigan
  9. Connecticut
  10. Pennsylvania
  • (340 jobs)
  • (31 jobs)
  • (139 jobs)
  • (47 jobs)
  • (145 jobs)
  • (17 jobs)
  • (598 jobs)
  • (160 jobs)
  • (55 jobs)
  • (250 jobs)

Top Lead Instructor Employers

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Jobs From Top Lead Instructor Employers

Lead Instructor Videos

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UCLA Intro Psych: A Day in the Life of Grace Hong

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