Are you looking for a career where you get a chance to make a real difference in the lives of others on a daily basis? Do you have the grit, will, and patience to work with more than a dozen students every day? If yes then perhaps you should consider the job of a 5th-grade teacher.
Becoming a 5th-grade teacher is not just limited to academics. It means that you will be molding the future generation with the bits of wisdom you impart.
To excel in the job of a 5th-grade teacher, an individual must possess the following traits and qualities.
- A friendly personality
- Excellent communication skills (both oral and written)
- Possessing a calm and reassuring demeanor
- Being a team player
- Empathy, kindness, compassion and determination
- Strong listening and critical thinking skills
- Passion for the job itself and to make a difference
- Non-discriminatory outlook with a sense of humor
- Having the ability to work under pressure and stressful situations
- Adaptability and resilience
Educational Requirements for the job of a 5th-grade teacher :
To become a 5th-grade teacher, one has the following qualifications:
- A high school diploma or a GED
- Bachelor’s degree (which includes a teacher preparation program)
- Master’s degree specializing in education
To successfully get a job as a 5th-grade teacher, you must also continue with further training and certifications. These may include:
- Pass a basic skills exam and a subject area competency exam.
- Take the Praxis series exam conducted by the Educational Testing Services (ETS). Once you clear these, you can then apply to get a license for teaching.
- National Board Certification: This is considered an advanced credential and surpasses the state license.
Upon completing all these certifications, the National Education Association provides a teacher with certificates and recommendation letters which improves one’s chances of getting a well-paid job.
Duties and Responsibilities of a 5th grade teacher
Although being a 5th-grade teacher is nothing short of carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders. However, some of the essential duties and responsibilities include:
- Being familiar with your state’s benchmark and standards
- Create lesson plans in compliance with these benchmarks and standards. Modifying these lesson plans based on students’ progress and interest throughout the year
- Utilize various curriculum resources. Additionally, teachers should also integrate goals, objectives, and competencies into their lesson plans.
- Plan, prepare and deliver lessons and other instructional activities.
- Assess students periodically and find new ways to practice all-inclusive teaching methodologies.
- Maintain detailed files for every student. A teacher must also update these files throughout the year to record the student’s progress throughout the academic year.
- Collect and grade assignments, quizzes and tests. Periodically sharing the results with both the children and the parents and finding ways to help students excel even more.
- Keep an up-to-date record of student grade books.
- Performing other administrative duties
- Part of the job of a 5th-grade teacher also includes participating in any ongoing training, seminars and other relevant certifications
- Communicate academic goals and expectations to students.
- Develop and maintain positive interpersonal relationships
- Communicate with parents regularly. This becomes especially important if the student just moved, needs extra help outside the classroom or is generally struggling to keep up with the rest of the classmates.
- Provide instructions outlining students health and safety
- Display professional behavior and demeanor. This may include honesty, impartiality, courtesy, respect, cultural awareness and responsibility.
- Write grant proposals to get funding for further research.
- Tutor students (if and when required)
- Keep classrooms engaged in group activities while still working one-on-one with students to assess them.
Work Schedule of a 5th grade teacher
Working as a teacher, one can expect to work from 7 am till 3.30 pm throughout the week. Some schools require teachers to come in earlier and stay back for an hour after all students have left. A 5th-grade teacher typically has their classrooms, which they are expected to arrange and decorate.
Unlike other professions, the job of a 5th-grade teacher includes teaching around 40 weeks a year with summer and winter breaks. However, most schools are mandated by the state to have summer programs whereby teachers use their holidays to teach the students in summer school.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a 5th-grade teacher earns a yearly income of $55,790 on average. However, the salary ranges from $$39,080 to $$95,380. However, this depends on where a teacher works (public or private school), their education and experience, and their geographical location.