Preschool Teachers Except Special Education

What is a Preschool Teacher?

Preschool teachers are responsible for educating and caring for young children, typically between the ages of three and five. During their preschool years, children learn their numbers, letters, shapes, and colors. They hone fine motor skills through crafts and sensory play and develop strong gross motor skills through active play, such as dancing and games.

Preschool is also an important time for developing social skills. Through their time in preschool, children learn how to relate to other children in their age range. They develop independence from their parents and learn how to interact with other adults and caregivers on a regular basis. Preschool prepares children for kindergarten and the rest of their elementary school experience. By participating in predictable daily routines and exploring a variety of key skills and topics, preschoolers are able to gain the knowledge they need to advance successfully throughout their elementary school experience.

Job Responsibilities

  • Guiding children through educational activities 
  • Familiarizing children with colors, shapes, numbers, and the alphabet 
  • Planning a daily, weekly, and monthly curriculum 
  • Working with children one-on-one and in groups 
  • Assisting children with conflict resolution 
  • Maintaining daily routines 
  • Monitoring children for signs of developmental problems 
  • Maintaining records of students’ education and progress 
  • Overseeing games and recess 
  • Establishing classroom rules and strategies for discipline 
  • Promoting social development 
  • Communicating with parents and other caregivers 
  • Assisting children with basic life skills such as hand washing 
  • Serving snacks and meals 
  • Organizing games 

What is the Job Outlook for Preschool Teachers?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, about 151,000 openings for teacher assistants are projected each year, on average, over the decade. Most of those openings are expected to result from the need to replace workers who transfer to different occupations or exit the labor force, such as to retire.

Where do Preschool Teachers Work?

Preschool teachers can work in a variety of childcare and education facilities. According to the BLS, 57 percent of preschool teachers work in child day care services. Another 18 percent are employed by religious, grantmaking, civic, professional, and other similar organizations. Seventeen percent work in schools, while three percent work for individual and family services. 

Preschool teachers can work anywhere that child care is provided. This might be a Pre-K program at a public elementary school, an organized preschool class at a child care center, or a preschool group at a church. Consider a variety of childcare settings when you’re looking for a position as a preschool teacher.

What Education is Required for a Preschool Teacher?

Educational requirements for preschool teachers vary by state and facility. However, most require that these educators have a minimum of an associate’s degree. The Early Childhood Education Associate of Applied Science degree at Bryant & Stratton College is an ideal choice for prospective educators. This program includes courses including early childhood program administration, child growth & development, curriculum planning & assessment, creative & language arts for children, and more.

What Can I Do with an AAS Early Childhood Education Degree?

An AAS Early Childhood Education degree can prepare you for a variety of jobs working with young children. Preschool teachers and other childcare providers can go by many names. You may way to include the following job titles in your search: 

  • Early childhood teacher 
  • Group teacher 
  • Pre-kindergarten teacher 
  • Preschool teacher 
  • Lead teacher 
  • Center director 
  • Program director 
  • Toddler teacher 
  • Childcare provider 

Additional Training/Requirements

Though you need a bachelor’s degree to teach kindergarten and higher grade levels, you can often work with younger children in various class and group settings with your AAS Early Childhood Education degree. 

The Council for Professional Recognition has specific requirements for the Child Development Associate credentialing process in addition to the formal education components included in these programs.  A career in the field of Early Childhood Education may involve meeting certain licensing, training and other requirements that can vary by vocation and state.  Bryant & Stratton College recommends all applicants check with the licensing agency in their state for specific requirements *.  The Bryant & Stratton College Early Childhood Education programs involve an early childhood practice experience which may be completed within a live childcare environment.  All applicants to either Early Childhood program should be aware that employers may consider numerous factors when determining eligibility or suitability for employment including, but not limited to, criminal background screening, U.S. citizenship, state residency, physical and psychological health, age and military discharge information.  A criminal conviction and/or record of certain other conduct may prevent or hinder a student’s completion of their required practice experience or a graduate’s employment in the field of Early Childhood Education.  The enrolling applicant has been apprised of these matters and enrolls in this program with full understanding of the same. 

* Virginia residents should refer to licensure regulations for school personnel at the following government site: . Teacher candidates will find additional information at the Virginia Department of Education at the following address: Virginia Department of Education, James Monroe Building, 101 N. 14th Street, Richmond, VA  23219. For more information please visit: 

For more information on the education industry, check out the online education section of our blog. You’ll get valuable insights into the potential available with a career as a preschool teacher or other educator. 

While these projections can help career-minded people evaluate potential employment fields, it is important to note that job market data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Handbook is only intended to provide insight on occupational opportunities. It should not be construed as a guarantee of salary or job title. Neither BLS nor Bryant & Stratton College can guarantee employment in any field.

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