COVID-19 UPDATE: We are open and continue to serve our students. Learn More about our health & safety plans.
Do you love working with young children? If you have a passion for caring for kids around their toddler years, a job as a toddler teacher could be the perfect career. Read on to learn more.
Toddler teachers provide care to children who are typically between the ages of 2 and 5. They're responsible for organizing a full range of activities throughout the day that are both entertaining and educational. They maintain a clean and healthy environment for children that's also safe for all their activities. Depending on the childcare setting and hours of care, toddler teachers may handle various responsibilities associated with meals, snacks, and naps.
Throughout their daily routines, toddler teachers will assist their charges with many important developmental activities. They will interact with toddlers to promote verbal and social development and help them learn to handle basic routines and scheduled activities. These teachers might assist with toilet training as well.
As a toddler teacher, you'll be responsible for understanding how a child's development progresses at every age. These educators and care givers may help screen for issues such as delayed speech or signs of autism. They can help parents identify and address behavioral problems and ensure that toddlers are on track for healthy development.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) doesn't maintain data on toddler teachers, but it does monitor the job outlook for preschool teachers, who have a similar job. According to the BLS, job growth for preschool teachers is expected to be 10 percent between 2016 and 2026. The BLS indicates that there's a growing demand for early childhood education from professional educators. This is a major contributing factor to the strong job growth anticipated in this field.
The BLS maintains data on childcare workers as well. In this occupation, job growth is projected to be about seven percent between 2016 and 2026. This is on par with the national average for all occupations. Demand is slightly lower for childcare in settings that don't emphasize education, as a preschool would. You may find that your best chance of landing secure employment as a toddler teacher is to seek out facilities with an organized curriculum that promotes skill development.
Toddler teachers can work in many different environments. This is a flexible career where you'll find job opportunities that range from caring for one or two children in a private residence to organizing a large program for dozens of toddlers in a child care center. A toddler teacher might work in a public or private preschool, with a Head Start program, or in family child care homes.
About 29 percent of childcare workers are self-employed. Many provide daycare in their own homes. A quarter of childcare workers are employed by child day care services. A higher percentage of preschool teachers work in child day care services, with about 57 percent employed in this type of environment. Another 18 percent of preschool teachers work with religious or similarly aligned organizations, and 17 percent work in elementary schools.
You'll typically enjoy standard weekday hours as a toddler teacher, particularly if you're working in an organized educational setting. This allows for evenings, weekends, and holidays off. Many programs also have summer vacation, following the schedule of the surrounding school district. Toddler teachers who provide child care may have extended hours, caring for children any time their parents are at work.
Most employers prefer some type of continuing education for toddler teachers. A strong background in education will help you stay competitive in this area. It's important to note that some states may have additional requirements for toddler teachers, particularly those who are working in a school environment. Check your state's licensing requirements to make sure you're prepared to meet any unique regulations in your area.
The Early Childhood Education Associate Degree from Bryant & Stratton College is an ideal choice if you're interested in a career as a toddler teacher. This degree program includes courses on creative and language arts for children, child growth and development, and health, safety, and nutrition for the young child. You'll learn how to plan curriculum, build strong family and community connections, and assess child behavior around the toddler years.
With the right background, you'll have the knowledge you need to best prepare toddlers for the next stages of their education, so they can have a successful experience in preschool, kindergarten, and beyond.
An AAS Early Childhood Education Degree will prepare you for various careers in childcare and education. Some job titles that you might want to look for include:
Broadening the scope of your search to include titles like these will increase your chances of finding employment as an educator and caregiver with toddler-age children.
Please note that BLS data is intended for informational purposes only. This isn't a guarantee of employment opportunities. Rather, it can give you a general idea of the opportunities that are anticipated in a chosen field.
For more information on the career options available to you in education as well as other fields, check out the degree insights section of our blog. There, you'll find information to help you plan for a successful future in your area of interest.