What does a primary teacher do?
Teaching is one of the most varied and satisfying jobs out there. The role of the primary school teacher encompasses many aspects. Primary teachers are responsible for creating a positive learning environment, providing a pillar of support to K-6 students, and sparking their quest for knowledge. Teachers equip students with a range of basic numeracy, literacy, science and creative skills, to ensure they have a solid foundation of knowledge from which to build upon once they reach high school. Duties of a primary school teacher include creating lesson plans, marking and grading work, ensuring the safety and wellbeing of students in the classroom, and providing ongoing feedback to facilitate the development of young minds.
- Creating lesson plans
- Support students as they learn
- Teach the K-6 curriculum
- Maintain a high level of classroom discipline
What skills do I need to be a primary teacher?
The skills a primary teacher requires are adaptable approach across the entire education sector. It is hugely important that you understand the needs of your students, and you provide feedback in a constructive way that doesn't harm their self-esteem. You need to be organised and concise, so that you can provide students with meaningful tasks in appropriate contexts and timeframes. Above all else you need to be enthusiastic about your job and creative in your lessons. Teaching is a passion, and helping young minds learn should be your biggest priority.
- Patience and understanding
- Creative, flexible and enthusiastic
- Highly organised
- Passionate about education
- Able to communicate clearly and concisely
The beauty of primary teaching is that the roles can vary and there are positions available in many different age ranges and at different academic levels. There is also a lot of career growth on offer, with upper management positions for those who are particularly career-driven.
Specialist primary teacher (music, art or PDHPE)
Teacher librarian – primary
Primary school principal
Study pathways for primary teachers
To become a primary teacher, a tertiary qualification in primary or early childhood education is required. You will also need to have the ability to adapt and grow.
Vocational training gets you started in the education industry, and qualifies you to work as a teacher’s aide or in other education support roles.
By studying an undergraduate degree in education and specialising in primary teaching, you will be on your way to working as a qualified primary teacher.
Pursue high-level employment options by specialising in a range of different teaching niches.
To become a fully qualified primary teacher, you need to become registered in your state. You can find out more in the resources section.
Getting a job after graduation
Put your training to good use and get the best professional head start in your primary teaching career. Take a look at our sample resume and cover letter and put your best foot forward when you apply for teaching jobs.
Job Prospects and Salaries
There has never a better time to become a primary school teacher. With jobs available all over Australia, and employment opportunities at all levels, a career in education offers strong future growth.