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What are the requirements to become a Teacher Assistant?

My name is Jozlyn Johnson i will be turning 18 on Monday and i am interested in becoming a Teacher Assistant for any school. I look at movies that has teacher assistants and i want too become one. #teacher #school #teaching #student

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Doc’s Answer

Jozlyn a Teaching Assistant (TA), sometimes called a teacher's aide, teacher assistant, or paraprofessional, helps teachers by providing essential support in and outside the classroom setting. A teacher’s assistant reports to a lead teacher and is responsible for helping the lead teacher run classes smoothly by taking on common classroom tasks at the lead teacher’s direction. The everyday duties of an assistant teacher include performing clerical duties like taking attendance, grading tests and homework, and other record-keeping and instruction tasks. They help monitor students’ behavior in the classroom, hallways, cafeteria, playground, and on school trips. Teacher assistants work in public school systems, private schools, and childcare facilities. They could also work with specific groups of students. Teacher’s assistants should possess patience, a joy for working with children, a willingness to follow instructions and work in a support role,, and excellent communication skills – both oral and written. Prospective teaching assistants who wish to enter a formal education program have several options to choose from (some of which are available online). Some of the more common paths include a teacher's aide certificate or associate degrees in paraprofessional education or child development.

Teacher's aide certificate programs typically last less than one year and provide the same core curriculum of an associate's degree without any additional liberal arts courses. Courses in these teacher's assistant programs include psychology, physical education, speech communication and an introduction to education. Such programs can be found in various nationally-accredited colleges or universities.

Some community colleges also offer an associate's degree in paraprofessional education designed to train teacher's aides. Aspiring teacher's aides can choose to concentrate their studies in areas such as developmental disabilities or learning. Courses in a teacher's aide associate degree program often include sign language, developmental disabilities, elementary education, child development and educational psychology.

Child development associate degree programs are another common path for those wishing to pursue a career as a teacher's aide. An associate degree in child development helps to prepare students for teacher's aide positions in daycare centers and organizations that work with children. Courses in a child development degree program often include nutrition, safety, community relations and family relations.

Hope this was helpful Jozlyn
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Tim’s Answer

Being a TA has it's own rewards if you are someone who enjoys making a difference in a child's life. Most positions like this, sometimes called paraprofessionals, require a two-year associates degree from a community College. I work in special education which has many specialties like behavioral intervention, learning development and special needs. I wish you luck in your pursuits.
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Lyndsay’s Answer

Typically there aren't many requirements for being a TA. Here are some jobs available in VA:

Also, look into substitute teaching jobs in VA. There are many jobs available for unlicensed classroom workers. Where I live, the paraprofessional assistants need no training to sub and make the same amount as a licensed substitute teacher.
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Sonya’s Answer

A teaching assistant, sometimes called a teacher's aide, teacher assistant, or paraprofessional, helps teachers by providing essential support in and outside the classroom setting. They work in various educational environments, though most often teaching assistants can be found in elementary schools.

Teacher assistants work in public school systems, private schools, and childcare facilities. They could also work with specific groups of students. For instance, you may be interested in becoming a kindergarten teacher assistant or work with students enrolled in special education programs.

Teacher assistants have some basic education and certification requirements they need to meet to work in this role. We'll examine the requirements to become an education paraprofessional in detail here.

Teacher Assistant Education Requirements
The path to become a teacher assistant differs from that of a teacher because teacher assistants are usually not required to have a 4-year degree. Exact educational requirements vary slightly by state or for certain work settings - for example, a high school diploma may be the only requirement to work as a teaching assistant in some areas, but you may have to complete some college-level coursework, obtain a 2-year degree, or earn certification in other states.

Some state specific examples are:

To work as a TA in Rhode Island you need to complete an approved teacher assistant training program and either possess a 2-year degree or pass an exam.
In Minnesota, you need to meet a specific combination of education and experience requirements. If you only have a high school diploma, you'll need to complete 12 credit hours of related college courses and 2,080 hours of work experience, but if you hold the Child Development Associate credential or have a relevant 2-year degree, no additional experience is needed.
If you are interested in working in a Title I school (specific schools that receive federal funding and where at least 40% of students come from low-income families) in any state, you are required to have at least a two-year degree and certification as a teacher assistant. Common associate's degree programs include those in early childhood education, paraprofessional education, or childhood development.

Teacher Assistant Certification
Certification also may be a requirement to work in your specific state or school district. Certification is a credential you earn from a state or organization, and it usually requires passing an exam. The requirements for earning your certification vary among the states that require it. For example, check out the certification requirements for two such states:

New York: Candidates for Level I Teacher Assistant certification in New York must apply and complete all the following steps:

Have a high school diploma, GED, or the educational equivalent
Pass the New York State exam, the New York State Assessment of Teaching Assistant Skills
Complete 3 training workshops: Child Abuse Identification; School Violence Intervention and Protection; Training in Harassment, Bullying, Cyberbullying, and Discrimination in Schools
Pass a fingerprint clearance
Illinois: All teaching assistants must obtain a paraprofessional license, which is valid for 5 years. Individuals must be at least 19 years old and must meet one of the following requirements in order to obtain a license:

Have an associate's degree or higher
Complete 60 hours of coursework
Have a high school diploma or GED equivalent and minimum score of 460 on the ETS ParaPro Test, which is a general aptitude test to assess your knowledge and skills pertaining to the role of a teacher's assistant
Have a high school diploma or GED equivalent, a minimum score of 4 for Applied Mathematics/Applied math, and a minimum score of 4 for Reading for Information/Workplace Documents on the ACT Work Keys Test
For more information about specific requirements for teacher assistant certification in your state, you'll want to check with your state's Department of Education.

Teacher's Aide Certificate Programs
A teacher's aide certificate program is designed to equip you with the training and education needed to support the lead teacher in a classroom setting and help students with their academic needs. These programs are found at both community colleges and universities and prepare you to work in early childhood education programs or schools - or to transfer to a 4-year academic program.

The courses for a teacher's aide certificate program are spread out over 1-2 years. The curriculum covers a variety of topics related to childhood education and working with young students. Some common course topics include:

Childhood growth and development
Classroom observation and assessment
Educating and guiding young children
Working with special populations and children with special needs
Creative arts for early childhood education
Early childhood literacy
Often teacher assistant programs require you to take a capstone course or pass an exam, which allows you demonstrate that you have acquired the knowledge and skills needed to work as a teacher assistant.

The WorkKeys Proficiency Certificate for Teacher Assistants is another certificate program option that is used by schools in 19 states: Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Texas. This certificate program allows teacher assistants in Title I elementary schools the opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge and skills set through testing and on-the-job observation that reflects what is learned in a typical 2-year postsecondary program.

Teacher Assistant Certification Online
ITeacher's assistant certification - the professional credential you'd typically test for - doesn't usually have an online option. However, you can enroll in an online teacher assistant certificate or diploma program, which is the academic path to becoming a TA.

An online program may be ideal for those who are currently working full-time or have other obligations that prevent them from being able to attend traditional classes. These programs typically take a couple months to a year to complete, and while some programs have all their instruction online; others may require some in-classroom instruction in addition to the online coursework, while some may require prospective TA's to complete supervised time in an approved setting.

It should be noted though that currently there are no online degrees for special education teacher assistants.

Preschool Teacher Assistant Requirements
A preschool teacher assistant usually works with children that are 5 years of age or younger in a school, day care, or child development facility. A high school diploma is typically the minimum education requirement for preschool teacher assistants, though there are often more job opportunities for those who have some postsecondary training or a degree in childhood development or early childhood education. Experience working with young children is often required, and your employer could require a criminal background check. Some states or school districts may also require additional education or training, such as CPR for infants and children.

If you choose to pursue an associate degree or teacher assistant certificate program, it's important to note that some schools offer the option to specialize in childhood development or early childhood education. This specialization is a great way to prepare someone for working with young children and students as a preschool teacher assistant. Examples of courses in early childhood development programs include:

Early childhood education
Child psychology
Child care techniques
There are some federal and state programs that have set qualifications for preschool teacher assistants. If working at a Title I school or program, then a two-year associate's degree is also required.

Special Education Teacher Assistant Requirements
A special education teacher assistant can work in a regular classroom or in a classroom exclusively for students with special needs. A high school diploma or the equivalent education is a minimum requirement; however, school districts often hire special education teacher assistants who have some college credits, strong communication and interpersonal skills, and the abilities to:

Assess students' needs and evaluate what they need to be successful
Support physically disabled students in daily tasks, such as using the restroom or eating
Adapting lessons to the specific needs of students
Manage and organize a classroom
Some school systems or districts require additional training for those who are working with students with special needs. You may be required to pass a skills test to demonstrate your ability to bend, stretch, squat, and lift as these movements may be needed when assisting students with physical disabilities.

It's important to note again that if you are working at a Title I school or program, a two-year associate degree is also required.