Personal development goals for teaching assistants
Teacher aides work with a classroom teacher to help provide individual attention and support for students. Job locations might include elementary public schools, charter schools or private schools. The Bureau of Labor Statistics anticipates a 15-percent increase in demand for teaching assistants from 2010 to 2020, which is near average compared to all other occupations. Developing a list of goals for elementary school teacher aides can help increase effectiveness in the classroom and promote individual professional development.
Elementary teacher aides can support the primary classroom teacher by assisting with or taking over preparation responsibilities. Setting the goal of minimizing a primary classroom teacher’s involvement with basic preparation, such as making photocopies or creating bulletin boards, frees the teacher’s time for more targeted goals, such as interacting directly with underperforming students, according to the Duke University Center for Child and Family Policy. Before assuming preparation responsibilities, elementary teacher aides should have a clear understanding of the primary teacher’s methods and expectations for materials and procedures. Understanding methodology and desired outcomes streamlines the process, syncing a teacher’s goals with the goals of her aide.
Having detailed knowledge of student background and educational needs should be included on a list of goals for elementary teacher aides. Rather than offering generalized support that might not be necessary, aides can tailor their strategies and resources to support the individual needs of their students. Some students might struggle with challenges, including autism spectrum disorder, Down syndrome or cerebral palsy, that affect their learning processes or ability to participate in the classroom. Other students might struggle with communication, problem-solving, computer literacy or behavior management. Teacher aides can consult with primary classroom teachers for background information, but can also set goals to create their own sets of notes and observations in order to fine-tune support.