Teaching Assistant

While the role and the responsibilities of a teaching assistant can vary between different schools and institutions, there are some typical responsibilities that each teaching assistant shares. Regardless of which school you may wish to work with, there will be some core responsibilities you will be in charge of. Below are some of the descriptions you may find when it comes to a teaching assistant position.
• Working with groups of students. Despite what age the students are, you may be responsible for working with them. Teaching assistants are often given the duty to help pupils who are in need of additional tutoring or help. There may be various reasons why students may need the extra help. For example, English may not be their first language or they may have trouble grasping the concept of certain subjects. It will be up to you to help them understand the context or material of the lesson. Sometimes you may need to just help a student individually because they do not learn well in group setting. Regardless of the issue, you will have to be able to work well with groups of students and communicate clearly so they understand the material they are trying to learn.
• Prepping or setting up the classroom for lessons. As a teaching assistant you may be responsible for properly setting up the classroom for lessons. This can be a variety of duties including photocopying sheets, prepping tables or computers for the certain lesson, rearranging the class if there is a certain activity the class is doing, the list can go on. You need to make sure you work quickly and efficiently so the prep doesn’t cut into the lessons themselves.
• Being a support system for students. Some students will have learning disabilities that will need to be addressed. You will play a role by being their support system and give them the special attention they need in order to keep up with the curriculum. Some students may even be physically disabled and will need assistance or aid to get around the school grounds. It can prove to be very overwhelming for a teacher to be in charge of a large class and also making sure to help the physically disable student so it is your responsibility to help her in any way possible.
• Chaperoning at events or school trips. Many times parents will not be able to take the time off to chaperone on a school trip or event so it will be your responsibility to watch over the students during these times. You also must ensure that the students are absorbing the lessons they are learning on this trip and can apply it to the classroom later.
• Picking up after students in the classroom. While there are janitors to clean up the big messes, you will have to take the time to keep the classroom organized. This means you may need to do some filing or some tidying up. This ensures less distractions for the students and an optimal learning space.
Sources:
1. https://www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storyCode=6166868
2. http://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/25-9041.00

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