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Early years teacher: Job description

Early years, or nursery, teachers work in pre-school, nursery and reception classes with children aged between three and five. They plan and carry out activities in line with the requirements of the early years foundation stage (EYFS). This involves developing work schemes and lessons plans to motivate children and imaginatively using resources to help them learn.

Early years teachers develop the social and communication skills of children and provide a safe and secure environment in which the child can learn. They build and maintain relationships with parents/guardians to further support pupils as well as operate within multi-agency networks to ensure the correct support is available.

Early years teachers record observations and summarise the children's achievements. They focus on optimum child development and preparation for a successful transition to primary school education.

Typical work activities

Early years teachers teach all areas of the foundation stage, which is focused on helping children to achieve early learning goals. Work carried out includes:

  • motivating and stimulating children's learning abilities, often encouraging learning through experience;
  • providing pastoral care and support to children and providing them with a secure environment to learn;
  • developing and producing visual aids and teaching resources;
  • organising learning materials and resources and making imaginative use of resources;
  • assisting with the development of children's personal/social and language abilities;
  • supporting the development of children's basic skills, including physical coordination, speech and communication;
  • encouraging children's mathematical and creative development through stories, songs, games, drawing and imaginative play;
  • developing children's curiosity and knowledge;
  • working with others, including teaching assistants and/or nursery nurses as well as volunteer helpers, to plan and coordinate work both indoors and outdoors;
  • sharing knowledge gained with other practitioners and parents;
  • observing, assessing and recording each child's progress;
  • attending in-service training;
  • ensuring the health and safety of children and staff is maintained during all activities, both inside and outside the nursery/school;
  • keeping up to date with changes in the curriculum and developments in best practice.

Some early years/nursery teachers make home visits prior to a child starting nursery/school and, where appropriate, might also visit providers of pre-school care, such as day nurseries.

 
 
AGCAS
Written by AGCAS editors
Date: 
August 2013
 

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