Deciding you want to become a teacher is just the beginning of the journey towards making that career dream come true. Before you embark on any training or a path towards that goal, it is important to figure out which group of children you would most like to work with. It is fair to say that the vast majority of teachers only ever work with one age group. If you were to begin by teaching primary school children it would be very difficult to swap to become a secondary school teacher later on, and vice versa.
Primary school teachers focus on teaching pupils in primary schools between the ages of about 4 to 11. If you want to become a primary school teacher it is worth considering what this will involve. This will enable you to find out whether it would be the right fit for you.
Would you like to teach a range of subjects to your class?
If you become a primary school teacher you will be responsible for one class of pupils throughout the day. As such you will teach them a range of different things. You might spend some of the time concentrating on learning new words and their spellings, and then move on to basic maths. There will be lots of other topics and tasks to do as well, providing both you and the children you teach with plenty to do and learn about every day.
Some teachers prefer to focus on a specific subject. If this sounds more like you, you may be better suited to secondary schools. Here you can teach just one topic, whereas if you become a primary school teacher you can focus on a wide range of different subjects.
It is still normal to have a specialist subject you are particularly interested in
Some primary school teachers already have a degree in a particular topic, such as history or maths for example. While you would need such a degree to teach that same topic in secondary school, it will also come in useful when you want to become a primary school teacher. You may take extra responsibility for all matters pertaining to that subject at the primary school you work in.
As you can see, a primary school teacher will have a very different working day when compared to a secondary school teacher. This means you will need to decide whether you want to work with this group of children rather than those who are older. The more you understand about the requirements of each position, the easier it will be to choose the right group for you.
Working as a primary school teacher can be very rewarding. It means you are able to introduce pupils to different topics, some of which they will go on to study in more detail later in their school lives. You can have a formative effect on many of the pupils you teach, which is probably why the idea of becoming a primary school teacher appeals to so many would be teachers.