Kindergarten teachers are often charged with teaching to a multitude of knowledge levels, as some students enter kindergarten with basic skills while others are entering a classroom setting for the first time. A successful kindergarten teacher is able to assess each of her students’ needs and plan her group and individual curricula accordingly.
Kindergarten-aged children are testing social boundaries, many for the first time. An objective of a successful kindergarten teacher is to teach socially acceptable behavior in a way young children can comprehend. This is accomplished through sharing activities, learning to take turns, and respecting the privacy and belonging of others. It also includes instruction on acceptable and unacceptable language and physical behaviors, as well as learning skills related to compromise.
A successful kindergarten teacher has an objective of teaching basic reading skills to her students. This involves identifying and learning sight words, recognizing letters and sounds, and providing instruction through matching and sorting exercises. By the end of the school year, students should be able to read aloud from age and reading-level appropriate books and materials.
Teaching basic math skills is an objective reached through practices such as number recognition and learning minimally to count to 20, ideally to 100, and in increments of 2s, 5s and 10s. Students learn through grouping and sorting activities, playing math games, and through basic addition and subtraction exercises.
Successful kindergarten teachers teach their students how to reason, with an objective of helping them assess a situation and make a decision based on available information. Reasoning is taught through storytelling and role-playing activities.
Kindergarten students are becoming aware of themselves as individuals and learning how to navigate their own personalities in a setting away from parental supervision. A successful teacher has a goal of helping students learn about their own strengths, unique characteristics and skill sets.
Encouraging creativity and individual expression is an objective of successful kindergarten teachers. Schools that offer music, movement and art programs allow teachers to help students explore different forms of expression.
A kindergarten teacher should have a goal of assessing students’ age-appropriate developmental milestones including fine motor skills and achievement on test scores. Connecting with parents and discussing student progress can help achieve the objective of setting students on the right footing for their elementary school years.
- Point Park University: Kindergarten
- U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook: Kindergarten and Elementary School Teachers
- U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook: What Kindergarten and Elementary School Teachers Do
- Family Education: Kindergarten -- What Will They Learn?
- Great Schools: Your Kindergartner and Math
Lisa McQuerrey has been a business writer since 1987. In 1994, she launched a full-service marketing and communications firm. McQuerrey's work has garnered awards from the U.S. Small Business Administration, the International Association of Business Communicators and the Associated Press. She is also the author of several nonfiction trade publications, and, in 2012, had her first young-adult novel published by Glass Page Books.