The sugar cone, the many new schoolmates, the classroom – most people remember the first day of school. Ideally, this day was the start of a successful academic and professional career. Whether that is the case depends to a large extent on the primary school teachers. The class teacher, in particular, is a formative figure for the I-males . If everything goes well, he not only teaches them arithmetic, writing and reading, but also how to enjoy learning.
However, the job of primary school teacher is not always easy. It should not only convey knowledge , but encourage each child individually and also take on educational tasks . However, the primary schools are attended by children with the most varied of skills and social requirements. In the course of the debate about inclusion also of children who would have previously attended special needs schools.
Despite many prejudices, the teaching life does not end when the school bell rings at noon: At home, the teachers have to prepare lessons and correct homework and classwork. They also need to keep parents informed of their children’s progress and problems. In order to be well prepared for all these tasks, a teaching degree is necessary.
Differences within Germany
In Germany, teacher training is a matter for the federal states. The study regulations for primary school teachers therefore differ from state to state . In Saxony, Bavaria and Hesse there is a teaching degree that is exclusively tailored to primary school. In other countries such as Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, primary and secondary school teaching are combined, which means that graduates can later teach at both types of school. In other countries such as Hamburg, on the other hand, primary school and secondary level I are trained simultaneously .
According to localcollegeexplorer, the structure of the study also differs . Some colleges offer more degree courses, on completion of the state exam at other universities, the financial statements are already on Bachelor and Master changed. Only those who have successfully passed the state examination or master’s degree are admitted to the final phase of training, the legal clerkship.
What do prospective primary school teachers learn during their studies?
The course provides the prospective teachers with pedagogical knowledge and specialist knowledge in the subjects they have chosen . At most universities, German or mathematics are compulsory subjects, and students can also choose other subjects such as art , religion or English .
The students not only learn grammar or fractions themselves, but also learn how to convey this content in a child-friendly manner. In addition, subjects such as school education, sociology or educational psychology are on the curriculum. In internships at elementary schools , students can put their knowledge into practice and design their first lessons themselves.
In the master’s degree programs or in the higher semesters of the state examination degree programs, students have the opportunity to deepen their specialist knowledge and didactic skills. They acquire further knowledge about the planning and implementation of the lessons and reflect on their own approach. The master’s or state examination is the prerequisite for admission to the legal traineeship .
Studying primary school teaching: requirements
First and foremost, prospective primary school teachers should enjoy working with children. In everyday working life, not only pedagogical skills and specialist knowledge are required , but also a lot of patience , empathy and a certain resistance to stress. Most elementary school teachers don’t just teach the subjects they studied. Therefore, the willingness to familiarize oneself with other specialist areas is required.
Legal clerkship and school service
After the first state examination or the master’s degree, the practical preparatory service follows. The so-called legal clerkship takes 18 to 24 months, depending on the federal state . During this time, the graduates teach largely independently at a primary school. A teacher is at their side as a guide.
In addition, the trainee lawyers are regularly checked in class visits. Parallel to the practical training, the graduates attend a study seminar where they continue to have lessons in pedagogy, didactics and methodology. The legal traineeship ends with the second state examination .
After that, most teachers go to school as civil servants on probationary periods or as employees . Depending on the course they have completed, they can teach at primary schools, lower secondary level, at secondary schools and also in boarding schools and student dormitories. Those who realize after completing their bachelor’s degree that elementary school may not be right for them can also take other master’s degrees in the pedagogical field.
Reasons for studying abroad
For anyone who wants to teach English, it makes sense in any case to spend one or more semesters in English-speaking countries . This way they get a real feel for the language.
But studying abroad is also worthwhile for everyone else , because:
- Students broaden their academic and personal horizons.
- They collect intercultural skills that can be valuable for later work: In view of the increasing number of children with a migration background in primary schools, it is helpful, for example, to learn to communicate across cultural differences.
- A stay abroad also trains soft skills such as organizational talent, flexibility and assertiveness.
- Studying abroad contributes to personal development.