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8 traits of a successful teaching assistant

The teaching assistant role is a rewarding position that allows you to work with pupils and gain invaluable experience in a classroom environment. Due to the variety of work involved in the role, the suitable candidate needs to possess many different traits and skills.

If you’re interested in becoming a teaching assistant, ask yourself whether you have what it takes by reading this month’s article. Here are the top eight qualities you need to become a successful teaching assistant.

1. A passion for working with children

This may seem obvious, but the number one trait you need to make it as a teaching assistant is a genuine passion for helping children succeed. You’ll be working with all different types of children with all different abilities, so you need to be adaptable to their specific needs..

2. Understand how children develop and learn

You’ll need more than just a passion if you hope to become a successful teaching assistant. You’ll also need to recognise when your pupils need help and understand how best to help them. Ideally, you’d need a thorough understanding of educational, learning and development theories. 

3. Ability to work in a team

Even if you’re the sole teaching assistant in the classroom, you’ll still be working as part of a team with the teacher and as a part of a wider team with the rest of the school staff.

You’ll need to be able to adopt a good relationship with those you are working with. You must be on the same page so that you can work in tandem to give your pupils the best education possible.

4. Strong communication skills

You’ll need the ability to communicate effectively and adapt your communication style depending on who you are talking to. Not only will you need to be able to explain things clearly and concisely to your pupils, but you’ll also need to communicate to parents in order to build trust and rapport.

5. Are flexible and adaptable

One of the most appealing aspects of being a teaching assistant is the sheer variety of tasks and responsibilities. To be able to juggle everything, you’ll need to quickly adapt from one task to another. This includes adapting to the needs of different pupils.

6. Go above and beyond

The best teaching assistants are passionate about their jobs and will go the extra mile to help their pupils. From pastoral support to helping with special needs, you may need to provide extra care to those pupils who need it most. 

7. Forward thinking

You must be able to use your initiative when things go off plan or when the teacher has their hands full with various tasks. You cannot simply wait for direction; you must be able to make quick decisions that will improve the situation at that moment.

8. A positive attitude

Being a teaching assistant isn’t all fun and rainbows. It’s a challenging job, but it’s overcoming those challenges that make the job so rewarding. It’s important you tackle every challenge with a positive attitude. Not only will this help you succeed in those challenges, but it will also leave a positive influence on your pupils and those around you.

Think you’ve got what it takes to become a teaching assistant? If so, why not start building towards a teaching assistant career by earning teacher training qualifications with CTC Training? Our online training courses allow you to earn qualifications from the comfort of your own home and on a schedule that suits you. Simply enrol on a course and you’ll gain access to our 24/7 student portal, where you can view course content and upload assessments at your leisure.

Start your journey to becoming a teaching assistant today. Enrol now or contact our team for more information.

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