Primary School Teacher Kaiako Kura Tuatahi

Primary school teachers teach children between the ages of five and 13 at primary or intermediate schools.

Primary school teachers may do some or all of the following:

  • plan, prepare and present lessons
  • teach a wide range of subjects such as arts, English, maths and science
  • keep up to date with curriculum changes and assessment methods
  • assess and record learning and development of each child
  • observe and manage student behaviour
  • help to develop children's social skills and behaviours
  • meet with parents, whānau and caregivers at planning or teacher/parent evenings
  • lead a curriculum area, such as English or maths, within the school
  • get involved in extracurricular activities such as camps, sports coaching and school fairs
  • do lunchtime playground duty or road patrol duty.

Special Education Teacher

To become a special education teacher you need to have two years or more of primary school teaching experience, full teacher registration, and you must complete a postgraduate qualification in the area of special education you wish to teach in.

Physical Requirements

Primary school teachers need to be fit enough to cope with standing for a long time, doing playground duty and PE, coaching sport and running school camps. Teachers usually need to know how to swim.

Useful Experience

Useful experience for primary school teachers includes:

  • child counselling
  • work with people with disabilities
  • school holiday programme work
  • childcare work or work as a teacher aide
  • working with children through groups such as Brownies and Scouts
  • coaching sports teams.

Personal Qualities

Primary school teachers need to be:

  • skilled at communicating clearly with children and adults from a range of backgrounds and cultures
  • organised, and good at solving problems quickly
  • enthusiastic, open-minded and able to motivate children
  • creative and adaptable
  • able to work well under pressure
  • firm and fair, with a sense of humour
  • able to work well in a team.

Useful Experience

Useful experience for primary school teachers includes:

  • child counselling
  • work with people with disabilities
  • school holiday programme work
  • childcare work or work as a teacher aide
  • working with children through groups such as Brownies and Scouts
  • coaching sports teams.

Subject Recommendations

A tertiary entrance qualification is required to enter further training.

Primary School Teachers can earn around $48K-$72K per year per year.

Primary school teachers may move into management roles, such as deputy principal or principal, or they may move into work outside the school system, such as:

  • teaching trainee teachers in universities
  • doing research, policy or advisory work in the education sector
  • working in training and education roles in a museum or art gallery.
Primary School Teacher