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Careers: Early Childhood Educator

Overview

Specialists in early childhood education are responsible for the intellectual, physical and emotional development of young children, with an emphasis on development between the ages of two and seven. Early childhood educators plan, organize and implement programs based on the principles of child psychology, social-emotional development, child safety, risk management and behavioral intervention strategies. Early childhood education is an umbrella description for positions in a range of educational environments. Professionals, including entry level applicants, may find employment in daycares, kindergartens, nursery schools, and special education organizations.

Early Childhood Educator Job Description

While the specifics of an early childhood education job depend on the type of employer and their requirements, there are some responsibilities that apply wherever young children receive instruction and care. These include:

• Ensuring the safety and well-being of children through constant supervision
• Planning and implementing age-appropriate activities in accordance with the employer’s methods that encourage emotional, intellectual and physical development in children
• Analyzing and understanding the needs of individual children and tailoring activities accordingly
• Establishing and maintaining communication with parents
• Ensuring that teaching methods are in compliance with all applicable regulations

Early Childhood Educator Projected Demand

The demand for early childhood educators is directly proportional to the demand for early childhood education. Increasingly, families rely on income from both parents or from a single parent, which typically results in a greater demand for early childhood educators in preschools and daycares. There are also many government initiatives that fund early childhood education programs, which in turn create new positions for applicants. As a result, employment prospects in this field are expected to remain stable over the next several years. Early childhood educators earn an average wage of $14 an hour.