Science teachers use interactive discussions and active participation to help their students apply and understand concepts in science. They are skillful in influencing and helping students solve problems and understand science concepts and objectives. They use a variety of science equipment such as balances, microscopes, measuring devices and chemicals. A science teacher establishes learning objectives, plans and prepares assignments, lessons and instructional materials, administers testing, marks tests and evaluates the student’s progress. They create a positive classroom environment and get the students involved and eager to meet their learning objectives.
A middle school science teacher has to maintain discipline and order in their classroom, while taking the necessary safety measures to protect not only the students but materials, equipment and facilities. When their students have academic problems, they council them and meet with the parents to discuss the students problems and progress. Unlike years ago, computers play an important role in a student’s education, by providing the educational software to expose their students to a large range of science material. Science teachers also use computers to perform clerical and administrative duties, record student’s grades and prepare lessons.
It is rewarding for teachers to see their students learn and appreciate knowledge but can also be very frustrating with disrespectful and unmotivated students. Job opportunities for science and other teachers remains positive because of the many teachers reaching retirement age over the next eight years, resulting in many new job openings. There is also a need for teachers in rural and low-income areas.
Common work activities include:
- Participating on school based committees, working with other teachers in the science department and other departments in the school.
- Planning and developing effective lesson plans that cover the curriculum and address the students interests and needs.
- Meeting with students and parents to discuss any concerns or issues with student progress and learning.
- Setting up laboratory experiments, coordinating field trips or arranging for speakers to come into the classroom.
- Keeping accurate records, ensuring that students are progressing and monitoring progress through report cards, computer grading logs and other methods.
- Attending and participating in ongoing professional development activities.