Teacher Aide

Program Outline

Instruction Sets
Your program consists of six Instruction Sets which will take you step-by-step through the knowledge and skills you'll use in your new career.

Here's how it works
You receive the first course as soon as your enrollment has been accepted, and other courses will follow as you complete your exams.

Computer Specifications
As you know this is an online academic program. This means you will need high-speed internet access to begin your program. In addition, you will need access to a Microsoft® Windows® based computer running Windows 7® or later or an Apple® Mac® computer running OS X® or later, and an email account to participate in and complete your program.

Here is an overview of what you'll learn and the order in which you'll access your lessons.

Program Goal and Outcomes

Program Goal: To prepare students for entry-level positions as a teaching aide, teaching assistant, paraprofessional, instructional aide, education assistant, and/or paraeducator in the preschool, elementary, middle, or high school level.

Program Outcomes:
Upon completion of the program, students will be able to:

  • Describe typical responsibilities of a teacher aide along with the skills needed to be an effective teacher aide
  • Discuss normal cognitive, physical, and social development patterns of children from birth to adulthood
  • Identify types of learning styles and various ways that teacher aides can increase motivation in students
  • Recognize the positive approaches to disciplining students and implement techniques to increase individual student self-esteem
  • Determine how to enforce classroom rules, tracking violations of rules, and explaining consequences of breaking rules
  • Discuss how to review lesson content with individual students or in small groups, including ESL students, students with physical disabilities, early childhood education students, and special education students
  • Determine how to prepare lessons by getting materials ready and setting up the classroom
  • Recognize the measures used in the supervision of students in class, between classes, during lunch and recess, and on field trips
  • Discuss lesson plans and student progress with the classroom teacher
  • Identify societal factors that influence the behavior of children and describe how to work with children and families in a legal, ethical, and professional manner
  • Describe how to recognize possible signs of various types of child abuse such as physical, emotional, and sexual abuse as well as the required steps you are legally required to take to report suspected child abuse

Instruction Set 1

Starting Your Program
Succeed by learning how to use your Penn Foster program. Understand how to use your Student Portal. Access the Penn Foster Community and use it to find answers. Connect with Penn Foster on various social media sites.

Introduction to the Teacher Aide Program
The structure of public and private schools; functions performed by teacher aides; introduction to the specialized jobs held by teacher aides.

Instruction Set 2

Skills for the Effective Teacher Aide
Basic communications skills needed by teacher aides; personal qualities found in teacher aides.

Child Development and Human Behavior
Normal growth and development of a child; the development of non-adaptive behaviors including aggression, anxiety and depression.

Instruction Set 3

How Children Learn
The different ways in which children learn; relationships between learning and language.

Enhancing Children's Self-Esteem
Self-esteem defined and explained; its importance and origin; how teacher aides can help self-esteem now.

Instruction Set 4

Classroom Management Techniques
Managing the classroom in a learning situation; group dynamics; rewarding good behavior; role of the teacher aide in managing the classroom.

An Overview of Teaching Techniques
Major instructional techniques; the role of the instructional aide and the different ways the instructional aide can assist the teacher.

Student Supervision
Monitoring students; proctoring tests and exams; nonclassroom responsibilities; arranging the classroom environment

Instruction Set 5

Curriculum Content
Discussion of curriculum content for preschool, kindergarten primary grades, intermediate grades, middle school, junior high school, and senior high school.

Instructional Resources: Their Preparation and Use
Copy machines; overhead projectors; videocassette projectors; preparing and locating instructional materials; identifying resource people.

Technology in the Classroom
Role of technology in the classroom; different ways computers are used in the schools; interactive technology; the Internet; the future of technology in the schools.

Instruction Set 6

Language and Other Barriers
Helping students who do not speak English; unique teacher aide responsibilities; acceptance of differences in culture, ability, and gender-related activity.

The Teacher Aide in the Special Education Program
Overview of the federal, special education laws, and the handicapping conditions of mildly, moderately, and severely handicapped students.

The Teacher Aide in the Early Childhood Education Program and in the After-School Day Care Program
The beginnings of early childhood programs; curriculum; promoting positive behavior; after-school care including environment, extra-curricular projects and sports activities.

Learning Aids:
• Poison Control Slide Guide
• Themes with a Difference

Instruction Set 7

Children, Families, and Society
Family, school, and community; divorce; child custody; violence; single-parent homes; legal rights and responsibilities for teacher aides.

Helping Abused Children
Definition of child abuse; recognizing signs of various forms; reporting and follow up.

Work Experience Option


Online Library and Librarian
Students in Penn Foster Career School have access to an online library for use during their studies. Students can use this library to do the required research in the courses they complete or can use it for general reference and links to valuable resources. The library contains helpful research assistance, articles, databases, books, and Web links. A librarian is available to answer questions on general research-related topics via email and to assist students in research activities during their studies with Penn Foster Career School International.

We reserve the right to change program content and materials when it becomes necessary.

A High School Diploma or GED is required to enroll in this program.