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Special Education Teachers, Preschool
SOC Code: 25-2051.00

Teach preschool school subjects to educationally and physically handicapped students. Includes teachers who specialize and work with audibly and visually handicapped students and those who teach basic academic and life processes skills to the mentally impaired.

Sample of reported job titles: Early Childhood Special Education Teacher (EC Special Education Teacher), Early Interventionist, Exceptional Student Education Teacher (ESE Teacher), Intervention Specialist, Preschool Special Education Teacher, Resource Teacher, Special Education Resource Teacher, Special Education Teacher, Teacher, Teacher of the Handicapped


  • Arrange indoor or outdoor space to facilitate creative play, motor-skill activities, or safety.
  • Attend to children's basic needs by feeding them, dressing them, or changing their diapers.
  • Communicate nonverbally with children to provide them with comfort, encouragement, or positive reinforcement.
  • Confer with parents, guardians, teachers, counselors, or administrators to resolve students' behavioral or academic problems.
  • Develop individual educational plans (IEPs) designed to promote students' educational, physical, or social development.
  • Develop or implement strategies to meet the needs of students with a variety of disabilities.
  • Employ special educational strategies or techniques during instruction to improve the development of sensory- and perceptual-motor skills, language, cognition, or memory.
  • Encourage students to explore learning opportunities or persevere with challenging tasks to prepare them for later grades.
  • Establish and communicate clear objectives for all lessons, units, and projects to students, parents, or guardians.
  • Establish and enforce rules for behavior and procedures for maintaining order among students.
  • Instruct and monitor students in the use and care of equipment or materials to prevent injuries and damage.
  • Modify the general preschool curriculum for special-needs students.
  • Monitor teachers or teacher assistants to ensure adherence to special education program requirements.
  • Observe and evaluate students' performance, behavior, social development, and physical health.
  • Organize and supervise games or other recreational activities to promote physical, mental, or social development.
  • Plan and supervise experiential learning activities, such as class projects, field trips, or demonstrations.
  • Prepare classrooms with a variety of materials or resources for children to explore, manipulate, or use in learning activities or imaginative play.
  • Prepare objectives, outlines, or other materials for courses of study, following curriculum guidelines or requirements.
  • Present information in audio-visual or interactive formats, using computers, television, audio-visual aids, or other equipment, materials, or technologies.
  • Read books to entire classes or to small groups.
  • Serve meals or snacks in accordance with nutritional guidelines.
  • Teach basic skills, such as color, shape, number and letter recognition, personal hygiene, or social skills, to preschool students with special needs.
  • Teach socially acceptable behavior, employing techniques such as behavior modification or positive reinforcement.
  • Teach students personal development skills, such as goal setting, independence, or self-advocacy.
  • Administer tests to help determine children's developmental levels, needs, or potential.
  • Attend professional meetings, educational conferences, or teacher training workshops to maintain or improve professional competence.
  • Collaborate with other teachers or administrators to develop, evaluate, or revise preschool programs.
  • Confer with parents, administrators, testing specialists, social workers, or other professionals to develop individual education plans (IEPs).
  • Control the inventory or distribution of classroom equipment, materials, or supplies.
  • Coordinate placement of students with special needs into mainstream classes.
  • Maintain accurate and complete student records as required by laws, district policies, or administrative regulations.
  • Meet with parents or guardians to discuss their children's progress, advise them on using community resources, or teach skills for dealing with students' impairments.
  • Organize and display students' work in a manner appropriate for their perceptual skills.
  • Prepare assignments for teacher assistants or volunteers.
  • Prepare reports on students and activities as required by administration.
  • Provide assistive devices, supportive technology, or assistance accessing facilities, such as restrooms.

Technology Skills

  • Computer based training software - Children's educational software
  • Data base user interface and query software - American Sign Language Browser
  • Device drivers or system software - Screen magnification software; Screen reader software
  • Electronic mail software - Email software
  • Graphics or photo imaging software - Drawing software
  • Internet browser software - Web browser software
  • Office suite software - Microsoft Office
  • Presentation software - Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Spreadsheet software - Microsoft Excel
  • Word processing software - Microsoft Word

Tools Used

  • Adaptive communication switches for the physically challenged - Jellybean switches; Sound switches
  • Balance or gross motor equipment - Play structures
  • Board games - Educational board games
  • Braille devices for the physically challenged - Braille writers
  • Building blocks - Toy block sets
  • Canes or cane accessories - Canes
  • Childrens science kits - Science activity kits
  • Computer mouse or trackballs - Track balls
  • Cutlery or utensils for the physically challenged - Adaptive utensils
  • Desktop computers
  • Digital video disk players or recorders - Digital video disk DVD players
  • Digital voice recorders - Digital audio recorders
  • Emergency medical services first aid kits - Emergency first aid kits
  • Game pads or joy sticks - Head operated joysticks; Mouth operated joysticks
  • Handicraft tools or materials or equipment for the physically challenged - Adaptive paint brushes; Adaptive scissors
  • Headpointers or mouthsticks for the physically challenged - Pointing devices
  • Hearing aids for the physically challenged - Hearing aid devices
  • Keyboards - Alternative computer keyboards
  • Laminators - Laminating equipment
  • Laser printers - Computer laser printers
  • Letter or symbol boards for the physically challenged - Communication boards; Communication symbol sets; Eye gaze communication boards
  • Notebook computers - Laptop computers
  • Overhead projectors - Overhead data projectors
  • Page turners for the physically challenged - Page turners
  • Patient scooters - Motorized scooters
  • Personal computers
  • Photocopiers - Photocopying equipment
  • Positioning devices - Stabilizers
  • Puzzles - Educational puzzles
  • Sand or water tables or activity centers - Sand tables; Water tables
  • Scanners - Reading pens
  • Standers or standing aids - Standing aids
  • Therapeutic pegboards or activity boards - Pegboards
  • Touch screen monitors - Interactive whiteboards; Wireless touch screen monitors
  • Video cassette players or recorders - Video cassette recorders VCR
  • Walkers or rollators - Walkers
  • Wheelchairs


  • Interest code: SA
    • Social - Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
    • Artistic - Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.

Work Values

  • Relationships - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
  • Achievement - Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
  • Independence - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.

Wages & Trends

  • Median wages (2017)
    • $53,640 annual
  • Employment (2016)
    • 29,000 employees
  • Projected growth (2016-2026)
    • Faster than average (10% to 14%)
  • Projected job openings (2016-2026)
    • 2,500

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