Teacher Assistant Dartmouth Campus | Sydney Campus |

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Become a Teacher Assistant in 34 Weeks

Education is constantly changing with the implementation of the all-inclusive classroom. As a result, there is a growing need for support staff in the classroom. The 34-week Teacher Assistant program includes both academic and practical work-term study. The work placement applies the academic techniques taught in the classroom and gives the opportunity for feedback. This program is excellent for someone wishing to work with children in a public school setting.

The Teacher Assistant program is a great fit for someone who:

  • Loves working with children
  • Wants to see children succeed in their education
  • Likes the idea of working one-on-one with students
  • Wants a consistent work schedule
  • Likes variety in their position

Working with kids of all ages isn’t always easy, but it’s also extremely rewarding. We all have a teacher or someone who worked in our schools as a kid who was special to us. That one person who took a bit of extra time and made us feel loved and supported. That person can be you!

Teacher Assistants work under a teacher’s supervision to give students additional attention and instruction. Assistants may also help students with research skills, or help teachers by grading tests, checking homework, and taking attendance.

There are lots of varied day-to-day tasks for a teacher assistant and many opportunities for them within a school or grade level. For example, some teacher assistants work only with special education students. These students often attend regular classes and teacher assistants help them understand the material and adapt the information to their learning style. With students who have more severe disabilities, assistants may work with them both in regular classes and in separate classes. Teacher assistants may help these students with basic needs, such as feeding or personal hygiene. Young adults may help students with disabilities learn skills necessary for them to find a job after graduation.

It’s also possible to specialize within a subject or area of learning. For example, as a teacher assistant, you may work in the computer lab, teaching students how to use computers and helping them use the software. Or you may work as recess or lunchroom attendants, supervising students during these times of the day.

Get started today in this exciting career at our Dartmouth or Sydney campuses.

Total program length: 34 weeks

admission requirements

Standard Admissions Policy:

  • Grade 12 or GED
  • Admissions Interview

In addition to the above, applicants must also provide:

  • Vulnerable Sector Check
  • Child Abuse Registry Check

Program Outline

  • Adaptive Technology

    This module is designed to provide participants with an overview of the field of assistive technology, an understanding of how to implement various technology solutions, and experience using specific technologies to create technology-enhanced learning activities to support students with diverse needs in the classroom.

  • Applied Suicide Intervention & Training Skills

    In this module students will look at the following in order to assist someone who is in crisis:

    • Attitudes – Connecting
    • Knowledge – Understanding
    • Intervention Skills – Assisting
    • Resources – Networking
  • Behavioural Supports

    This module will introduce the participant to the philosophy and concepts of person-centred behavioural support. The module will encourage positive relationships that are based on respect, dignity, and participation in decision making. It will assist participants in recognizing how their behaviour, attitudes, and values impact on interactions with the people they support. This will be taught through classical conditioning, operant conditioning, cognitive learning, and theory observational learning.

  • Child Abuse & Neglect

    This module introduces students to the topic of child abuse, the signs, the issues, the treatment and the procedures followed by all agencies.

  • Computer Fundamentals

    Students will learn to navigate through the Windows 10 Operating System (OS), and will learn how to effectively manage the computer OS files and folders, recognize varying file extensions, be able to sort and move files, arrange desktop icons, and launch programs. Students will also learn how to recognize various threats to computers and how to mitigate those threats. Introductory skills in Microsoft Office Word will be taught including Word basics, formatting, editing, and printing. Introductory skills in Microsoft Office Excel will be taught including creating lists, formatting, and printing. Basic slideshow using Microsoft Office PowerPoint.

  • Contemporary Issues in Disability

    This course is designed to introduce the student to a number of issues that are current in the field. Students will review human rights/social legislation, de-institutionalization, abuse, family supports, service models, and advocacy, quality of life and ethical issues.

  • Developmental Psychology

    In this module students will study the normal aging process in the following areas: prenatal development, infancy & childhood, the nervous system, structures of the brain, the endocrine glands, adolescence, adulthood & old age, primary & secondary sex characteristics, gender roles and human sexual behaviour.

  • Documenting and Reporting

    This course is designed to introduce the student to the importance of accurate documentation. It is intended to provide the student with guidelines for professional accountability in record keeping and to describe the expectations for documentation in all practice settings, regardless of the method or storage of that documentation.

  • Educational Programming

    This course is designed to provide an opportunity for the introduction of the curricula outcomes as presented in the Department of Education Guidelines. This overview will enable the students to become aware of the necessity of implementing sequential strategies for learning and developing specific mathematical concepts.

  • English Communications

    This course is designed to provide an opportunity for the introduction of the curricula outcomes as presented in the Department of Education Guidelines. This overview will enable the students to become aware of the necessity of implementing effective language arts skills at various grade levels.

  • Exceptionalities

    Students will be provided with an introduction to the field of exceptionalities. They will discuss issues and trends in the field and problems associated with defining and identifying individuals with exceptionalities. Emphasis will be on understanding these disabilities as well as the issues faced by these individuals and the developmental consequences of having a disability.

  • Fire & Life Safety

    The participant will be introduced to the basic concepts of life safety as they relate to the prevention of or response to hazardous conditions. The participant will be introduced to fire and life safety. Upon completion of this course, it must be emphasized that Fire Prevention, Fire Planning, Disaster Planning and Evacuation training needs to be offered annually to ensure the safety and well-being of all involved.

  • First Aid/CPR Level C & AED

    The participants will be certified in Standard First Aid and Level C Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation. Upon completion of this workshop the participant will successfully complete the objectives outlined in the predetermined curriculum for the courses offered by St. John Ambulance for the Standard Level First Aid and the Level C CPR.

  • Food Hygiene Certificate

    The participant will be introduced to the basic concepts of life safety as they relate to safe food handling. Topics such as Food Service Illness & Injury, Receiving and Storage of Foods, Preparing Food, Serving, Cleaning Recycling/Composting, and Fire Safety will be discussed.

  • Health & Personal Care

    In this module, the learner will be introduced to the principles relating to personal care using a client-centered philosophy of care approach. He/she will learn, practice, and demonstrate the practical skills necessary for respectfully, safely, and effectively providing personal care to clients across the life cycle. In addition to personal care, the learner will be introduced to the principles of body movement and safety to be followed during the performance of all personal care and household activities in the classroom, and lab settings. He/she will acquire and demonstrate the knowledge and skills necessary to ensure his/her own safety and that of the client when assisting with activities of daily living. Finally, bed making, personal hygiene (including colostomy care), grooming and dressing, and measuring vitals.

  • Health & Wellness for the Caregiver

    Students will explore the sources of stress in everyday life, the factors that can make the experience of stress easier or more difficult, and how stress influences our physical and mental health as well as ways to cope with these stressors.

  • Interpersonal Communication

    In this module students will be introduced to the principles of interpersonal communication. Students will recognize the importance of good communication for the safety and well-being of their clients/students. Good communication means better relationships with clients, students, families and co-workers as it applies to your scope of employment.

  • Job Readiness

    Upon successful completion, students will be able to create a resume representing their skills, experience, and educational background. Following this module, students will apply the principles relating to resume building, job search and follow up as it pertains to their field of practice.

  • Medication Awareness - TA

    There are many rights and responsibilities of administering medications. Students will be able to identify these issues and administer medication according to the policies and procedures of the agency (school) they will be employed with in a safe and respectful way. Students will be able to identify the various types of medications used for mental health conditions and any issues that may arise from the administration of these medications. Students will obtain and explore knowledge related to the use and misuse of non-prescription and prescription substances.

  • Mental Health Issues

    This module will introduce students to Mental Health concepts, criteria and treatment of Anxiety Disorders, Somatoform Disorders, Dissociative Disorders, Mood Disorders, Schizophrenia and Personality Disorders. It will also introduce students to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders and how it is used in diagnosis of mental health disorders.

  • Non-Violent Crisis Intervention

    On the first day of Nonviolent Crisis Interventions training, the emphasis is on early intervention and non-physical methods for preventing or managing disruptive behaviour. The second day of training expands on crisis intervention methods to include the study and practice of non-harmful Nonviolent Physical Crisis Intervention.

  • Orientation

    Students will be given an overview of their role as a Teacher Assistant in the public school system for which they will be trained. The role of Teacher Assistants in educational settings will be explored.

  • Person-Centred Planning

    Students will be introduced to the basic philosophy and concepts of person-centred planning, as it relates to full citizenship and inclusion. Person-centred planning relates to: who makes up the team, setting priorities, setting goals, setting objectives, strategies, assigning roles, and monitoring and tracking hours. Students will recognize that person-centred planning comes in many forms to address educational and social needs. Using the strategies for person-centred planning, they will focus on support that will make it easier for the person to achieve ongoing success and well-being on a sustainable basis.

  • Practicum Placement I (TA)

    This 110-hour public school board practicum is mandatory for all students. While education is offered in the classroom, integration of classroom instruction and field experience are of the utmost importance. Evaluation will be made by designated training personnel. Students will be required to keep a daily journal of their practicum experience and to attend scheduled seminar groups.

  • Practicum Placement II (TA)

    This 110-hour field practicum is mandatory for all students. While education is offered in the classroom, integration of classroom instruction and field experience are of the utmost importance. Evaluation will be made by designated training personnel. Students will be required to keep a daily journal of their practicum experience and to attend scheduled seminar groups.

  • Speaker Series/Workshops

    This module utilizes the expertise of both former and present school personnel to expose the students to first-hand knowledge and experience of the school system where they may be employed, with emphasis on local insights and expectations of teacher assistants.

  • WHMIS & OHS

    WHMIS: The participant will be introduced to the basic concepts of life safety as they relate to Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS). Topics covered include Intro to WHMIS, Product Labels Hazard Symbols Material Data Safety Sheets (MSDSs), WHMIS Education – Roles and Responsibilities, Exemptions and Restricted Applications.

    OHS: The participant will be introduced to the basic concepts of life safety as they relate to Occupational Health and Safety (OH&S). Introduction to the Department, Division and the Act, Internal Responsibility System (IRS), Occupational Health & Safety Policies, Application of the “Right to Know” will be covered.

job market

Teacher Assistants work throughout Nova Scotia in both elementary and secondary schools. Teacher Assistants help support students, teachers, and counsellors with teaching and non-instructional tasks. For example, they help in the areas of personal care, teaching and behaviour management under the supervision of teachers and other childcare professionals. They work in both public and private schools.

Average Pay: $18.32/hour

Wage information can be found at https://explorecareers.novascotia.ca/occupation/206

This program prepared me and gave me the confidence to enter the real business world. The close knit atmosphere CBBC has, made me very comfortable. Each and every staff member at CBBC was extraordinarily helpful on my journey in obtaining a full-time Administrative Assistant position in Cape Breton. Courtney MacPhail Administrative Assistant / Offshore Technical Services

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