Yukon WorkFutures

Elementary school and kindergarten teachers

NOC 4032 / RANK 11


What They Do

Elementary and kindergarten teachers work with young children in a school setting. They teach basic subjects such as reading, writing, mathematics and languages. School guidance counsellors also work in elementary schools.

Elementary and kindergarten teachers prepare subject material for presentation to students according to an approved curriculum. They may work collaboratively or individually to deliver a systemic plan of lessons, discussions, audio-visual presentations, field trips and interactive activities. Promoting their students’ physical, mental and social development, along with school readiness, are important parts of these teachers’ jobs.

Elementary and kindergarten teachers may supervise teacher’s aides who are working with children in their classroom.

A Day in the Life


Listen to A Day in the Life

Main Duties

Elementary and kindergarten teachers dedicate themselves to educating young children. A small number of teachers work for the Department of Education in various support or programming roles.

For the most part, elementary and kindergarten teachers perform some or all of the following duties:

  • Prepare courses for presentation to students according to approved curriculum
  • Teach students using a systematic plan of lessons, discussions, audio-visual presentations and field trips
  • Lead students in activities to promote their physical, mental and social development and their school readiness
  • Assign and correct homework
  • Prepare, administer and correct tests
  • Evaluate the progress of students and discuss results with students, parents and school officials
  • Identify children's individual learning needs
  • Prepare and implement remedial programs for students requiring extra help
  • Participate in staff meetings, educational conferences and teacher training workshops
  • May supervise teacher’s aides and student teachers

Working Conditions

Most teachers in Yukon work in public schools. Teachers work a standard workweek and are required by law to be present at school by a specified hour in the morning. Elementary and kindergarten teachers are part of a larger staff in a school, and from time to time must attend meetings at the end of the school day. These meetings ensure that the school’s activities are well coordinated, that the staff is aware of issues with various students or in the school, amongst other things.

Although much of their time is spent in a school setting, elementary and kindergarten teachers can undertake field trips with their classes outside of the school grounds.

Teachers work, on average, more than 40 hours per week during the school year. Coaching, offering extra support to students, staff meetings, and meetings with specialists and parents all occur outside of school hours, which are generally between 8:30 a.m. –3:15 p.m. In Yukon, teachers normally have two weeks of holidays at Christmas, two weeks in March, and seven weeks in the summer.

How Do I Get There

Every person employed as a teacher, principal or superintendent in the Yukon public school system is required to have a teaching certificate issued by the Yukon Department of Education. The only exceptions are some substitute teachers, who require a letter of permission from the Department of Education and are permitted to fill in for an absent teacher if no qualified teacher is available.

The Professional Certificate for teachers requires a Bachelor of Education (B.Ed.) degree or a bachelor's degree in another field combined with at least a year of teacher training.

Students can complete their education degrees in Yukon and qualify for the Professional Certificate through the Yukon Native Teacher Education Program (YNTEP). This program originally accepted only First Nations students, but now accepts applications from all students. The four-year program is offered by the Yukon Department of Education in conjunction with Yukon College and the University of Regina. Students receive their degrees from the University of Regina.

Other students choose to go outside Yukon to complete education degrees. However, they can complete one to two years of university classes at Yukon College. The courses can be transferred for full credit to a number of universities.

Most universities and some university colleges offer bachelor's degrees in education. Most also offer one-year or two-year programs for students who already have a bachelor's degree in another discipline and want a diploma or degree in education.

Teachers and counsellors are paid according to their education level and experience. In Yukon, teachers receive salary increments based on their education level and the number of years they have been teaching.