Elementary School Teacher Day is celebrated on the third Monday in January to appreciate the people who work with children in their formative years. Elementary schools are part of primary education for students around the age of four to eleven, from pre-kindergarten or kindergarten to fifth grade. These schools teach us socialization and basic academic skills — fundamentals that will help students throughout their lives. Elementary teachers are often the first educators in our lives who kindle the knack of learning in us. Becoming one requires a bachelor’s or master’s degree in Early Childhood and Elementary Education.
History of Elementary School Teacher Day
Elementary schools were once synonymous with primary schools. Schools up to grade eight were considered elementary schools. Following World War I, junior high schools came about, which educated students between their elementary and secondary school years, leaving elementary schools to educate students from kindergarten through to sixth grade. In the 1960s, a shift from junior high schools to middle schools began, now including sixth grade.
The elementary school curriculum helps students with the educational basics: reading, writing, arithmetic, an introduction to natural and social sciences, health, arts and crafts, and physical education. Elementary schools also help students socialize with their peers and create an identity within the community and nation. At the beginning of the 21st century, the elementary curriculum was shaped by an emphasis on subject-matter fluency in English, mathematics, and basic sciences. Later on, computer literacy, computer-assisted instruction, and other technologies were introduced into school programs to keep up with the high demand for technical knowledge.
The standards movement, which gained momentum in the late 1990s, advocated for more standardized testing in the American elementary education curriculum. Standards advocates argue that academic achievement can be best assessed through standardized tests. These tests help determine whether students are performing at prescribed levels in key areas such as reading and mathematics. Most of the states have established standards and require testing in these areas. Strongly endorsed by U.S. President George W. Bush, the standards approach was infused into the federal No Child Left Behind Act of 2001.
Elementary School Teacher Day timeline
Elementary schools are first promoted in the Massachusetts Bay Colony.
The term ‘primary school’ is derived from the French ‘école primaire.’
Elementary schools in Japan are established for students between the ages of six and 12.
In the U.K. free elementary education is proposed for students over 11.
Elementary School Teacher Day FAQs
What makes a good elementary teacher?
Great teachers are warm, accessible, enthusiastic, and caring. Teachers with these qualities are known to stay after school and make themselves available to students and parents who need them. They are involved in school-wide committees and activities, and they demonstrate a commitment to the school.
What skills do elementary teachers need?
Elementary school teachers must be patient, able to collaborate with other teachers, explain new concepts, engage students in learning, manage classrooms, adapt lessons, work with diverse backgrounds, and be a leader.
What is the difference between elementary and primary school?
‘Primary school’ is a variation of ‘elementary school’ more commonly used in the United Kingdom. It usually covers first to sixth grade.
How to Observe Elementary School Teacher Day
Thank your teachers
If you are still in touch with your elementary school teachers, reach out to them on Elementary School Teacher Day with a message of gratitude. Take an extra step by visiting them in their classes, especially if they still teach at your old school.
Celebrate with your children
If you have children in elementary school right now, encourage them to thank their teachers for the help they do in educating them. Join them to give gestures of appreciation.
Go down memory lane
Go through your old notebooks and class photographs on Elementary School Teacher Day. You will be surprised to find how much of what you know today was actually taught to you in elementary school.
5 Facts About Schools Around The World
The oldest school in the world
The King’s School in Canterbury was founded in 597 after St. Augustine arrived in England.
Mealtime is in the French curriculum
During mealtime in France, children are supposed to learn about different foods and where they come from.
Kids start school quite late in Finland
Finnish kids start school at the age of seven.
The Russian academic year
In Russia, the first day of school is called ‘Knowledge Day.’
Floating schools in Bangladesh
They are very common and have internet access, a library, and are solar-powered.
Why Elementary School Teacher Day is Important
It’s a day to thank our teachers
Elementary School Teacher Day reminds us of the immense contribution that elementary teachers make in our lives. They teach us the basics of every subject and give flight to our imagination.
It celebrates learning
Elementary education is crucial for every child, preparing them for a lifetime of learning. Elementary school teachers are responsible for kindling our love for learning.
It makes us nostalgic
Elementary School Teacher Day also reminds us of the good ol’ carefree days we spent in the company of our friends and teachers. This inspires us to be young at heart even if it's for a moment.
Elementary School Teacher Day dates