Date
19 February 2019
teacher aide practice 002

Supporting effective teacher aide practice

A systems approach for school leaders to support teacher aides to be effective in their roles.

The terms teacher aides, support staff, teaching assistants, and TAs are used interchangeably reflecting the different language used by schools. The content will be most useful for primary and intermediate schools, and also has relevance for secondary contexts.

Strategies for action

Four key strategies for supporting teacher aides to be effective in their roles

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Review and refine the TA's role and responsibilities

Teacher aides can positively contribute to teaching and learning when they have the support they need to be effective in their roles and responsibilities. 

Three suggestions for implementing this strategy:

Develop effective recruitment, induction, and PLD processes

At the outset of employment, make explicit your school's commitment to inclusion and your investment in induction and ongoing professional learning of your teacher aides.

Video hosted on Vimeo http://vimeo.com/159137810

Find the right people who want to be part of your community and who share a vision for the success of all students.

Three suggestions for implementing this strategy:

Support and prepare teachers in their role

Teachers need to be well prepared for their role as manager of other adults that work with students in their class. Offer all teachers opportunities for professional learning in this area.

Four suggestions for implementing this strategy:

Identify areas to build TA understanding and confidence

Build teacher and TA understanding of areas where TAs can make the most effective contribution.

Five suggestions for implementing this strategy:

  1. Develop effective interactions

    Includes:

    • Resources
  2. Learn how to scaffold support

    Includes:

    • Video
    • Resources
  3. Support group work

    Includes:

    • Resources
  4. Enable student independence

    Includes:

    • Resources
  5. ​Support student friendships

    Includes:

    • Video
    • Resources

Key resources

Making best use of teaching assistants Guidance report

Making best use of teaching assistants: Guidance report

Read time: 54 min

This is a practical, evidence-based UK guide for primary and secondary schools to support effective practices for working with teacher aides. It contains recommendations based on the latest research examining the use of teacher aides in classrooms.

Publisher: Education Endowment Foundation

File

Making the best use of teaching assistants: A self-assessment guide

This guide describes “ineffective”, “improving” and “exemplary” practice for evidence-based recommendations on the effective use of teacher aides. It is from Maximising the impact of teaching assistants (2nd edition), a UK resource.

Publisher: Centre for Inclusive Education

Teachers and teachers aides working together School leaders

Teachers and teachers' aides working together: School leaders

Read time: 10 min

This is a professional development resource for NZ schools, which includes nine modules that teachers and teacher aides can complete together. Downloadable PDF.

Publisher: Ministry of Education | Te Tāhuhu o te Mātauranga

Website

Teachers and teachers' aides working together

Nine modules that teachers and teachers’ aides complete together to strengthen working relationships, improve role clarity and build knowledge of inclusive practice.

Publisher: Ministry of Education | Te Tāhuhu o te Mātauranga

Website

The teaching assistant’s guide to effective interaction

This is a practical, evidence-based UK guide to support classroom interactions between teacher aides and students. It contains practical strategies and reflective activities for both teachers and teacher aides.

Publisher: Centre for Inclusive Education

Price: One off charge £20.98

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