Associate Teacher

Associate Teacher Job Description

Under the direction of the Cottage Supervisor and Master Teacher, the Associate Teacher provides a safe and developmentally appropriate program for young children.


Primary Functions

  • Provide a safe, secure and nurturing environment for children enrolled in the program. Supervise and directly interact with children in a warm and positive manner.
  • Plan and initiate developmentally appropriate activities based on a child-initiated, project based emergent curriculum that promotes growth and in all developmental areas. Implement activities that encourage problem solving, learning, and exploration.
  • Provide clear communication, train and supervise the teacher assistants, student interns and volunteers. Includes training other staff in routines such as mealtimes, rest time, diapering, toileting, set-up and clean-up, as well as health and safety procedures.
  • Record Daily Meal Count to meet all guidelines of the Child and Adult Care Food Program.
  • Establish and maintain positive and productive relationships with the families in our Center.
  • Respect cultural diversity in early childhood education and family practices.
  • Maintain on-going assessments of children, using Desired Results (DRDP) and DRDP Tech. Keep written documentation of children, including observation and portfolios.
  • Ensure routine sanitizing of toys and equipment is done daily. Use Cottage checklists to care for equipment and clean-up of classroom and yard, including set up and end of day procedures.
  • Attend monthly staff meetings and trainings.
  • Understand the philosophy of the Center and be able to describe its goals and objectives to others.
  • In the absence of a Master Teacher, assume responsibility for all classroom management.
  • Miscellaneous duties as assigned by supervisor.

Customer Service and Collaboration

  • Establishes and maintains working relationships with various A.S. and University departments
  • Provides necessary information to families in a clear and respectful manner


  • Ensures all operations are conducted with safety of staff and customers as first priority, and in accordance with the Injury and Illness Prevention Plan and other safety policies
  • Adheres to Associated Students’ and the Children’s Center Codes of Safe Practice
  • Reports accidents to supervisor and reviews changes required to avoid reoccurrence Ensures completion proper documentation is completed for each accident (employee and/or non-employee) and forwards to supervisor
  • Reports maintenance problems and/or broken and unsafe equipment to the appropriate party immediately


Minimum & Preferred Requirements


  • Must be currently enrolled at San Diego State University, taking a minimum of 6 units
  • Three units in Infant/Toddler development needed to work with infants or toddlers
  • Minimum of 12 CFD units including:
  • Child/Human Growth and Development
  • Child/Family and Community
  • Programs/Curriculum


  • One year as Teacher Assistant at the Children’s Center preferred but not required
  • 50 days of 3+ hours working in a licensed children’s center

License & Certification:

  • FBI, DOB, and Child Abuse Index fingerprint clearance, TB clearance, current Health Screening and up to date immunizations
  • Current Pediatric First Aid and CPR training, including Infant and Child
  • Qualify for or possess an Associate Teacher (or higher) Child Development Permit issued by California Dept. of Teacher Credentialing
  • Proof of eligibility to work in the United States
  • Obtain a Professional Growth Advisor and develop a Professional Growth Plan to complete at least 105 hours of professional growth within a 5 year period.


  • Attend monthly mandatory staff trainings
  • On occasion assist with staff trainings


  • Must follow all Children’s Center and Associated Students personnel policies
  • Must understand and adhere to the NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct
  • Act as an advocate for children and families, including confidential matters


  • Knowledge of current best practice in child development
  • Strong communication skills
  • Ability to work as part of a classroom team


This is a part-time position. Regular M/W/F or T/Th schedule between 7:30 AM and 5:30 PM.

WORK ENVIRONMENT The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

The work environment may involve exposure to various elements including but not limited to: chemicals, dust, sun, rain, blood borne pathogens, and other environmental risks.

PHYSICAL DEMANDS The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Hearing and speaking to exchange information with children, staff, and families.
  • Bending, stooping, and lifting children and/or equipment up to 50 pounds from the ground.
  • Standing for extended periods of time.
  • Moving quickly and easily both indoors and out from sitting to standing.
  • Working outdoors on a daily basis. May include rainy days.
  • Ability to visually scan the working environment to insure children’s safety.
  • Able to perform movements including grasping, touching, pushing, and pulling.
  • Manual dexterity and eye-hand coordination.


Inside the Organization:

  • Reports to the Master Teacher

A background check (including a criminal records check) must be completed satisfactorily before any candidate can be offered this position with Associated Students. Failure to satisfactorily complete the background check may affect the application status of applicants or continued employment of current Associated Students employees who apply for the position. Fingerprinting is required for all employee and volunteer positions that have direct contact with minor children.