Supporting children with special educational needs (SEN) in the classroom can be both very rewarding and challenging.
If you’re thinking of becoming a SEN teaching assistant, it’s important to have a good understanding of what the role entails.
In this article, we’ll look at 10 example answers to the question, “What makes a good SEN teaching assistant?“.
You can use these answers as a basis to create your own definition of a “good SEN teaching assistant” at your next interview.
What Makes a Good SEN Teaching Assistant? – 10 Example Answers
One of the most important qualities for a SEN teaching assistant is patience. Children with SEN often require more time and patience to complete tasks, and it’s important not to lose your cool.
Always remain calm and supportive, and remember that even small achievements are worth celebrating.
2. Good Communication Skills
Another important quality for a SEN teaching assistant is good communication skills. You’ll need to be able to communicate effectively with both children and adults, as you’ll be working closely with both groups on a daily basis.
This includes being able to understand and explain complex information in simple terms.
It’s also important to be creative when working as a SEN teaching assistant. Many children with SEN respond well to creative activities, so being able to come up with new ideas and approaches is essential.
From arts and crafts to games and role-play, being imaginative will help you engage children with SEN in the classroom.
4. Physical Stamina
Another essential quality for a SEN teaching assistant is physical stamina. The job can be quite physically demanding at times, so it’s important that you’re able to remain active throughout the school day.
This includes being able to lift and carry equipment, as well as chasing after children who might wander off!
It’s also important that you’re able to empathize with both children and adults when working as a SEN teaching assistant.
Many people who have experience working with children with special educational needs find that empathy is one of the most important qualities for success in the role.
Try to put yourself in other people’s shoes, and always be respectful of their individual needs and preferences.
6. A Sense of Humor
Another essential quality for a SEN teaching assistant is a sense of humour! The job can be tough at times, so it’s important to be able to see the funny side of things when working with children with special educational needs.
A sense of humour will also help you build strong relationships with both children and adults alike.
7. Good Organizational Skills
Another important quality for a SEN teaching assistant is good organizational skills. As the job can be quite demanding, it’s important to be able to stay organized and on top of things.
This includes knowing where to find information and resources, as well as being able to keep track of deadlines and appointments.
8. Good Time Management Skills
A good SEN teaching assistant also needs to have good time management skills. As you’ll often be working with children who have different needs and abilities, it’s important to be able to manage your time effectively.
This includes being able to plan and prepare lessons in advance, as well as being able to work quickly and efficiently when needed.
It’s also important to be flexible when working as a SEN teaching assistant. The job can be unpredictable at times, and you’ll need to be able to adapt to changing circumstances.
This includes being able to work additional hours when needed, as well as being willing to try new things and approach tasks in different ways.
10. A Positive Attitude
Last but not least, it’s important to have a positive attitude when working as a SEN teaching assistant.
Remember that every child is unique and deserves the same opportunities to succeed. With patience, creativity, and a positive outlook, you can make a real difference in the lives of children with special educational needs.
These are just a few of the qualities that are essential for success as a SEN teaching assistant. If you have these qualities, then you may be well on your way to a rewarding and fulfilling career working with special educational needs children.
Remember, patience, good communication skills, creativity, physical stamina, empathy, and a sense of humour are all essential qualities for success in any job role!