Interviewing to be a teacher can be quite different from the job interview process in other industries. Whether you’ve just finished school and gotten your certifications, or you’ve been teaching for a while but are looking for a new opportunity, the thought of going to an interview is nerve wracking.
As a teacher, there are certain questions and answers that you need to consider in order to ace the interview with flying colors. Here are some tips to making a good first impression with your recruiter.
1. Create a portfolio
Your interview is your opportunity to show off your skills and experiences. The best way to do this is to create a portfolio that showcases your degrees, certificates, achievements, and awards available. You should also include sample lesson plans and exams from past classes you’ve taught.
2. Prepare to get asked lots of questions
Some of the questions you might be asked during the teaching interview are tough. This is especially true if you don’t take the time to prepare. Make sure you plan responses in advance to questions such as:
- What techniques do you use for conflict resolution?
- How do you manage behavior that’s inappropriate or out of control?
- How do you keep students engaged in the learning material?
3. Think about why you are a great fit for this position
You are obviously applying for this new teaching job for a reason. What makes you qualified for the position? Why do you want to work at this school in particular, or with this grade in particular? What can you showcase on your resume that proves relevant work experience that will land you the job?
4. Use professional body language and attitude
Sometimes, your appearance is all it takes to make a good or bad first impression. And this doesn’t mean you should focus on your looks or your attractiveness, but rather your professional mannerisms. Dress professionally to show that you are confident and well put-together.
You also want to invest in positive body language. Always smile and be polite to everyone you meet, as this will make you look mature and pleasant to be around. Look your interviewer in the eye when they ask you questions, and smile when you respond. Your clean, kind appearance will put you on top of the candidates list and miles above the rest of the applicants.
5. State your teaching philosophy
You should come up with an elevator pitch that best represents your philosophy and morals, and why teaching matters to you. Teachers should be intelligent enough to decide what their opinions are about certain academic topics or core teaching requirements. You should already have an idea in mind about how you want the structure of the day to look for each student. Also, talk about what skills you bring to the table when it comes to managing students.
6. Talk about lesson plans
Every state has a different set of standards that are required to be incorporated into your lesson plan. Your interviewer will likely ask you about that. Be eager when you talk about your plans for incorporating these standards into your daily lessons. Also be aware that not every school has the same budget, so there may be some areas of the lesson plan where you might want to use creativity to expand the students’ learning possibilities.
7. Prepare your own questions
As much as the interviewers will have questions for you, you should also be brimming with questions for them. They want to see that you are eager to work there, so the more questions you ask, the better. Inquire about what’s expected of you if you get the job. Ask if the school has plans for expanding or increasing their budget. It will make you appear curious and, above all, professional.