How to Get a Teaching Job (With Common Questions)
Teachers are important to society because they help people learn, give advice and support, and set up structures for general education. As a teacher-to-be, getting an interview can be the first step in your career, but doing well at interviews can help you get a job offer. If you want to do well in an interview, it can be very helpful to know how interviews usually go and what the interviewer might expect from you. In this article, we show you how to ace a teacher interview in five steps and cover common questions, answers, and interview tips.How to Get a Teaching Job (With Common Questions)
How to get a teaching job
You might have to pass an interview before you can become a teacher. Think about these steps before your next interview to help you do well:
1. Find out more about the job and the company
When you look into the job you want, you can find out a lot about the duties, the qualifications, and the company you want to work for. You will do well at the interview if you do these things. If you know about the job, you have an advantage because you know exactly what your potential employer is looking for in a candidate and can change your resume and interview style to meet those needs. Find out what the job’s basic requirements are and decide if you can meet them. Read the job description to see if you can do the things that are needed for the job. If you know what to do on the job, your boss might like that.
2. Prepare answers for common questions
Once you know more about what the job requires, you can start thinking of answers to common interview questions. This is an important part of getting ready for an interview because it can help you organize your thoughts and answers so you can give better answers. Write down common interview questions, then read them out loud and give the right answers. To help you get ready for your interview, you can write down your answers. Think about what an employer might want to know about you, like what you did at your last job, where you went to college, and what your career goals are.
3. Make a portfolio of your school work.
During an interview, a portfolio of your work can be a good way to show off your specific educational skills. Gather up any old lessons or classroom materials that you think show how smart and creative you are as a teacher. For example, you could bring a lesson plan for a U.S. history class to show that you know a lot about history, planning lessons, and making things for the classroom. Interviewers might like that you brought physical proof of your teaching skills, and a lesson plan that matches or looks like the school’s lesson plans might help a candidate score more points with an interviewer. Use a few examples to make a portfolio that is well-organized and looks professional.
4. Talk about keywords and what the school stands for.
Most of the time, you can find keywords in the job description or listing. Keywords are any words that link the job to the industry as a whole or to the school. For instance, a college looking for a geology professor might use keywords like “experienced educator,” “geology expert,” or “geology teacher.” Referring to keywords can show the interviewer that you’ve read and understood the job description and know exactly what the school needs from a teacher. You can also match your answers to the school’s values if they are the same as yours.
This can show that your values are similar to those of the company, which could make it easier for you to fit in. Many times, interviewers want to know if a candidate’s values are the same as those of the company. This helps them figure out if the new hire will be able to work well with other team members and uphold the company’s values.
5. Ask the person questions and thank them for talking to you.
Prepare three to five questions to ask the person who interviewed you. By asking questions, you can find out important information that the interviewer might not tell you and show that you’re interested in every part of the job. You can ask about the specific tasks of your job, the company’s values, your schedule or pay, or the company’s history. Before the interview, you need to know what questions to ask so that when it’s over, you’re ready. Think about common questions asked after an interview, like “Can you tell me more about the company’s pay scale and bonuses?” After the interview, send a thank-you email or letter.
Interview questions and answers for common teacher jobs
Here are some examples of how teachers can answer four of the most common interview questions:
What made you want to be a teacher?
An interviewer might ask you why you became a teacher to learn more about your personal goals and values. You can answer this question honestly and talk about any personal reasons or stories that show why you want to be a certain kind of worker. What I mean is this:
Example: “One of the most important people in my life was the English teacher I had in 11th grade. I became a teacher because of this. When I was having problems with my mental health and with my family, my teacher told me she would help me and show me the way. That advice and understanding really helped me get better and made me want to learn more. I want to give that same gift to other people through education.”
2. Tell me about a difficult student you had to deal with.
Someone who is interviewing you might ask how you handle problems in the classroom. If you have dealt with hard students before, you can talk about how you did it and show how you run your classroom. What I mean is this:
Example: “When I was a teacher’s assistant, I had a student who was always late, made a lot of noise, and talked badly to other students. As a punishment, the teacher put the student in detention, but I stepped in and asked to talk to him. During that time, we helped him with his schoolwork and talked about things going on at home. I think it’s important to take the extra time to find out why a student is acting the way they are. This will help you solve the problem in a way that is healthy and good for everyone.”
Do you think it’s important for a classroom to have a sense of community and support?
An interviewer might ask you what you think about building a community in the classroom to find out how you help students work together and as a team in the classroom. Focus on specific ways that making the classroom feel like a community helped certain students or the whole class. What I mean is this:
Example: “I think it’s important to build a sense of community in the classroom because I think it makes it easier for students to work together when they know they’re all working toward the same goals. I like to focus on lessons and activities that get students to work together and talk to each other. I also try to build support systems by talking to students about how to understand their own feelings and who they can talk to about their own problems.”
4. How do you keep your students interested in the classroom lessons and materials?
Keeping students interested in what they are learning can be very important to their success in the classroom. An interviewer might ask you about your teaching style and how you keep students interested to find out how you plan lessons and assignments. Here’s an example of what you could say:
Example: “I try to keep my students interested by giving them rewards for their hard work and listening to what they have to say. I’ve found that letting students help plan lessons that go with the curriculum can get them more interested in their work. I usually give my students a few choices as we learn new things. Sometimes we use digital tools and videos to learn, and sometimes we just read books. When students have a choice, they seem to feel more at ease with their work.”
Tips on how to get ready for and go through with an interview
Here are some simple tips for teachers on how to get ready for interviews and how to take part in them:
- Avoid being late. Show a potential employer that you value their time and the chance to work for them by showing up on time or early, if you can.
- Dress properly. Dress in a way that shows you are a pro for an interview. Teachers can look good in business clothes.
- Be honest. If you are honest, the interviewer will be more likely to trust you, which can help you in the future. What you say should be true.
- Get ready ahead of time. Preparing for an interview can give you more time to think of the best answers and make you sound more confident. Prepare at least a day ahead of time.
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