One of my favorite students contacted me the other day (Don’t judge me. All teachers have favorites). She asked me for a little advice on how to interview effectively. I couldn’t wait to answer her email. I have been waiting for someone to ask me this question for a LONG TIME.
What are they teaching kids in college these days?
Seriously. Is anyone telling our soon-to-be-grads what to do and not do at an interview? How to dress? How to communicate? HOW TO SHAKE HANDS?
Below is my list of common questions I ask at a first interview.
- Tell me about yourself (You wouldn’t believe how many people cannot answer this question).
- What are you reading?
- What do you love to teach?
- Tell me your philosophy of education.
- What do you know about 21st century teaching, PBL, collaboration, innovation, student questioning, student voice and choice, close reading and inquiry (If you don’t know these terms, look them up).
- What do you think about standardized testing?
- What do you know about our school?
- What brings you here?
- What questions do you have for me? (You better have some questions).
I want to see samples of your work, pictures of your students working on projects, letters of recommend from co-workers, hard-copy portfolio, or a well-written resume or Preziume.
Dress like a professional adult.
Dress like a professional who has career plans. Ask your mother how to dress, not your friends. A few years ago, a prospective teacher came to her interview in shorts and a t-shirt. No. Kidding. Needless to say that person does not work at GCS.
Practice interviewing … no matter how silly or painful it is DO IT.
Subscribe to ASCD and read their monthly magazine. You will knock the socks off a perspective employer if you, as a new grad, subscribe to and read a prestigious educational periodical. It will set you head and shoulders above the crowd.
Follow these tips and you will be on your way to landing your first teaching job. By the way, it doesn’t hurt to pray!
Do you have an interview experience to share? Jot me a note below—I’d love to hear about it!
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