It’s normal to be a little nervous before an interview. In teacher interviews, it’s important to be confident and familiar about various relevant topics in the field. At Grand Canyon University, the Academic and Career Excellence Center has the resources you need to prepare yourself, from mock interviews to resume review. Some general tips can help prepare you for the groundwork of a teacher interview.
1. Prepare a Professional Portfolio
Teachers are expected to walk into an interview with more than just copies of their resume. You’ll need to assemble a portfolio that includes your awards, certificates and any other professional achievements. Your portfolio should also include a few sample lesson plans and syllabi. School administrators need to know that the teachers they hire are capable of putting together meaningful and engaging lesson plans.
2. Use Positive Body Language
Teachers must be exceptional communicators. Before your interview, look in the mirror and answer a list of questions about yourself and your experience. During your interview, pay attention to what your verbal and non-verbal language says about you.
Sit up straight, smile often and use hand gestures carefully to get your point across. Taking the time to understand how you present yourself will help you be more confident. Confident body language during an interview suggests confidence in front of students.
3. Demonstrate Your Passion for Teaching
School administrators want to hire teachers who seem genuinely passionate about the subject they teach and the students they hope to inspire. The content of your teaching philosophy isn’t necessarily as important as your enthusiasm for it. Show that you care about your future students when discussing topics like classroom management and engaging students who come from a variety of backgrounds and experiences.
4. Discuss Curriculum
Curriculum will be a key topic during your interview. You’ll likely be asked about the curriculum you’d like to develop as a teacher at that particular school. Be prepared to discuss how your vision for the lesson plans will fit into state and federal education standards. State and federal standards are a critical topic for school administrators because funding is tied to compliance with them.
5. Discuss Parental Communication
You may be asked how you intend to maintain open communication with the parents. This is a critical area because parental involvement is ties into student success. Think beyond open house events and talk about how you’ll use technology to keep in touch with families. Will you create an email list or class website for notifications? Consider how you’ll manage any privacy concerns with the use of technology for communication.
6. Explore Difficult Situations
You may be asked to discuss how you’ll manage difficult situations. One possible question is, “Tell me about a time when a student exhibited challenging behavior in class. How did you handle it?” Before your interview, consider possible examples you could use from your time as a student teacher.
Talk about how you enforced the rules consistently and uniformly, or perhaps about how you met privately with the student to talk about what was going on. This is a good opportunity for you to highlight your skills as an effective mentor.
Are you ready to make the most of a career in education? The College of Education at Grand Canyon University offers a range of extensive programs designed to train the next generation of educators. Career Resources at GCU are available to help prepare for interviews and transition from collegiate to professional life.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University.