Throughout my 16+ years as an interview coach, I have found that the most difficult task for job seekers in finding and explaining their teaching accomplishments during a teacher interview.
Faced with an interview panel of professionals who will critique your every word, I can certainly understand how this can be one of the most gut-wrenching processes one will ever go through within a lifetime.
The best advice I can provide you is to ensure you know what you can offer to the school district and its students. Know what the school district and the school’s strategic goals and objectives are and match how you can help them achieve these objectives.
The most vital thing to remember is to remain calm before going into the interview room. In many cases, the interviewer may be as nervous as the interviewee.
Within the competitive job-seeking area of a classroom teacher, it is essential to selling your teaching accomplishments, student successes, and ability to help students realize their full academic potential.
Within the Assistant Principal area, you must sell your leadership, administrative experience, community involvement, along with key strengths to enhance collaboration and strengthen school-community initiatives. Besides, it is exceedingly necessary to touch upon your relevant educational work or volunteer experience.
Share Your Teaching Accomplishments Throughout the Interview
Most people do not like to speak about their accomplishments and have a hard time showcasing what they can bring to the table. Add to that a bundle of nerves and the anxiety of really wanting to land the job, and you can have a melting pot for disaster.
This is why preparation, research, and practicing selling your teaching skills are important to interview success. Prepare, practice, and conquer!
When entering the interview room, it is essential you remain calm, cool, and collected. Introduce yourself with a smile and firm handshake, and be sure to maintain good eye contact during your conversation. Touch on specific accomplishments and stay clear of providing generic, job description-like duties.
Should you be faced with a question such as “Do you have any experience with…”, and you do not have any experience with that specific duty, continue to sell yourself by offering an answer such as “No, however, I do have experience with…”,… and turn the potentially negative mark into a positive one.
As an aside, interview questions will often be geared towards seeing how well you think on your feet, keep in mind, expect the unexpected.
If you are making a career change to teaching, you will have specific questions regarding the transition.
In your mind, you should have thought through what you would do in the event you were asked a question that would otherwise catch you off guard. Your response should be calm and calculated in such circumstances – never rush to respond to a question you are not certain about, as a wrong response could reduce your chances of getting the job.