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The Interview Process
Relax and be yourself!
in addition to trying to fill a specific grade level or subject area, interviewers are looking for certain qualities in a teacher. These qualities typically include, but are not limited to presentation and professionalism.
- Appearance: Wear appropriate professional attire and pay attention to neatness and appropriate grooming.
- Appropriate clothing choices for men include suit or sport coat, nice solid color shirt, tie, and slacks.
- Appropriate clothing choices for women include a suit with a skirt, or a dress with a jacket.
- Note: If you choose to buy a new outfit, make sure you are completely comfortable in it. (Wear it sitting down before you buy it.)
- Fragrances: Don't wear perfume or cologne.
- Hands: Be sure that your hands are manicured appropriately.
- Breath: Fresh breath is essential.
- Demeanor: Be friendly and sociable. Interviewers are looking for likable candidates.
- Voice: Keep your voice clear, pleasant and well-modulated. Speak distinctly.
- Correctness of expression: Use well-developed vocabulary, good choice of words and well-formed sentences.
- Listening: Listen closely and carefully to the questions being asked in order to grasp their meaning.
- Speaking: Good organization, integration and presentation of ideas are important.
- Poise and self-confidence: Smile, maintain composure during the interview; be self-assured without being overly confident or arrogant; make direct eye contact, and offer a firm handshake before and after the interview.
Enthusiasm for Teaching and Children
- healthy motivation to teach
- happiness with choice of profession
- warm feelings about children
- willingness to learn
- willingness to help where needed
- professional, social, and personal experiences with youngsters in addition to student teaching and field experiences
- knowledge and skill in subject area
- ability to motivate learning
- sensitivity to needs of students
- history of work with children of varying ages, abilities, and backgrounds
- ability to develop good self-concepts & trusting relationships with students
- ability to set achievable goals
- multicultural awareness
- ability to relate curriculum to students' needs
- organizational and leadership ability
- flexibility, patience, ability to analyze situations
- recognition of learning and behavioral problems
- ability to maintain suitable classroom control
- ability to understand and relate to students
- ability to cooperate and communicate well as a team member with teachers, community members, students and parents
- ability to deal well with constructive criticism
- knowledge or awareness of latest developments in education
- familiarity with professional literature and philosophies of education
- choice of personal reading
- awareness of contemporary issues
Once Your Interview Has Been Scheduled:
- Practice in front of one or two people wearing your interview outfit. Practice answering questions with approximately three-minute answers.
- Get to know the district and the school. Visit their website, or call the district if you have questions about the current curriculum and the mission statement.
- The better-prepared you are and the more you know about the district, the greater your chances become of making a good impression.
During the Interview:
- Be ready to be asked to “Tell us something about yourself.” A few suggestions: Include where you come from and where you've lived, your educational background, two or three strengths related to the position, and your reason for choosing your major.
- When answering a question, give an example of: Situation Task Action Result.
- Focus on what you have to offer, not what they can offer you (including salary).
- Be honest.
After the Interview:
- Shake hands and thank everyone for the opportunity to interview.
- Leave a handwritten thank-you note that same day.
- Stay in close touch with the Whitworth Educational Certification and Career Services Office. We send out a periodic job position e-mail announcement to all interested candidates. Our information comes from district e-mails, phone calls from principals and human resources representatives, and our own check of local employment webpages. Please keep your address and phone number current with our office at all times.
- Refine and update your résumé whenever you are preparing to begin a job search, whether it is at the end of your program or when you're seeking a new position.
- Your application materials are extremely valuable documents. All materials you provide, from the components of an online application to your résumé, should be PERFECT – free from errors, prepared with great care – and should show your thoughtful consideration.