Let’s Rock Your Teacher Interview!
Picture this- it is teacher interview day for your dream teaching position. You are starting to feel nervous…anxious…excited… you’ve been waiting for this opportunity for quite some time.
Let’s talk through things you can do the day of your teacher interview to set yourself up for success.
Teacher Job Interview Tips: Mastering the DAY OF
Give Yourself PLENTY of Time
You’ve heard it before, but I’m telling you…give yourself a cushion of time when you are arriving at an interview.
It prevents any extra stress, which can cause even more nerves, and might throw you off of your game. (Not to mention- it isn’t the greatest first impression.) There could be traffic. You could arrive to the school and realize you aren’t sure where to park, or where the entrance is.
To ace your teacher interview, follow this formula:
amount of time to get to the interview based on Waze or google maps estimate + 20 extra minutes = the perfect amount of cushion time
For example: If my interview starts at 3:00 pm, and I live 25 minutes away, I will take 25 minutes + my back up 20 minutes and know that I need to leave about 45 minutes before my interview start time. I will leave around 2:15 pm.
Even if I end up sitting in my car for 20 minutes reviewing my interview answers, at least I can feel calm knowing that I am there, I found a parking spot, I know where the entrance is, etc.
Introduce Yourself & Acknowledge EVERYONE
When you walk into that school- greet the person working at the front desk as though they were the person making the hiring decision.
If you see a family member or a student walking out of the building- smile at them as though you were their teacher.
If you walk into a room with a panel of people- give everyone eye contact as they introduce themselves.
Very rarely is it only the principal who makes the final hiring decision- they ask for input from their interview panel, their assistant principal, and anyone else you interacted with during your time at the school. Be sure to acknowledge everyone and treat everyone with the same respect you do for the principal.
Break the Ice
Don’t be afraid to be the first person to say something- it is okay to break the ice. It shows your confidence and can let your personality shine through.
If you walk in, and a few people are at the table, but others are still tricking in, go ahead and give a “Hi, I’m Jessica- it’s so nice to meet you.” or a “Hi! How’s it going?” “How has your week been going?” or even a “Hi- I am Jessica. I am so excited to be here.”
If you noticed anything that caught your eye as you entered, you could use that as an ice breaker as well. “I noticed the “featured books” area when I walked in- I LOVE that idea!”
Trust me- it will not only ease your nerves and any tension in the room but will show that you are good with people, which is an important part of being an educator.
Take a Breath
You prepped and prepped, and now here you are. They start asking you questions you prepared for, and you are ROCKING them. Then comes the ‘unexpected question.’
It is such a great question, and you didn’t even THINK about this one. You didn’t prepare for it at all, and you start to freak out.
TAKE A BREATH. Then say, “Wow- that is a really great question. Do you mind if I take a second to think about my answer?”
They will say yes.
Then, take 20-40 seconds to formulate a response, and then go for it! It is much better to advocate for yourself than to just ramble for a minute and not give a clear response. Take a breath.
On teacher interview day, here are a few things you can do to set yourself up for success.
- Give yourself PLENTY of time to get to the school and get settled.
- Acknowledge EVERYONE
- Break the Ice