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Get a Teaching Job: Preparing for the Interview

Janelle Cox

Do you want to know the best-kept secret to preparing for a teaching interview? Know your stuff. As long as you familiarize yourself with the school and position that you are interviewing for, then you should be able to nail that interview. Here are a few more tips to help you prepare to get a teaching job by preparing for the interview.

Get a Teaching Job By Being Knowledgeable

You went to college and graduated, so you know your stuff and you are qualified for the job. Now, all you have to do is show your potential employer how knowledgeable you really are. Familiarize yourself with the school, the district, and the standards. Be prepared to know educational buzzwords and be able to give examples that you know them. If you are going to talk about higher-order thinking skills, then you have to be able to explain how you will implement them into your lessons. When you are knowledgeable and prepared, you will definitely stand out above the rest, and it will speak volumes to your prospective employer.

Practice Potential Interview Questions

Interviews are all about how you answer the questions. If you stumble upon your words and cannot answer a question, then there’s a good chance you will not get the teaching job. Here is a list of a few possible interview questions as well as the possible answers to help you prepare.

  • How will you differentiate learning to suit all of your students’ needs? Possible answer: “I would use the multiple intelligence theory, along with a student choice board, flexible grouping and tiered assignments.”
  • How will you communicate and involve parents in the classroom? Possible answer: “I will create a classroom website, weekly newsletter, as well as offer volunteer opportunities. In addition to that, I will open up communication via an app, text, and email.”
  • How would you incorporate technology into the classroom? Possible answer: “I would utilize the computers and iPads during learning centers, as well as the whiteboard. If any of these things are unavailable because of funding, then I will go on Donorschose.org.”
  • Describe your behavior management plan. Possible answer: “I would use a behavior clip chart where every student starts her day on the ready-to-learn green light. Then students have a chance to move their clip up or down throughout the day depending on the choices they make.”
  • How will you prepare your classroom if you get the teaching position? Possible answer: “I will hang motivational quotes and pictures, label desks, create a daily schedule, and post a list of class rules, etc.”

Get Your Teaching Portfolio Ready

Your teaching portfolio is another key element to prepare for your teaching interview. This professional portfolio will be your best asset in the interview. Make sure that it is filled with examples of student work, lesson plans, common core standards, your resume, pictures, a class website, recommendation letters, your degree, your teacher certification, and whatever else you can think of that will put you above the rest of the pack. When the prospective employer asks you a question, don’t just give them a verbal answer, but show them a concrete example of what you are talking about by opening up your teaching portfolio and showing them. Use this checklist to make sure you have all of the essentials in your portfolio:

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  • Teaching philosophy
  • Resume
  • Certifications
  • Strategies used – cross curricular, differentiated, innovative
  • Technologies integrated
  • Class photos, activities, lessons
  • Communication with parents – websites, etc.
  • Assessment, sample rubrics

Teaching Interviews are meant to showcase you, and usually focus solely on your experience, your teacher training, and what you can contribute to the school district. As long as you follow the tips above and come to the interview prepared, then you will be off to a good start.

Do you have any tips on how to prepare for a teaching interview? Please feel free to leave a comment below. Your tip may be the one that gets a prospective teacher to land the teaching job of her dreams.


Janelle Cox is an education writer who uses her experience and knowledge to provide creative and original writing in the field of education. Janelle holds Masters of Science in Education from the State University of New York College at Buffalo. She is a contributing writer to TeachHUB.com, TeachHUB Magazine, and Hey Teach. She was also the Elementary Education Expert for About.com for five years. You can follow her on Twitter @Empoweringk6ed, on Facebook at Empowering K6 Educators, or contact her at Janellecox78@yahoo.com.