To ace your next teacher interview, you will need to review the best answers for common interview questions and practice a mock interview. Luckily, you can do both here and after reading the best answers below, take a free mock interview and get detailed results from artificial intelligence software about your teaching skills and personality.
Teaching is considered one of the noblest jobs in the world. It is among career paths that give an individual an opportunity to change the lives of other people. Teachers get to regularly see and measure the impact they have.
A job interview for high, middle, and elementary school is intimidating. The best way to ensure that the interview goes smoothly is to prepare well. Practicing standard interview questions can help in giving an impressive interview.
Tip: An average school interview is about twenty minutes long so make sure you are ready to make the best of it.
What Is the Hiring Process?
The interview experience can differ for each interviewee. Most teachers are hired in the summer since it’s when positions open up. The interview process can be:
- One-on-one meeting with the principal
- Group panel interview
- Sample lesson presentation delivered in front of administration and team of teachers
The process and length depend on the needs of your target district. Some prefer hiring new graduates and developing their skills while other districts choose experienced educators.
Tip: Teaching provides incredible professional and personal life experiences.
Common Teacher Interview Questions
Give an example of a prepared lesson and the results you achieved
It is a common question in interviews for a teaching position so it is important to be prepared for it. To make sure your answer is more impressive, you can also bring artifacts from a previous lesson plan. Every teacher has a unique approach to preparing lessons as teaching is an individualized field. The interviewer wants to know what the candidate’s approach is to teaching. Highlighting the outcomes achieved by the lesson plan is essential.
Teacher interview questions: why do you want the job in our school?
The interviewee must be familiar with the school he or she is applying for. Read the mission statement and values on the website. Considering things like the local community the school is serving, approach towards curriculum and student population diversity will help in coming up with a good answer.
Tell us about a time when you disagreed with a colleague. How did you handle that?
Teachers, just like any other colleagues sometimes disagree. The interviewer is looking for an answer that showcases the candidate’s ability to fit well into a new team and handle disputes professionally. To validate the answer, include an example of a team dispute you may have faced before and the steps you took to resolve it.
Collaboration is an integral part of teaching and a daily requirement. Teachers constantly have to work with each other as they have shared goals of getting students ready for the next grade. Share a situation in which you had a proactive role in encouraging or creating a recurring collaborative time with the team.
What do you think about correction and discipline in the classroom?
Working with children is not an easy task. The classroom behavior can get out of hand and the interviewer wants to know that the candidate can handle the situation if things get out of hand in the classroom.
Share details of how you work with students to get an understanding of how their behaviors have an impact on fellow students. Being proactive is the key to successful classroom management. The students must understand the workings of a classroom as it will discourage bad behavior.
Teacher interview questions: what is your favorite subject to teach?
The question gives you a perfect opportunity to share personal motivations and passions that did not make it to the resume. Make sure you have a subject and a clear reason for choosing it. Vague answers are not a good approach. The answer should showcase your passion for education.
Do you have a flexible approach regarding the grade levels you would teach?
The licensing and regulations of different states regarding which grade you are eligible to teach vary. Having the flexibility to teach more than one grade is a huge plus. It gives you an edge over other candidates.
Photo by Max Fischer from Pexels
This question is a part of almost every interview no matter what role you are applying for. Choose something that you lacked as an educator but have worked on overcoming and improving. Make sure you mention a weakness and highlight how you have managed to turn it into a positive.
What is your strategy for handling pressure?
Teachers have to deal with different parents, manage challenging goals set by the district and the school, and occasional friction with colleagues. They face a lot of pressure and the interviewer wants to know that you can handle pressure. Share how you thrive under pressure as it pushes you to perform your best. You should also mention your ability to easily adapt and meet changing requirements that come with the job.
Why did you choose a career in teaching?
When answering this question you should shine a light on what part of the profession appeals to you most. You can mention your love for learning or connecting with children. You should also focus on what you can bring to the table as a teacher. You can say that knowing you can make a difference in children’s life is a big motivation for choosing the profession.
How do you meet the needs of a classroom in the presence of differential learning students?
The question presents the perfect opportunity to share your experience of working with students with varied learning requirements. If you have taught students that need in-classroom assistance or an ESL student then you should mention it. Make sure you mention the strategies you used to fulfill the educational needs of these students while managing the classroom as a whole as well.
What is your approach to handling a disruptive student?
Every classroom has a disruptive student which is why this question is common in interviews for teachers. Never answer the question by negatively mentioning a previous student. Share the approach you took to understand the root cause of the disruptive behavior and how it helped in relating to the student on a personal level. Talk about all the steps you took to work with the student and parents to establish a collaborative plan to improve the situation.
Discuss a situation in which you collaborated with your fellow teachers to overcome a challenge
Teachers are mostly concerned with individual goals, but they also have team goals, and they require efficient collaboration. Choose a past scenario where you collaborated with fellow teachers to find a solution to a difficult situation. Emphasize the role you played in the collaboration.
What is your opinion about technology in the classroom?
Technology is becoming an integral part of classrooms, so interviewers are looking for candidates that can easily adapt to the technological changes. Discuss how you have incorporated technology in your classroom before.
What is your reaction to negative feedback from administrators and parents?
Answer this question with a neutral approach. It is never a good idea to share past experiences with a negative tone. Discuss how you are open to feedback, good and bad, as it helps in improving your skills and becoming a better educator. Teaching jobs are challenging, competitive, and hard to land. Make sure that you are prepared for the questions and answer them confidently.
Teacher Interview Questions Summary
Teaching is a competitive profession. It is important to go into the interview well-prepared so that you can easily talk about specific subjects like educational philosophy, the local community around the school you are interviewing for, and the mission statement of the school. If you have an interview for a kindergarten teaching post, this article about kindergarten teacher interview questions will come in handy.