It’s not surprising that the most popular posts on my blog deal with teacher interviews. It’s that time of the season where aspiring teachers are working diligently to find job openings, land interviews, prepare for the interviews, and, most importantly, perform well. Hundreds of visitors have been visiting the teacher interview page and many teachers are posting or emailing me additional questions to add. Just another example how well the teachers community supports each other!

In the spirit of the hiring season, I am going to devote my blog this week to providing helpful advice (some from my book) regarding teacher interviews.

Slow Down and Take Control of the Teacher Interview

I have been on several interviews that I felt just flew-by and I ask myself, “What just happened?” What I realized was I wasn’t present in the interviews, feeling almost passive in the whole experience. I learned some tricks to regain control. The first step in taking back control, and not “just passing through” the interview process, is to slow down. Pay attention to your breathing, take deep, controlled breaths before going into the room where the interview will take place. Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. This technique will relax you, steady your heart rate, and put you in a better state of mind for your interview.

Bring your research notes with your skill sets and how they match with the needs of the school and review them just before you go in to the interview. This will serve as a quick reminder of some points that you should address.

When you go into the interview, and after you greet everyone, ask if you can take some notes during the interview. Quickly jot down the names and positions of the interviewers. This will be critical information for writing thank-you notes after the interview. During the interview, write down any important points made. Likewise, make notes when something you said may have caused confusion or was construed differently than your original intent. You can clarify these points later in your thank-you notes. By applying these simple acts, you become a more active participant in the process and less of a bystander.

Resource Links

Road to Teaching: A Guide to Teacher Training, Student Teaching, and Finding a Job

List of Teacher Interview Questions