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Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Posted on November 9, 2010 by mcjohnson

This is not really a question, but your response is important. This is one of the most common interview questions and one of the most crucial. Keep in mind that even though the question is about you – the answer that most interviewers are looking for needs to give them a good idea about how you are a good fit for their school system. Keep this in mind when answering. So instead of saying “ !m a mother of three and married to a wonderful man", you should highlight your greatest assets that you will be bringing to the table as a teacher. # n fact, keep details of your personal life $ust that – personal – do not volunteer any personal information unless it is beneficial to the aims or goals of the school district%. &ou can summari'e achievements that you have made recently or in the past, you can make allusions to how your future plans fall in line with the goals of the school system and how you can contribute to the students that you will be teaching. (ocus on the achievements that you have made that will make the biggest impression with the interviewer and that will make him or her feel as if you would bring something valuable to the table

How do you feel about team-teaching?
Posted on November 9, 2010 by mcjohnson

Sample Answer: I believe that team teaching can be advantageous in many ways. The biggest advantage of team teaching is that it fosters a supportive environment for the teacher that allows for the development and implantation of new teaching strategies while aiding teachers in feeling isolated. It can also increase the likelihood of a sound approach to dealing with problematic students while having other teachers nearby that you can use as a sounding board to be able to share both the joys and frustrations of individual class sessions. Further, when there is a collaboration of teachers in one classroom, it is simpler to come up with solutions for motivating and teaching students, as well as for establishing expectations for behavior. Tip: )any school districts are going with a team*teaching approach, so establishing that you can handle the pressures and unique challenges of the team*teaching method is a good way to show your versatility and fle+ibility for the district!s needs. ,ike any employer, the school district wants to hire teachers that have a “can do" attitude as opposed to an attitude of “ don!t do windows". -eing adaptable and accommodating will make you more approachable and valuable to school administrators, increasing the likelihood of being hired.

What do you use to measure student performance?
Posted on November 9, 2010 by mcjohnson

Sample Answer: I believe that it is important, both for the student and the school district, that teachers use standardized methods of measuring student performance. I mirror my student s performance during the school year by formatting their tests, assignments, and so on, by the achievement testing that they will complete at year s end. This gives students a heads!up on testing so that they are more comfortable and prepared for standardized tests each year. This is not only good for the student, but is also good for the district s rankings. .lthough most school districts have an established policy that teachers and educators must use to measure the performance of their students, some districts allow teachers to formulate their own guidelines. Since the amount of federal funding that public schools receive is based in part on their performance, showing that you want to promote higher performance levels on standardi'ed testing makes you a more appealing candidate.

Describe your college experience(s)?
Posted on November 9, 2010 by mcjohnson

What are your greatest strengths that you ha#e to offer? Posted on November 9. (y patience allows me to work effectively with even the most challenging students. but you don!t want to boast about too many of your strengths or you may seem deceptive – even if you are the 1total! package/ n other words. The interviewer wants you to be able to envision yourself in the role of teacher and to relay what you see back to them. not passive teaching. but a statement that is intended to prompt you for a response/ 0hile questions that require a “yes" or “no" answer may be easiest. so that I can help each and every child to be the best they can be. don!t make yourself appear to be “too good to believe". How would you describe your discipline philosophy? Posted on November 9. I am adept at identifying and maximizing the strengths of each student and learning their weaknesses so that I can better help each individual child excel to his or her potential. it is this type of open*ended question that gives you the opportunity to give a thoughtful and intelligent response. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: I believe that students must be held responsible and accountable for their actions. Tip: 0hen asking about your strengths.Sample Answer: "side from taking the re#uired classes to receive my teaching certification. This is a time to brag about yourself and see yourself in the best light possible. I can accomplish very little in a seated position behind my desk' I want to get out there with my students. being asked about the past is usually an attempt to predict future behavior. Tip: . I was also employed by the campus tutoring center where I worked with students who were struggling in various subjects. This is your time to shine/ . Tip: This answer gives the interviewer a glimpse into what your e+pectations are and how you would handle teaching on a day*to*day basis. not a question. helping individual students. I think that gave me a great foundation when I began my student activities during my last semester. I am also patient. the interviewer is looking for you to be both positive and honest about where you feel your strengths lie. demonstrating how to solve a problem or walking around the room. . on the front lines. and geometry. t is necessary to play up your strengths when answering this question. School districts ask you to describe your college e+perience so that you can highlight the achievements that you made. which is a trait that is a must!have for any educator. and the e+tra*curricular activities you participated in. (y discipline philosophy is founded in the belief that proper discipline will not only facilitate learning but it will also improve relationships and the level of respect between students. I believe in active. I believe in a lot of hands!on teaching. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: (y greatest strength is my ability to run an efficient classroom and to give individualized attention to each student. and that the ground rules and conse#uences for acceptable and non!acceptable behavior should be clearly established from the first day of school. calculus. f were to randomly wal! into your classroom one day" what would see going on? Posted on November 9. so you could expect to see me up at the %mart &oard.nd remember. including algebra. (ocus on the things that you did in college that make you a good fit for the position. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: $ou would see children being challenged to do their best and a teacher that interacts with them on a level that they can understand. the organi'ations you were involved with.gain. )iscipline can also help children to be more self!directed and realize a level of accountability in life that will serve them when they reach adulthood.

so be honest.*ersonally. %tudents of this age have an open mind and are more open to learning than older children. This can impact the child!s health. the child is often able to correct his or her behavior and rejoin his classmates with a new attitude. however. and any past e+perience that you have with disciplining children. . the interviewer is looking for applicants that are not necessarily e+perienced with children of all ages. For students to be well!rounded. they need to have time after school for family. The answer to this question will be obviously based on the actual e+perience that you have. For very young children. What are some of your biggest wea!nesses? Posted on November 10. school performance and more. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: I have found that one of my biggest weaknesses is time management. I believe that negative behavior can be reduced or even eliminated if a teacher offers the student an environment that stimulates them and respects them. It sometimes becomes difficult to incorporate each activity into the lesson. How much homewor! will you assign? Posted on November 10. 0hat the interviewer wants to see with this answer is that you do have a plan in place. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: )uring my student teaching. )uring my student teaching. Tip: There is no right or wrong answer for this question.uckily. t can be helpful to learn all you can in regards to the discipline philosophy the particular school district follows and to tailor your answer to show your compliance with this philosophy. I was assigned to a classroom that was made up of children of this age. there is no cookie*cutter answer to this question. in moderation. and found them #uite fascinating. Tip: (or reasons that are obvious. I think this is the perfect age. +omework. friends. Tip: 3ood answer. and I don t ever overwhelm my students with hours of homework. &our answer should be based on your style of teaching. and more. if I am teaching long division to my students. but that are e+cited to work with the grade that they are interviewing for. I enjoyed planning and carrying out several lessons under the supervision of the lead teacher. I may ask that they complete thirty problems each afternoon in order to practice and become proficient in this important mathematical skill. the grade you will be teaching. and that you know the importance of discipline in the educational system. For example. There are times. hobbies. What experience do you ha#e wor!ing with children of this age? Posted on November 9. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: I try to keep homework to a minimum as much as possible. I try to taper larger homework assignments so that I don t give two long assignments in one afternoon. n general. although I know that my students will learn from them. but it can also cause them to stay up late and not get a sufficient amount of sleep. I believe that the time!out system of discipline is effective because it not only ends the negative behavior by isolating the child into a time!out chair. sports. )ore and more school districts are reali'ing that over*burdening a child with homework is not only a stressor on the child. &ecause time!out lasts for just a few minutes. I have learned to prioritize my lessons so that I can bring only the material . it also gives the child time to reflect on their behavior without being summarily punished. is important. I have so many creative and educational activities planned that sometimes I try to get too much in during one class session. 2rovide a plan for action and back up your plan with clear e+amples. when it is necessary to assign more homework in order to practice a concept.

Tip: The response to this question will vary from teacher to teacher. but you want to avoid giving the impression that you see yourself as a perfectionist. which helps to facilitate the relationship between teacher and student. &y making learning fun. Tip: This is a great question to use to “sell" yourself to your interviewer. I use a hands!on techni#ue and am approachable to my students. do everything that I would like to do with my students. plays and skits. both real and virtual. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: I have found that there are a plethora of ways to teach other than simply lecturing. This makes you more appealing for a variety of different openings within the district. and should be fun .and making it fun allows me to reach students in ways that I cannot by lecturing. in order to take a more in!depth look at the subjects that we are covering in a particular unit. They don!t e+pect anyone to be free from weaknesses. (y students are able to see me as a peer. For instance. What teaching methods do you use besides lecturing? Posted on November 10. I incorporate fun into the classroom in a variety of ways. and I think their assessment is accurate. In the past. within the time limits given. I employ the facilitator style of teaching that calls for a student!centered learning approach. if I have students that are not comfortable with independent learning. and they know that everyone has weaknesses. -e honest about your teaching style. I have used art projects. I am also able to adapt my style to the needs of the student. as the answer above suggests.earning can be. I am able to reach a greater number of students than if I have a serious and stern attitude. Would you say you ma!e learning fun" and if so how? Posted on November 10.into the lesson that is most beneficial for the students. I firmly believe that students learn more freely when they are having fun instead of doing a chore. This allows the interviewer to see that you are capable of handling a vast array of situations and students and that you have a range of different skills that you can draw from when needed. I also like to take my children on field trips. while having a good time in the process. I love to do hands!on activities like experiments and crafts that help to reinforce a concept that I have lectured on. (y colleagues generally say that I am fun but tough. and other media as a way to be hands!on with the students to drive home skills. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: $es. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: (y teaching philosophy is simple. Tip: )ost educators recogni'e the fact that children are more open to learning when they are having fun at the same time. . "nd while my easy!going style is suitable for many subjects and grades. I incorporate fun into my lessons when possible. The ability to bring fun to a lesson while keeping it effective is a sought after skill/ How would you describe your teaching philosophy? Posted on November 10. &ou can also turn the perceived weakness into strengths. . &our response to reali'ing a weakness and how you rectified that weakness is what the interviewer wants to hear. I do. films. but be sure to indicate that you are able to adopt a variety of different styles of teaching when they are suitable to a particular situation and to meet the needs of the students. realizing that I simply cannot. nterviewers are human.

The interviewer in this case will be looking for something that validates why you want to work in their district. 2010 by mcjohnson Tip: (or this question. and that you take this e+ample and focus on how you determined it to be successful. I try to implement this concept into each lesson to the best of my abilities. listening and interacting with me and each other regarding the material presented. nterviewers know that planning lessons is an integral part of teaching and they also know that teachers who are successful are great planners. I would remain calm and avoid losing my temper. or the e+tracurricular activities that the school offers that you find appealing. &ecause I am the authority figure in the room. Tip: )aintaining order and control within the classroom is one of the biggest challenges facing teachers today. This shows the talent of the teacher and that the teacher is willing to put in the e+tra work that is needed to motivate students to learn. &ou can also talk about different initiatives that the school has in place or is planning that interest you. you can include information about that. however. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: " successful lesson is a lesson where my students are fully involved. Tip: 0hen answering this question. it is important that I maintain order in order to make sure the other children feel safe. What about our school district intrigues you? Why do you want to wor! for us? Posted on November 10. is when I can look at tests and #uizzes on the material and see a good level of understanding and comprehension on the student s part. then you could talk about that and how much you en$oyed your capacity as a substitute. you must do a bit of legwork and research before the interview in order to tailor a custom response that will show the interviewer why you are interested in the particular school or school district. I plan my lessons to be thought! provoking and fun at the same time because I believe that students want to have fun and that they learn more effectively when learning is a pleasure. if you were hired as a substitute teacher for the district prior to getting your certification. shows the interviewer that you are always open to improvements and that you are constantly working on further developing this skill. and what might have sparked this interest.Tip: School districts are always looking for teachers who employ more than simple lectures when presenting lessons. I would then escort the student to the office to see the principal regarding their language. (or e+ample. They also want to know that you will be able to keep your cool and avoid losing your temper. n what ways do you prepare students for state and$or standardi%ed tests? . I think that diffusing the situation without causing it to escalate further is important. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: %tudents who swear and use inappropriate language can be a challenge. interviewers want to see that you have a plan in place to deal with possible scenarios like the one described in the question. f you have personal e+perience working with the district or school. In this instance. The true measure of a good lesson. 2lacing an emphasis on the fact that that you are continually analy'ing the lessons that you present. How would you handle a student swearing or using inappropriate language? Posted on November 10. 0hen interviewing for a teaching position. How would you describe a successful lesson? Posted on November 10. not a chore. it is good if you can provide an e+ample of a successful lesson that you have taught. looking for weaknesses and strengths. and this type of behavior at school is never acceptable.

.ni#ueness and originality are rewarded. districts want to see that teachers can think on their feet to deal with these instances of violence within the school. For the struggling student.Posted on November 10. Showing that you understand the concept of differentiated instruction is valuable when interviewing in these districts. differentiated instruction allows them to be challenged by material that is at a higher level than their classmates. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: I find that using practice exams and sample #uestions throughout the year is a great way to prepare students to get ready for state or standardized testing.ike many other questions. 5bviously if a two year old hit you that!s really not the same as a 67 year old slugging you or another student/ -ut regardless of the age of the student discipline is necessary. nterviewers want to see that you are “on board" with prepping your students for testing all year long. If possible. f a student hits another student or e#en you" what would you do? Posted on November 10. allowing the student to revisit particular concepts allows them to catch up with their grade level. That type of behavior is absolutely not acceptable. I have. this one also depends on the age of the students you are teaching. If I have been assaulted. For the gifted student. Tip: School districts typically have a plan in place for handling situations where a child hits another child or teacher. )ifferentiated instruction can be wonderful for both gifted children and children who are struggling with a particular concept. I usually ask my children to write various pieces during the school year and then grade those pieces based on the criteria that will be used during state testing. . To prepare the students for the writing re#uirement on standardized tests. and it needs to be dealt with #uickly. Tip: State testing and standardi'ed testing is important to school districts because it not only measures the proficiency of students. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: $es. but the results of these tests are also taken into consideration when federal money is disbursed to each district. I would restrain the child and ask for the principal or security official at the school to escort the child out of the classroom. 4onetheless. Ha#e you e#er used differentiated instruction" and if so how? Posted on November 10. How would you encourage creati#ity in the classroom? Posted on November 10. . Tip: )any schools and school districts are promoting the ideal of differentiated instruction because it allows for the student to work at their level rather than teaching from a perspective that all kids in a particular grade are actually on the same level. I would immediately report the incident and document the event. I try to implement #uestions that are similar to what the student will be answering on the test into my lessons whenever possible. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: I believe that encouraging the creation of ideas and allowing students to assemble their own ideas and thoughts is a good way to promote creativity within the classroom. (y classroom is one where freedom of expression is encouraged and honored and where the student is taught to analyze and think for themselves. I challenge my students to be free!thinkers and am always open to suggestions from them. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: I would immediately try to de!escalate the situation and protect the children involved.

They definitely aren!t 1in it! for the money/ f one of your students wasn&t completing their wor!" how would you handle it? Posted on November 10. be honest. There!s no canned answer that can be used here. "nd besides. t is also a good idea to be able to provide e+amples of how you would help children to develop their creativity. the things that I teach the children in my class are the fundamentals that they will need to thrive as adults. I keep my rules simple and make sure that they are in a format that the student can understand. "ll of my heroes have been teachers. These rules may seem simplistic. What are your classroom rules and how do you ma!e sure your students !now them? Posted on November 10. If they don t understand the concept. Tip: Keeping order is important. There is no higher calling or more noble occupation in my eyes. $ou must love kids if you want to teach/ there s no two ways around that' Tip: 0hen asked this question.so as not to overwhelm the students or confuse them. "fter all. I would confer with the child to find out if there is a barrier to completing the work that I can help with.walk don t run . most teachers choose their career path because they love children and want to be in a helping profession. and school rules aren!t enough. Why do you want to become a teacher? Posted on November 10. -y going the e+tra mile to work with struggling children. The gift of teaching allows me to be in a true helping profession. the other is for their reference. but in general.keep your hands to yourself . but they can cover a lot of incidences that might occur. The important thing is to get the child on the right track and to overcome the obstacle that they are facing. The rules aren t lengthy . That s important. The rules are . 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: I am a staunch believer that ground rules must be laid down in the classroom from day one if I plan to maintain order and control in the classroom. . 9hances are good that you really did decide to become a teacher in order to help others and make the world a better place. I can point the child towards the help that they need by consulting with the guidance counselor or other official. and motivating students who do not complete their work is an integral part to helping the student achieve success.raise your hand when you need help . so this answer is perfect.follow directions. To address this situation. teachers are doing their part to help the entire district succeed. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: (otivation is a big part of teaching. t is important that you demonstrate that you understand this concept. even as a child. my job is to help them understand. If there is some other personal barrier that needs to be addressed. 8ach teacher needs their own set of rules that govern their classrooms.Tip: School districts are always looking for teachers who foster creativity within the classroom.treat others as you would have them treat you . I love kids. I give each student two copies of my classroom rules on the first day of class/ one he or she will sign and return to me. It s that simple. Tip: School districts and interviewers want to see that a teacher is willing to work with students who may be falling behind. -e sure to taper the rules to the grade you are teaching. The school district!s success and funding are dependent upon student progress and performance. 2010 by mcjohnson Sample Answer: I have always wanted to be a teacher.