Why do you want to be a teacher?
“You have to know who you are as an individual and as an educator, and you have to know what you can bring to the school,” says Calvin Brown, Senior Recruiter at Alignstaffing, an education staffing firm. This question gets to the heart of that passion and self-awareness.
Tell me about a time when you faced a difficult challenge.
Brown says that with either of these questions, the interviewer wants to hear: “When you come across things that are obstacles, how do you overcome them?” In other words, the interviewer wants to see that you can solve problems in an intentional way. Brown also emphasizes that accomplishments and challenges often come hand in hand. So answering this question shows “that drive for achievement” that interviewers want to see in teachers.
Walk me through a typical lesson.
The interviewer isn’t just looking for a quality lesson that’s accurate and engaging. They also want to know how you think about planning lessons. “A lot of it’s going to be about debriefing your process, like what went well…and then what are things that you can work on,” Findley says.
Tell me about a time when someone gave you feedback and how you handled that.
Receiving and implementing feedback well is important for your growth as an educator. “This is actually most critical for veteran teachers,” Swartz says. Since they’d be most likely to “communicate a level of, ‘I’ve already gotten this, I’ve already arrived, I don’t need any extra feedback.’”
Teacher Interview Questions About Social Relationships
Building trust and creating meaningful relationships lie at the heart of successful teaching. Schools want to know that the teachers they hire can bond with students individually; build healthy, supportive communities in their classrooms; manage discipline issues; and work effectively with parents. The following teacher interview questions give teachers a chance to show how they accomplish those things:
What are hiring managers looking for when interviewing teachers?
No matter the specific role or workplace, hiring managers look for common themes in qualified teaching applicants:
Keep these themes in mind as you prepare for your teaching interview and look for opportunities to communicate them whenever possible—especially in response to these common questions.
Need some tips for writing your teaching resume? Find a full guide here.