Congrats! You landed an interview for your dream teaching job! But, due to the crazy times, it is a digital interview. Although this interview format is not traditional, no worries! Below is a list of tips and tricks compiled by teachers who have been on both sides of the screen during digital interviews. So, take a deep breath, read through this list, and good luck!
Before The Interview:
Email your Portfolio
A teaching portfolio is a way to showcase your teaching (or student teaching) experiences. During traditional interviews, teacher candidates bring along their portfolio. During this new digital time, it is advised to email it beforehand. This allows the interview team to look over your portfolio and get to know you as a teacher. Is a teaching portfolio needed? Not always. However, best to be prepared! If you feel a portfolio is something you want to create, here is a checklist below.
- Title Page
- Letters of recommendation and resume
- Your Teaching Philosophy
- Lesson Plans-Don’t include the whole document, just type up a little blip about the goals and steps of the lesson. Include pictures of student work if possible.
How to create this digital portfolio? You could email it as a file or create a blogger, word press, or google site. Decide what is best for you!
Research the District
Want to impress your digital interview team? Research the district. Read their mission statement, look up their curriculum and learn about their initiatives or goals. Also, since many things about next school year are up in the air, learn about the digital learning platforms they use. This will show them you are prepared to tackle distance learning if it should be needed. During your research come up with two to three questions to ask during the digital interview. They will be impressed with your knowledge of their district and show confidence.
Practice Makes Perfect
Practicing for your digital interview can help you feel confident and prepared. Finding a list of teacher interview questions online and thinking over your answers to them can be very helpful. Some common questions include talking about what a math or reading instruction block would look like in your classroom, strengths and weaknesses, classroom management or how you use data to guide your instruction. For a digital interview it would also be helpful to practice logging onto the online platform that will be used in the interview. (Nothing is worse than technology not working right when it is needed!)
The Day of the Digital Interview
Dress for Success
The day has finally arrived! Much like a traditional interview, a prepared candidate will dress for success! Even though the interview is through the screen, resist the temptation to wear pajama pants or your favorite slipper socks. As comfy as they are, it might leave you feeling not as prepared. Dressing professionally will help you feel professional, and confident!
Find A Quiet Spot
A digital interview probably means you are at home. Find a spot that gives you quiet and peace. This spot should be a place that makes you feel relaxed. Make sure your entire face is visible, and there isn’t a window behind you. (Sunlight issues!) Get settled into your spot a bit before the digital interview is to begin. Remind yourself of the questions you will ask them. Remember, YOU GOT THIS.
During the Interview
Because you are interviewing digitally it is important to let your personality shine! This may require a little more energy and effort! Make sure not to use notes! Because you are not actually in the same room, it may be tempting to jot down some key ideas, but don’t! Be engaging, calm and don’t be afraid to show your sense of humor while still keeping it professional.
After the Interview
Send a Thank You Card
This is a tried and true strategy! Think about it. The teachers on the interview committee have spent some of their (much needed) summer break doing digital interviews. Sending a thank you card to the team is a nice gesture and will help you stick out.
You did the best you could, now doing something that relaxes you. Go outside, read a book, pour another cup of coffee. Congratulate yourself on your interview, no matter the outcome. The age of digital interviews is upon us and as daunting as they may seem, YOU did it.
Want to chat with other teachers about your experience? Head on over to our Facebook group, Lucky 2nd Grade Teachers for more digital interview tips & tricks.
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Remember, together we are better!