Table of Contents

  1. How to prepare before the interview?
  2. What to expect during the interview?
  3. Common Teacher Interview Questions
  4. Follow-Up Steps After the Interview
  5. Conclusion
  6. Frequently Asked Question

Getting hired as a teacher can be a competitive process. You'll need to stand out among a pool of qualified candidates and prove that you have the skills and passion to educate and inspire students.

Acing the teacher interview is key to landing your dream teaching job. Teacher interviews allow principals and school administrators insight into your experience, teaching style, and personality.

While every teacher interview will be unique, most will involve a standard set of teacher interview questions.

Understanding these common questions and being prepared to answer them thoughtfully is the best way to make a strong impression.

Let's get started!

With the right preparation, you can walk into your teacher interview feeling confident and ready to impress.

How to prepare before the interview?

The key to interview success starts well before you even walk through the door. Follow these tips to make sure you're putting your best foot forward:

Research the School

Learn as much as you can about the school and community you're applying to.

Understand the student population, school values and mission, and recent news or initiatives.

This will allow you to tailor your responses and show you're truly excited about the opportunity.

Review Common Teacher Interview Questions

Practice answering the most common teacher interview questions. We've included the top questions and sample responses later in this guide. Preparing responses ahead of time will help you articulate your thoughts clearly and avoid awkward pauses.

Prepare Your Responses

In addition to practicing answers for common questions, think about key stories or anecdotes you can share. Come equipped with examples that highlight your past teaching success, ability to collaborate, and commitment to students.

Dress Professionally

Make sure you look the part. Dress professionally in formal attire and avoid flashy accessories or styles. You want to look polished and put together.

Arrive Early

Plan to arrive at the interview site at least 10-15 minutes early. This will allow you time to get settled and review your notes before the interview begins. Punctuality is key for teachers!

What to expect during the interview?

The interview is your time to shine! Keep these tips in mind:

Be Confident and Personable

Walk into the interview with your head held high. Greet the interviewers with a smile and firm handshake. Be professional yet personable - you want your passion and personality to shine through.

Provide Specific Examples

Back up claims about your teaching abilities with specific examples. Share stories that highlight your skills and commitment to student success. Provide details and context for greater impact.

Ask Thoughtful Questions

The interview is a two-way street. Come prepared with thoughtful questions that show your interest in the school and students. This is your chance to figure out if the position is a good fit.

Common Teacher Interview Questions

Let's dive into the meat of the teacher interview - the questions! Here are some of the most frequently asked teacher interview questions along with tips on how to respond:

Tell Me About Yourself

This is often the opening question and a chance to share your "elevator pitch." Keep it concise and focused on the highlights of your teaching career. Share details about your background, years in teaching, subjects taught, and educational philosophy.

Sample Response

"I'm a high school English teacher with 5 years of experience teaching grades 9-12. I have a bachelor's degree in Secondary Education from State University.

As an English teacher, my goal is to foster a lifelong love of reading and self-expression in my students. I create dynamic lesson plans and utilize new technologies to make material engaging.

In my last role at Central High School, I led a struggling class of 9th graders to a 20% increase in reading comprehension test scores."

Why Did You Become a Teacher?

This question allows you to share your passion. Explain what got you interested in teaching, your motivations, and your future goals in the field. Focus on your commitment to student development.

Sample Response

"I became a teacher because I want to make a difference in students' lives. As a high school student, I had an English teacher who inspired me through her infectious passion for literature.

She's the reason I fell in love with reading and writing. I want to similarly motivate and empower my own students.

As an educator, my goal is not just to teach content but to enable students to thrive and fulfill their potential."

How Do You Handle Challenging Students?

For this answer, acknowledge that all students have unique needs. Explain your approach to understanding challenging behavior and differentiating instruction accordingly. Share an example if possible.

Sample Response

"I recognize every student is different in terms of motivations, background, and learning abilities.

When working with challenging students, I start by having one-on-one conversations to understand the root causes of the behavior.

I then work collaboratively with administrators, counselors, and parents to create an individualized plan - for example, assigning a peer tutor or allowing flexible due dates.

The key is maintaining high expectations while providing the right support."

How Do You Use Technology in the Classroom?

Technology is integral to modern education. For this question, highlight ways you incorporate technology to boost student engagement and learning. Share specific tools and methods.

Sample Response

"Technology is a vital tool for engaging today's learners. I incorporate tools like Google Classroom to create a paperless classroom and allow for easy collaboration.

I also use interactive quiz apps like Kahoot! to gamify lessons. My students recently completed animated book report videos using iMovie.

Technology enables me to cater to different learning styles and make typically dry subjects come alive."

How Do You Differentiate Instruction?

Explain your approach to differentiation - teaching methods tailored to different learning needs. Share how you assess students, then challenge and support them accordingly. Give examples if possible.

Sample Response

"Differentiation is key to reaching every student. I use pre-assessments and observation to identify where students are at academically.

For advanced learners, I may provide extension activities or ask them to peer tutor. For struggling students, I scaffold instruction and break concepts into smaller chunks.

No matter their level, I incorporate visual, auditory, and tactile elements so all students can engage with material in their own way."

How Do You Handle Classroom Management?

For this question, acknowledge the importance of clear expectations and structure. Share your approach to setting classroom rules, procedures, and consequences. Give an example if you have one.

Sample Response

"I create a structured yet positive classroom environment. On the first day, we collaboratively establish classroom rules and expectations.

I use a system of warnings and consequences if rules are broken, never yelling. Praise and rewards incentivize good behavior.

By getting to know students individually and keeping lines of communication open, I build mutual respect."

What is Your Teaching Philosophy?

Your teaching philosophy summarizes your core beliefs and approaches. Share methods you find effective and values you bring to the classroom. Emphasize student-centered practices.

Sample Response

"My teaching philosophy is that every student has the potential to succeed when given the right support. I create an encouraging environment focused on real-world skills.

My lessons incorporate collaboration, critical thinking, and creativity to engage diverse learners.

While curriculum is important, I believe in educating the whole child - building character and life skills that will help them thrive beyond the classroom."

Why Are You Interested in This School?

Show you have done your research here! Share specific details on why you're excited about the opportunity and how you'll contribute to the school's community and vision.

Sample Response

"I'm very interested in joining the team at Springfield Elementary. Your school values of community involvement and character development align with my own.

I was impressed by the recent school beautification initiative and multi-cultural fair. I'm excited by the opportunity to engage parents and create hands-on learning experiences.

I'm confident my passion for education and creativity with lesson planning would be a great fit."

Do You Have Any Questions for Me?

Always prepare 2-3 thoughtful questions to show your interest in the position. Ask about school culture, professional development opportunities, or challenges the school is facing.

Sample Questions

  • How would you describe the culture at this school?
  • What professional development and collaboration opportunities are available to teachers here?
  • What can you tell me about the student population and their needs?
  • What qualities does the ideal candidate for this position possess?

Read more: Do you have any questions for me?

Follow-Up Steps After the Interview

The interview isn't over yet! Follow up with these steps to follow up after the interview:

Send a Thank You Note

Email thank you notes to everyone who interviewed you within 24 hours. Thank them for their time and reiterate your interest in the position. This is another chance to make an impression.

Reflect on the Experience

Think about the conversations and take notes on what went well. Learn from any stumbles and be prepared to improve for future interviews. With each interview, you'll become more comfortable and confident!


With preparation and practice, you can tackle any teacher interview question with ease. Keep these tips in mind:

  • Research the school thoroughly before the interview
  • Prepare responses and examples ahead of time
  • Emphasize your teaching philosophy and commitment to students
  • Share specific stories and anecdotes when possible
  • Ask thoughtful questions to show your interest

Landing your first teaching job is an exciting milestone! Stay positive throughout the interview process. If you don't get an offer the first time around, learn from the experience and try again. With persistence and the right preparation, you'll be ready to start your teaching career.

Best of luck! You've got this.

Frequently Asked Question

What should you wear to a teacher interview?

Aim for professional business attire - this means a suit or dress pants and blazer for men and a dress or dress pants and blazer for women. Make sure clothes are neatly pressed and avoid loud colors or distracting accessories.

What if you're asked an odd question like "What kind of tree would you be?"

Don't get thrown off by oddball interview questions! The interviewer wants to see how you think on your feet. Answer seriously, highlighting traits relevant to teaching like flexibility, resilience, and nurturing students' growth.

Should you bring copies of your resume to the interview?

Yes, bring several clean copies of your resume printed on professional paper. Offer copies to the interviewers so they have one handy, but assume they already have a copy.

Is it okay to apply for multiple teaching jobs at once?

Absolutely! Until you have signed a contract, it's perfectly acceptable to apply and interview for multiple teaching positions. Attending multiple interviews is a great way to practice your interview skills.

Should you send handwritten thank you notes after the interview?

A handwritten note can make a great impression. However, emails are more common nowadays and allow you to follow up promptly after the interview. Choose whichever medium you are most comfortable with.

Check out Resume for Teacher

Interview Questions