In our last article we highlighted some common and popular teaching assistant questions and provided you with some sample answers to make the interview process much easier for you.
For these interview questions we’ve asked a few questions but instead of providing you with an exact word for word answer we’ve provided the basis for you to form your answer around, every interview will be different so anyone preparing for their teaching assistant interview can use the same principals highlighted in the answers below.
Example Teaching Assistant interview questions
1. Which skills would you like to develop?
There is nothing weak about knowing you need to increase skills in certain areas. Have a think about professional areas you could take courses in. The Open University or local colleges will have courses relevant to teaching, mention these teaching courses and the interviewer will see how passionate and determined you are to progress your career.
2. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Be careful with this, the interviewer wants to hear how serious and committed you are at contributing to their school. The worse thing you could mention is your intention to use this job as a stepping stone to another teaching job elsewhere.
3. What do you consider to be your greatest strength?
Don’t be shy, this is your chance to tailor your answer to the demands of the job you are applying for. Go back to the research notes you made while you were preparing for the interview and highlight your ideas on how you would tackle some of the most common problems affecting the school.
4. How do you react to criticism?
Nobody enjoys having their faults commented on, but it is important you communicate an ability to reflect on feedback calmly. The purpose of these teaching assistant interview questions and answers is to help you cope with awkward issues and provide you with a basis to focus your individual answer around.
TA interview questions concerning your knowledge of good practice
5. What would be your priorities for the first fortnight in the job here?
Talk about learning staff and pupils’ names quickly and familiarising yourself with school layout and policies on everything from discipline to green issues.
Don’t be afraid to let the interviewer know how eager you to gain as much experience and knowledge from supporting staff at the school.
6. In your opinion, whose responsibility is literacy?
The only answer to this is ‘all of us’. Everyone in the school, whether teaching or support staff, has to work hard to help children develop literacy. This is a popular teaching assistant interview question which could also ask about responsibility for discipline or health and safety issues.
7. Can you explain the necessary skills to maintain order in a class?
You will have acquired techniques from experience and in training. One of the most helpful skills is to know each child’s name so that you can communicate clearly with the class.
8. How can the school support their teaching assistants?
Think about specific examples of where schools can help, such as providing mentors or training days. If you’ve worked as a teaching assistant before then highlight some of the issues that has affected you in the past and give examples of any solutions you can think of.
9. How can you protect yourself from allegations of abuse?
Simple strategies like not being alone with a child when the door is shut, or not carrying out any personal care unless prescribed by the school, are the type of answers required here.
10. If you witness some bullying behaviour while on playground duty, what actions would you take?
Every school should have its detailed bullying policy. You would of course act to stop any bullying and then seek to follow the agreed procedure. The safety and security of the child is of prime importance.
Remember that TA interview questions are prompts for you to show how you will be a key member of the school team.
If you spend some time researching some of the most common teaching assistant interview questions you would have a broad scope of all the different types of questions and answers the interviewer will asking and you will gain in confidence. Good luck.