Familiarizing yourself with a few teaching assistant interview questions can make all the difference between getting the job and not getting the job. A job interview can be one of the most demanding and stressful parts of starting a new job.
Whether it’s a teaching assistant job interview or any type of job interview, you must prepare yourself by practicing and familiarizing yourself with some of the most commonly asked interview questions and prepare mental notes of some of the answers the interviewer will be looking for.
A job interview can be very stressful, and many teaching assistants worry about the outcome of the interview without focusing on the interview itself.
This can lead to hurried answers, incomplete information being conveyed and even insomnia the night before.
Thankfully, it doesn't have to be like that. This article will give some general job interview advice, share some successful tips to help formulate great answers and list some example interview questions for teaching assistants.
General Job Interview Advice
Remember that the interview is your chance to sell yourself. The interviewer will usually have no idea of who you are, or what your skills and experience are. It's quite acceptable to pause after a question, nod thoughtfully and think about your answer before sharing the information.
There are no right or wrong answers. If you don't know the answer to a question, don't be tempted to make something up or give empty ‘fluff' answers. The interviewer will appreciate your honesty, and you may be able to focus on more positive answers later.
Formulating the Best Answer to Questions – the STAR formula
A tried-and-true formula for providing the best answers to interview-style questions is the STAR technique. It's particularly suited to interview questions for teaching assistants because the interviewer will be keen to hear about real-life experiences relating to the job on offer.
Teaching assistant interview questions often involve behavioural types of questions, where they ask you to describe a situation when you encountered a problem. The steps below will help you to deliver the best possible answer.
S – Situation Briefly describe an example where you encountered the situation mentioned in the question. State the place where you worked, when you worked there, the position that you held.
T – Task Teaching assistant job interview questions will focus on determining your suitability for the job. It's important to formulate a concise answer to the T – Task part of the STAR formula. Describe the task that you had to do or the situation that you encountered.
A – Action This should be the focus of your answer. Spend a little extra time formulating a positive answer for this part. Describe the action that you took to resolve the problem or deal with the situation.
R – Result This is the final part of the answer and should be delivered confidently. After you finish the answer, don't be concerned if there is a period of silence. The interviewer or panel will be writing their comments. Don't be nervous and keep talking after the information has been shared.
Example Teaching Assistant Interview Questions
These are some of the most common teaching assistant job interview questions that you will encounter on your job hunt. By reading through these and formulating your answers using the STAR formula outlined above, you will be well on your way to a new job.
Classroom Management Questions
What will you do if a child is disruptive?
How would you respond to a child that doesn't obey you?
What would you do if two students are talking and playing constantly during class?
How do you discipline disobedient students?
How can you make sure that students have understood a new concept?
How could you help a student improve their reading skills?
How can the teaching assistant help the teacher to engage children?
Do you have any skills that you can use in the classroom, for example, music or art?
Do you think teaching should be fun?
Practice STAR Questions
Can you tell us about a time when you dealt with conflict in the workplace
Tell us about a time when you delivered excellent teaching support
Tell us about a situation when you had to use creativity to solve a problem