It’s supposed to be the peak of teaching interviews but due to the coronavirus, many schools have decided to use virtual interviews to assess candidates. This means that you might not have to conduct a short lesson to a group of children, instead you may have to present it to a panel. I’ve had one interview virtually where I had to do a 10 minute reading from Goodnight Mister Tom and weave in questions and thoughts to keep the ‘children’ engaged, and present and an assembly to the panel. It was quite challenging as they didn’t respond but I learnt a lot from the process I thought I’d share my advice with you.
Find out what software the interview will be conducted on
Is it Zoom? Google Hangouts? Skype? Find out what software you will be using before your interview day and test that it works with a friend. The last thing you want is to not know how to unmute your microphone or audio during your interview.
Have a mock interview using the software
Not only will this help you get more comfortable using the software, but you’ll also be able to see how ready you are for the real thing. Find a friend and set aside some time to do a mock interview. It was really helpful for me to do this with one of my Primary Education course mates as we both knew the kinds of things to say and could help each other discuss our answers.
Dress for the occasion
Dress up like you would for a normal interview. You might be able to get away with wearing leggings but, you never know, they could ask you to stand up! Make sure your clothes look presentable and you’ve checked that they look good on camera.
Check your background
Is it presentable? Is it tidy? Make sure your background isn’t overpowering. It’s okay to show your personality as the interview will be conducted from your own home so, of course there will be aspects of your personality shown, but make sure it is appropriate.
Limit background noise
If you’re living with other people, inform them what time your interview is at so they are aware. Try and conduct the interview in the quietest room such as your bedroom as this is somewhere that only you need access to (as oppose to the kitchen where everyone needs access to it). If you’re expecting any parcels to arrive, check what time they’re due to ensure it won’t clash with the interview.
Prepare for the interview like you normally would
Prepare some answers to teaching interview questions and ensure you’re ready to explain why you’re the best candidate for the role. Don’t panic because it will all be okay! Take some deep breaths and just be yourself. Ensure you have prepared anything they’ve asked you to prepare such as a lesson and if you made a powerpoint tell them this and send it to them after your interview.
Try to make eye contact
This one is slightly harder as to ‘make eye contact’ on a virtual interview you need to look down the camera lense. I tried to do this as much as possible but it’s hard as you can’t see their facial reactions to see if you’re doing the right thing. Nevertheless, it is important that you don’t just look at their face as they won’t know you’re looking at them. This is something you might want to practise prior to the interview and ask your friend how it makes you appear.
I hope this post helped you feel a little bit calmer. It will be okay and remember, you could always pin some answers behind the camera so that you don’t forget any key points! Follow my teaching Instagram to stay updated on my teaching journey @bizzywithizzy98 !