elementary teacher interview questions shared by candidates
How do you create classroom culture? This is the type of question in which the administration is trying to ascertain that yu can handle a classroom of up to 34 Oakland children. The are trying to find out how you handle classroom expectations and protocols. This is a difficult thing to answer because even though you may say all the right things, the administration knows what you can really expect and does not willfully inform you of the realities a prep teacher will face. The questions keep coming about 'culturally appropriate' teaching and lowering your expectations, while at the same time they are trying to sell you and taking the job because they are desperate and there are not too many competent prospects.
The overall experience of the interview was very positive. The hopes are high and the expectations go through the roof of what you want to establish and create. Sadly, there is very little comradery amongst the fellow teachers and no one is trying to give you a 'heads-up' about what to expect during the school year from both the students and the administration. In the interview, a rosy picture is presented and all the bases seem to be covered, so it feels like all is well. After about 2 weeks of teaching the reality of the chaos of OUSD is revealed and everyone just hunkers down and goes into survival mode. The teachers divide into alliances vs. the administration and as a prep teacher, you fit into no group. It is very lonely and dangerous.
I start by creating a class rules that are based on mutual respect. I also have lesson plans where students learn about different cultures and if there is someone of a different culture in the class I may have them show us something about their culture for example an Arabic student writing the Arabic alphabet.
My first step is to create class rules based on respect. This means that I'll create a class that welcomes diversity by having lessons and activities that teach about different cultures.
I do not recall specific questions from that interview but at Encinitas I sat before a panel of 12 people all with lots of questions that are fairly standard and a candidate would be wise to bone up on. College professors are a good resource for these type questions and now online too there are sources I am sure.