17 Reading Teacher Interview Questions and Answers

Learn what skills and qualities interviewers are looking for from a reading teacher, what questions you can expect, and how you should go about answering them.

As a reading teacher, you’ll be responsible for teaching students how to read and comprehend texts. You’ll also need to be able to effectively manage a classroom and create lesson plans. If you’re looking for a job as a reading teacher, you’ll need to be able to answer interview questions about your qualifications, teaching style, and experience working with students.

In this guide, we’ll provide you with some sample questions and answers that you can use to prepare for your interview. We’ll also give you some tips on how to answer common interview questions so you can make a great impression on the hiring manager.

Are you certified to teach reading?

Reading teachers must be certified to teach reading. Employers ask this question to make sure you have the necessary qualifications for the job. If you are not yet certified, let them know when you plan to take your certification exam.

Example: “Yes, I am currently a reading specialist. However, I will be taking my teaching certification exam in six months. I’ve been working as a reading specialist for five years now and feel confident that I can successfully transition into a classroom setting.”

What are some of the most effective strategies you use to help students improve their reading skills?

Interviewers may ask this question to learn more about your teaching methods and how you help students develop their reading skills. Use examples from your experience that show you know what strategies are most effective for helping students improve their reading comprehension, vocabulary and other important aspects of reading.

Example: “I find that the best way to help students improve their reading skills is by giving them a lot of practice with different types of reading materials. I assign my students daily reading exercises where they read aloud, read silently and answer questions about what they just read. These exercises help students build up their reading comprehension and vocabulary while also improving their fluency. Another strategy I use is having students read out loud to each other so they can provide constructive feedback on one another’s reading.”

How do you handle students who are resistant to reading or don’t seem to understand the material?

Reading teachers must be able to motivate students who are struggling with reading or comprehension. Employers ask this question to make sure you have strategies for helping these students succeed. In your answer, share a specific strategy that helped one of your previous students overcome their challenges.

Example: “I once had a student who was having trouble understanding the concept of figurative language. I noticed he was very good at writing and creative thinking, so I decided to try an alternative approach. Instead of teaching him about all the different types of figurative language, I asked him to write a poem using metaphors. He ended up loving poetry and became quite good at identifying figurative language in his own work.”

What is your experience with using technology in the classroom?

Technology is an important part of the classroom experience, and many schools are looking for teachers who can integrate technology into their lessons. When answering this question, it’s important to show that you understand how to use technology in a way that benefits students. You may also want to mention any specific programs or apps you’ve used with your students in the past.

Example: “I believe that technology is an essential tool for learning. I have always made sure my students have access to computers and other devices so they can complete assignments and research topics. In my last position, I was able to get all of my students iPads as long as they were responsible with them. This allowed me to incorporate more digital resources into my lessons.”

Provide an example of a time when you had to help a student who was struggling with reading comprehension.

Reading comprehension is an important skill for students to develop. Employers ask this question to learn more about your strategies for helping students understand what they read. In your answer, explain the steps you took to help the student and how it helped them improve their reading comprehension skills.

Example: “When I first started teaching, I had a student who was having trouble understanding what he read. He would often miss questions on his quizzes or tests because he didn’t comprehend what he read in class. To help him, I gave him extra time during our lessons so that he could reread sections of the text if needed. After doing this for several weeks, he began to understand the material better and improved his test scores.”

If you had to create a reading curriculum for your class, what topics would you include?

Interviewers may ask this question to see how you plan lessons and evaluate student progress. When answering, it can be helpful to mention specific skills or concepts that you would teach in each grade level.

Example: “I believe the most important thing for students to learn when reading is comprehension. I would start by teaching them how to read words and understand what they’re reading. Then, I would move on to helping them comprehend more complex texts. In elementary school, I would focus on basic comprehension strategies like predicting and questioning. In middle school, I would help students apply these strategies to longer pieces of literature.”

What would you do if you noticed a student was reading a book that was too difficult for them?

Interviewers want to know how you’ll help students overcome challenges and achieve success. Your answer should show that you’re willing to take the time to assess a student’s reading level, find books at their appropriate level and encourage them to read more often.

Example: “I would first ask the student what they thought of the book. If they said it was too hard for them, I’d look up the book online to see its reading level. Then, I’d check our school library to see if we had any books at that same reading level. If not, I’d order some from our district or other libraries so that all students could access books at their appropriate levels.”

How well do you know the local school district’s reading curriculum?

The interviewer may ask this question to assess your knowledge of the district’s curriculum and how you plan to implement it in your classroom. Use your answer to highlight your understanding of the curriculum, as well as your ability to teach students effectively using the curriculum.

Example: “I am very familiar with the local school district’s reading curriculum because I have used it for several years now. In my last position, I taught all levels of the curriculum, from kindergarten through fifth grade. I also attended a seminar on teaching advanced reading techniques that helped me better understand the curriculum and use it more effectively in my classroom.”

Do you have any experience working with students who have special needs?

Reading teachers often work with students who have special needs, such as dyslexia. The interviewer wants to know if you have experience working with these types of students and how you can help them succeed in reading. If you do not have any experience working with special needs students, explain what steps you would take to learn about their unique challenges and develop a plan for helping them improve their reading skills.

Example: “I worked at my previous school as the only reading teacher, so I had all of the students in my class. However, I did receive training on how to identify students with learning disabilities and strategies for teaching them. For example, I learned that some students may need more time to process information than others, so I always made sure to give everyone extra time to answer questions.”

When is the best time to start teaching reading skills?

Interviewers may ask this question to learn more about your teaching philosophy and how you plan lessons. Your answer can help them understand if you are a good fit for their school, so try to describe the steps you take when planning reading instruction.

Example: “I believe that children should start learning to read as early as possible. I have found that by starting in kindergarten, students can build confidence with reading skills before they even reach first grade. In my last position, I started teaching phonics and sight words in September, which gave me plenty of time to practice new skills and review old ones. This helped students feel prepared for first grade, where they could apply what they learned in kindergarten.”

We want to encourage our students to read outside of school. What is the best way to encourage your students to read?

Reading teachers often have to encourage their students to read outside of school. This question helps the interviewer determine how you would approach this challenge and what strategies you might use to help your students develop a love for reading.

Example: “I think it’s important to make reading fun for kids, so I always try to find books that are interesting and engaging. For example, when I was teaching third grade, we were learning about animals in our science class. One day, I brought in some nonfiction books on different types of animals. The kids loved looking at the pictures and reading about the animals they learned about in class. They also started asking me if they could bring home more books from the library.”

Describe your teaching style.

Interviewers ask this question to learn more about your teaching style and how it aligns with their school’s philosophy. When answering, describe the methods you use in the classroom and explain why they work for you.

Example: “I believe that every student learns differently, so I try to create a learning environment where students can find what works best for them. For example, some students learn better by listening to me speak while others need visuals or hands-on activities. To accommodate all of my students, I give lessons through lectures, group discussions and interactive projects. This allows each student to learn at their own pace.”

What makes you the best candidate for this teaching position?

Employers ask this question to learn more about your qualifications and why you are the best person for the job. Before your interview, make a list of all your relevant skills and experiences that relate to teaching reading. Think about what makes you unique as a candidate and highlight these qualities in your answer.

Example: “I am passionate about helping students develop their literacy skills. I have been working toward my master’s degree in education with an emphasis on reading instruction because I want to be able to teach children how to read at every level. My experience tutoring elementary school students has given me valuable insight into how to help struggling readers improve their comprehension and vocabulary. I believe that my background and training make me the most qualified candidate for this position.”

Which reading strategies do you find most effective when teaching students?

Interviewers may ask this question to learn more about your teaching style and how you implement different strategies in the classroom. When answering, it can be helpful to mention a few of your favorite reading strategies and explain why they’re effective for students.

Example: “I find that using graphic organizers is one of the most effective ways to help my students understand what they read. I usually have them create their own graphic organizer as they read so they can take notes on important information and write down questions they have while reading. This helps them remember key details from the text and think critically about what they’re reading. It also gives them an opportunity to ask me any questions they might have.”

What do you think is the most important skill for students to learn about reading?

This question can help the interviewer get a better idea of your philosophy on reading and how you plan to teach it. Your answer should include what you think is important about reading, but also why that skill is so vital for students’ success in school.

Example: “I believe the most important thing for students to learn about reading is comprehension. Reading is all about understanding what’s being read, and if students don’t understand what they’re reading, then they won’t be able to retain any information or apply it later. I always make sure my students are learning strategies to improve their comprehension when reading.”

How often should students read outside of school?

Reading teachers often encourage students to read outside of school. This question helps the interviewer determine how you would approach this task and whether your answer aligns with their expectations for reading instruction in their district. In your answer, explain what steps you take to ensure students are reading outside of class time.

Example: “I believe that students should be reading at least 30 minutes a day outside of school. I have found that many students don’t have access to books at home or they aren’t able to find time to read during the school day. To help them meet this goal, I provide my students with book lists so they can purchase books on their own. I also give them extra credit if they write reviews of the books they’ve read.”

There is a reading festival coming to the school. How would you prepare your students for this event?

The interviewer may ask you a question like this to see how you plan and organize your lessons. This is an opportunity to show the interviewer that you can create engaging lesson plans for students of all ages and abilities. In your answer, explain what steps you would take to prepare your students for the reading festival.

Example: “I would first find out when the festival was happening so I could make sure my students had plenty of time to practice their reading skills. Then, I would divide them into groups based on their reading levels and give each group a different book to read. After they finished reading the books, I would have them write a summary of the story in their own words. Finally, we would meet up again as a class before the festival to review our summaries.”


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