20 Teach First Interview Questions and Answers

Prepare for the types of questions you are likely to be asked when interviewing for a position at Teach First.

When it comes to interviews, preparation is key. And when you’re interviewing for a role at Teach First, it’s important to be aware of the specific questions that you might be asked.

While each interview will be unique, there are some questions that are more likely to be asked than others. In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the most common questions asked in a Teach First interview, and how you can answer them.

So, whether you’re a recent graduate or an experienced teacher, read on for some top tips on how to ace your Teach First interview.

Teach First Interview Process

The interview process at Teach First is quite challenging, particularly the practice lesson. However, the recruiters are friendly and overall the experience is positive. The hiring process can take some time, but it is worth it in the end.

1. What is your teaching philosophy?

This question is an opportunity to show the interviewer your teaching style and how you would apply it in a Teach First classroom. Your answer should include specific examples of how you implement your philosophy into your lesson plans, which can help the interviewer understand what kind of teacher you are.

Example: “My teaching philosophy is that every student deserves to feel safe and supported while they learn. I believe that students who feel comfortable in their learning environment will be more likely to take risks and try new things. In my last role, I had a student who was very shy and quiet. I made sure to give her positive feedback when she did something right and worked with her parents to create a plan for practicing public speaking at home so she could build confidence.”

2. When was the last time you were in a classroom, as a student or teacher?

This question is a great way to learn more about your interviewers and their teaching style. It also allows you to show off your knowledge of the Teach First program by describing what you would do in that classroom.

Example: “I was in a high school math class last week, as I am currently taking an online course for my degree. The teacher was very engaging, asking us questions and making sure we understood the material before moving on. He made it clear that he wanted us to succeed and gave us plenty of time to work through problems ourselves. If I were to teach this class, I would continue with these methods.”

3. Why do you want to become a teacher?

This question is a great way to show your passion for teaching and the impact you want to have on students. When answering this question, it can be helpful to talk about a specific moment in your life that made you decide to become a teacher.

Example: “I’ve always wanted to help others, especially children who are struggling in school. I remember one time when I was working as a camp counselor at a summer camp for kids with special needs. One of my campers had autism and would often get upset because he didn’t understand what we were doing during activities. During lunch one day, I sat down with him and explained everything we did throughout the day so he could better understand. He seemed much more comfortable after that and even started participating in some of our activities.”

4. How would you approach a child who struggles with reading and writing?

This question can help interviewers understand your teaching style and how you would handle a specific situation. Use examples from your experience to explain the steps you take when working with students who need extra support in reading or writing.

Example: “I have worked with many students who struggle with reading and writing, so I know that it’s important to provide them with individualized attention and encouragement. When I notice a student is having trouble with reading or writing, I make sure to give them more time during lessons to practice these skills. I also use technology tools like online dictionaries and word processors to help students learn new vocabulary and write assignments.”

5. What motivates you to be a great teacher?

This question can help the interviewer understand your passion for teaching and how you plan to make a difference in students’ lives. When answering this question, it can be helpful to share an example of a time when you motivated someone or helped them learn something new.

Example: “I am passionate about education because I believe that every child deserves access to quality learning opportunities. In my last role, I had a student who was struggling with math concepts. Instead of just giving him extra practice sheets, I decided to create a game where he could apply his math skills to solve problems. He loved the game so much that he asked if he could play it at home. By creating fun ways to learn, I was able to motivate him to work harder and improve his grades.”

6. Describe a time when you had a low performing employee and how you handled it.

An interviewer may ask this question to assess your leadership skills and how you motivate employees. When answering, it can be helpful to mention a specific example of when you helped an employee improve their performance or behavior.

Example: “In my first teaching position, I had one student who was constantly disrupting the class by talking out of turn. At first, I tried to ignore his behavior, but after several warnings he still didn’t stop. So, I pulled him aside during recess and explained that if he continued to disrupt the class, he would have to stay in at lunchtime. He promised to behave, and for the rest of the day he behaved well. After that, I learned that sometimes students just need someone to talk to them about their behavior.”

7. Tell me about a project that you worked on that did not go well, what went wrong?

This question is a great way to show your problem-solving skills and how you learn from mistakes. When answering this question, it can be helpful to focus on the steps you took to improve or fix the situation.

Example: “In my first year of teaching, I had a student who was struggling with reading. I tried several different methods to help them but nothing seemed to work. Eventually, I realized that they were dyslexic. Once I figured out what was going on, I worked with their parents to get them into an after-school program where they could receive one-on-one tutoring. They ended up passing the state exam.”

8. Do you have any experience working with special needs children?

This question is often asked to determine your experience working with students who have learning disabilities or other special needs. It’s important for Teach First teachers to be able to work with all types of students, so it’s a good idea to highlight any training you’ve had in this area and how you can use that knowledge to help the student succeed.

Example: “I worked as an after-school tutor for two years at a local elementary school where I helped children with learning disabilities learn math and reading skills. I also volunteered at my church to teach Sunday school classes to children with autism. These experiences taught me how to adapt my teaching style to meet the unique needs of each child.”

9. Have you ever given feedback to someone that they did not agree with, how did you handle it?

This question can help interviewers understand how you handle conflict and disagreements. It is important to be honest in your answer, as it can show that you are willing to take responsibility for your actions.

Example: “I have given feedback to a student before who did not agree with my assessment of their work. I explained why I thought they had performed poorly on the assignment and asked them if there was anything else I could do to help them improve. They were able to explain what they felt went well and what they would like to do differently next time. We then discussed strategies they could use to improve their performance.”

10. What are some of your biggest strengths and weaknesses?

This question is a common one in interviews, and it’s important to be honest about your strengths and weaknesses. When answering this question, think of two or three strengths you have that are relevant to the role and then explain how they help you succeed. Then, think of a weakness you have and explain what steps you’ve taken to improve on it.

Example: “My biggest strength is my ability to remain calm under pressure. I find that when students get excited or upset, I can use my calming demeanor to diffuse the situation. My greatest weakness is that sometimes I am too laid-back with my expectations for students. In my previous position, I took some time management courses to learn more effective ways to manage my classroom. Now, I set clear expectations at the beginning of each unit and give regular feedback.”

11. What does personalization mean to you?

Teach First is a program that focuses on personalizing the learning experience for students. The interviewer wants to know how you would implement this into your teaching style and ensure all students are receiving an education that meets their needs.

Example: “Personalization means giving each student what they need, when they need it. I believe in creating a classroom environment where every student feels safe and comfortable asking questions or expressing themselves. This allows me to get to know my students better and understand their unique learning styles and preferences. It also helps me create lesson plans that cater to these individual needs.”

12. What is your plan for maintaining good relationships with students, parents and colleagues?

This question can help interviewers understand how you plan to work with others in the school community. Showcase your interpersonal skills and ability to collaborate by providing examples of how you’ve worked well with a team in the past.

Example: “I believe that maintaining good relationships is one of the most important parts of being an effective teacher. I always make sure to communicate clearly with parents, students and my colleagues so everyone understands what’s expected of them. In my last position, I had a student who was struggling in class. I met with their parents to explain why they were having trouble and together we came up with a plan for extra support.”

13. What are three things you hope to achieve during your first year at Teach First?

This question is an opportunity to show your enthusiasm for Teach First and the impact you hope to make in your first year. Your answer should include specific goals that demonstrate your commitment to helping students succeed.

Example: “I want to help my students develop a love of learning, which I believe begins with developing their self-confidence. I also want to ensure they have access to technology so they can learn more efficiently and effectively. Finally, I would like to see them achieve higher grades than ever before.”

14. How would you describe yourself in one word?

This question is a great way to learn more about the candidate’s personality and values. It also helps you determine if they are a good fit for Teach First, as it asks them to describe themselves in one word.

Example: “I would describe myself as determined. I am passionate about helping students succeed and believe that everyone has the ability to do so. I will work hard to ensure my students feel supported and encouraged throughout their time with me.”

15. How would you deal with a disruptive student?

This question is a good way to assess your conflict resolution skills and how you would handle challenging situations. When answering this question, it can be helpful to provide an example of a time when you had to deal with a disruptive student and the steps you took to resolve the situation.

Example: “In my last role as a teacher’s assistant, I worked with a student who was very disruptive in class. The first step I took was to speak privately with the student to find out what was causing their behavior. After speaking with them, I learned that they were having trouble at home and felt overwhelmed by school. We came up with a plan for me to check in on them throughout the day to make sure they were doing okay.”

16. If we hired you today, what would you do over the next six months to ensure your success?

This question is a great way to assess your goals and ambitions. It also allows the interviewer to see how you plan for success in your career. When answering this question, be sure to include specific details about what you would do and when you would do it.

Example: “I would start by learning as much as I can about Teach First’s mission and values. Then, I would begin researching my school district and familiarizing myself with its resources. Next, I would take part in training sessions and workshops to learn more about effective teaching methods and classroom management techniques. Finally, I would meet with my mentor teacher to discuss their experiences and ask any questions I have.”

17. Do you think you can make a difference in the lives of children? Explain why.

This question is designed to assess your passion for teaching and the impact you want to have on students. Your answer should show that you are committed to helping children succeed in school and beyond.

Example: “I think every child deserves a quality education, regardless of their background or circumstances. I believe Teach First can help me make a difference in the lives of children by giving them the tools they need to succeed in life. I am passionate about working with disadvantaged youth because I know how important it is to give them the support they need to overcome challenges and achieve success.”

18. I’m sure you’ve heard that teachers don’t get paid very much. Why would you still want to work here?

This question is a great way to show your passion for the Teach First mission. You can talk about how you want to make a difference in students’ lives and help them achieve their goals.

Example: “I know that teachers don’t get paid very much, but I would still do this job because of my passion for education. I believe that every child deserves an equal opportunity to succeed, and I’m committed to helping those who need it most. I think Teach First is a great organization because we’re able to give these kids the support they need to reach their full potential.”

19. Can you tell us a bit more about your background and expertise?

This question is a great way to learn more about your candidate’s qualifications and experience. It can also help you determine if they are a good fit for Teach First, as the organization looks for candidates who have a passion for education and social justice.

Example: “I graduated from University of California with a degree in English literature. I then went on to get my master’s degree in teaching from Harvard University. Throughout my studies, I was very passionate about helping students succeed and find their passions. This led me to become an educator where I could inspire others to do the same.”

20. What do you know about our organization?

This question is a great way to test your research skills and knowledge of Teach First. It’s important that you know as much about the organization as possible before attending an interview, so make sure you read through their website thoroughly and check out any other information they provide.

Example: “I’ve done quite a bit of research on Teach First, including reading up on the history of the organization and looking at some of the projects it has been involved in. I’m very interested in working for this company because of its commitment to social justice and equality, which are both values I share.”


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