Fail to prepare, prepare to fail.

Being a teacher is challenging but fulfilling at the same time. It’s a profession that demands a wide range of skills and knowledge. Whether you're an experienced educator or a novice in the field, the interview process can be a nerve-wracking experience. Don’t worry, we have compiled a list of common teacher interview questions that you may encounter.

Practising your answers to these key interview questions for teachers will stand you in good stead come interview time.

1. why do you want to be a teacher here?

It’s an oldie but a goodie. This key interview question gives candidates the chance to prove they’ve done their research in the lead-up to the interview.

  • You should have read about the school’s or early learning centre’s goals and values on its own website, and be able to talk about why the way they work not only appeals to you but is aligned with your own aspirations.

Don’t stop there though – we live in a world of online information, so visit the school’s or early learning centre’s social pages and make Google your friend. Any reviews, publications, forums or videos you find can give you a sense of the organisation’s identity and the day-to-day life there – this will all help you flesh out your responses.  

2. can you tell me about a successful behaviour management strategy you have used in the past?

This is a common interview question for teachers, as employers are interested in hearing about a candidate's adaptability throughout their career. Which tactics worked? Which ones didn’t, and why?

  • Articulate your key learnings from each of your experiences.

As a teacher, no doubt you’ve faced a huge variety of students and children, all with different interests and needs, so it’s crucial your answer can demonstrate your ability to adapt your curriculum, programming and strategies to suit them.

If you can take it a step further and demonstrate how you’ve linked learning to the community in which students and children live, as well as current trends and technologies, you’ll be ahead of the pack.

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3. how do you strive to inspire students and children?

Most importantly, employers want to hear how teachers are working to inspire their students and children each and every day.

It’s your job to prepare a whole range of individuals from varying age groups for the big wide world after they leave your care, and many of them will be tackling jobs that don’t even exist yet. Preparing students for a world that does not exist yet is what makes teaching such an exciting career.

4. if we decided not to appoint you, what would we be missing out on?

When answering teacher interview questions like this one, it's important to showcase your abilities and strengths. Here’s your chance to really make them want you on the team. Work your personal branding to differentiate yourself from the sea of candidates.

  • Tell and show your potential employer what you’re really about, what makes you tick and what the school or centre will be gaining should they decide to offer you the job.
  • Think about what you’ll be bringing to the students’ and children’s lives, as well as what you’ll be adding to the community and the staff as a whole. Employers will often choose to conclude the interview with a question such as this, so use the opportunity wisely and leave them with a positive impression.

Handle this well, and you’ll be getting that call in no time.

more common teacher interview questions to have on your radar.

Early years

Q. What is your understanding of the curriculum framework and how do you implement it on a daily basis?

A. The key to answering this well is familiarity with the framework and putting it into practice – whether you have led the educational programs or been part of using them.


Q. The curriculum is designed to help all students to become successful learners, confident and creative individuals, and active and informed citizens. How do you implement the curriculum in each of your classes?

A. Think of examples of your use of the curriculum which address all three parts of this question – what you’ve done to help students learn to learn, to improve their confidence and creativity, and encourage informed civic participation.

Both early years and schools

Check the criteria for the job to think about your answers for these.

They are quite common interview questions, not only for teachers, but also for a lot of roles in other industries. The interviewer wants to know what you'll bring to the team and how you will develop the role. 

  • What have been your greatest achievements recently?
  • What motivates you to teach?
  • What new skills or capabilities have you developed recently?
  • How do you work under pressure?
  • What would you like to be doing five years from now?
  • What specific skills acquired or used in previous jobs relate to this position?

Hope these common teacher interview questions and answers help you succeed at your interview. If you want to learn more about interview tips, you can check our article to learn about common behavioural interview questions.

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