Any advice for my Schools Direct interview?

(7 Posts)
QueenofWhatever Mon 08-Apr-13 16:14:45

Despite being told it was too late, I put in a late application for teacher training after being made redundant a couple of months ago. Primary teaching is something I've been tempted to do for a while but it feels like now is the time to go for it.

I've got an interview this Saturday for Schools Direct (unsalaried) and would be grateful for any advice or pointers. It's five hours with a tour and talk, maths and English tests, presentation to a small group and one-to-one interview.

For my presentation, we need to bring a prop and explain how we would use it in a classroom. I was thinking of taking a map of the world or globe as you could do a project that pulls in lots of different areas - geography, science, history, maths (spheres?). Does that sound like the right sort of thing?

partystress Tue 09-Apr-13 09:03:15

I would be tempted to take a prop that was more 'intriguing' - something that would get the children discussing what it could be for, when it was made, who made it etc, and which could then lead on to learning about some topic. Eg, something used in an old local industry, or as part of a religious ritual, or even some relatively recent, but now obsolete technology. In schools nowadays, the less you (the teacher) talk, the better!

missmapp Tue 09-Apr-13 09:11:11

Yes, an aretefact would be good- something that you could start a sort of ' what do you think this is' discussion, where the children could work in groups to discuss what they notice about the object , then lead to what do we think it is, then lead to talk of history in that era, linked to how the object was used. As party stress says- encouraging discussion amongst the class is good.

QueenofWhatever Tue 09-Apr-13 14:52:21

An artefact, now that's a good idea. I'm now desperately racking my brain as to what I could use.

That's good advice about getting the children discussing it and working in groups. From what I've read, it seems to be good practice to have mini plenaries during lessons to check how everyone is getting on. Is that the sort of thing you think they are looking for?

They also say that for the one-to-one interview, we should prepare by anticipating what questions they might ask. I'm guessing they'll include why do you want to be a teacher, what makes a good teacher etc.? Anything else that's a favourite interview question?

mumandboys123 Tue 09-Apr-13 20:18:55

I am a PGCE student who was recently successful at my first interview although I'm secondary.

I was asked questions on how I would be innovative in my curriculum area; how I would deal with low level disruption; how I would work within the ethos of the school (religious); how I use formative and sumative assessment.

I had prepared responses on these issues but also on safeguarding children, the curriculum generally, role of the form tutor/pastoral 'care' generally, assessment levels, some specific questions related to my subject area (if you intend to specialise, read up on your specialism), literacy and numeracy, SEN, differentiation.

For my PGCE interview, there was a focus on 'why now?' (as I'm the wrong side of 40!) and a very detailed conversation regarding my experience. I was offered a place there and then on the basis that 'you are clearly going into this with your eyes open' so it would be worth thinking about that and how you can demonstrate that - I was careful to avoid saying anything that even hinted at 'the job works for me as a single parent with children and that is up there as motivation for career changing at this point' (even if that's half the truth!) Think about your transferable skills and really put these across. If you put 'interview preparation' or similar into tes there is some good advice on the forums there - I followed the mind-mapping advice and it really worked for me (and I am not good at interviews at all, believe me - rabbit in headlights usually!).

QueenofWhatever Wed 10-Apr-13 13:14:58

mumandboys123 congratulations on getting on the course and your helpful advice. I'm 43 but tbh don't see it as the wrong side of 40. I think being at this stage in my life will make me a better teacher.

My DD is now eight and after having been a single parent with no support, DP lives with us now and works from home. From the logistics POV, this is the first time that retraining has felt like a realistic option. The practicalities felt too overwhelming before now as well as the drop in salary.

The holidays are actually not a great motivator for me so I need to think about how to get that across.

I've spent some time on the TES forums, thanks for the tip off. It's helping me think through what they might ask and what I need to say to help the, see why I would be right for it. This is just the first stage and if I get through, there would be more detailed interviews to come.

MrsSalvoMontalbano Mon 22-Apr-13 09:28:23

Queen am a bit late coming to this thread, so hope your inerview went well. I have been offered a place on School Direct and am a long way past 40 grin. Was thinking of maybe starting ahread for those of us guniea pigs starting in Set 2013?

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