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5 Assistant Teacher Interview Questions and Answers

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Q:

Do you believe it is essential for children to find school fun and enjoyable? Explain your answer. 

A:

One of the key goals of an assistant teacher is to ensure that all children stay engaged in the classroom. Asking the candidate this question allows you to explore their ability to think critically about how to achieve this goal. It also offers insight into the applicant's ability to present an informed opinion on the role that fun can play in an educational setting, which will give you an idea of their teaching philosophy. What to look for in an answer:

  • Educational beliefs and philosophy that match your school's
  • Ability to use and demonstrate critical thinking skills
  • Ability to articulate an educational position
Example:

"It's not a requirement for school to be entertaining. However, making learning fun can help children feel excited about coming to school. It can also keep their attention on class material longer."

Q:

How would you handle a situation where the classroom teacher does something you strongly disagree with?

A:

As an assistant teacher, this applicant will have multiple interactions with a variety of individuals. These interactions mean that conflict can happen from time to time. With this question, you can see if the candidate has strategies to deal with conflict with an immediate supervisor while expressing personal concerns. It will also give an insight into the person's interpersonal and communication skills and their understanding of a hierarchy. What to look for in an answer:

  • Evidence of understanding the roles in a hierarchy
  • Ability to utilize interpersonal skills
  • Use and understanding of communication skills
Example:

"It is the teacher's classroom, and they have total authority. However, I would set up a time to express my concerns respectfully and clearly outside of class time."

Q:

How would you handle a small group of children who continuously disrupt the class by laughing and talking?

A:

As an assistant teacher, the candidate will be called upon to discipline children or deal with classroom behavioral issues frequently. This question will provide insight into their classroom-management style. It also shows whether the candidate is capable of handling a difficult student situation without the aid of the classroom teacher or principal. Critical thinking skills will also be demonstrated in this answer. What to look for:

  • Evidence of resourcefulness and critical thinking skills
  • Skilled communication ability with the students
  • Ability to handle conflict
Example:

"I would follow the school's policies for disciplinary action, which include separating the children. It would stop the disruption while allowing students to learn."

Q:

Can you describe a time when you successfully convinced an unwilling student to complete an assignment?

A:

An assistant teacher must know how to motivate and communicate with a child who does not want to complete particular assignments. This question will provide insight into the interviewee's strategies for dealing with students who refuse to cooperate or don't appear to care. It also allows you to see how the candidate deals with the everyday stress of being an assistant teacher. This question should also reveal the applicant's conflict-resolution skills. What to look for:

  • Effective interpersonal skills with students
  • Ability to encourage and motivate a disinterested child
  • Ability to utilize conflict resolution skills
Example:

"The student was refusing to complete the work, so I sat down next to her and told her we would do it together."

Q:

Can you describe the role that an assistant teacher has in the classroom?

A:

An assistant teacher should understand his or her unique role in the classroom. This question tells you if the applicant understands the expectations of the position. It also ensures that the applicant knows the responsibilities associated with the role. The focus of this answer should be on how the teaching assistant supports the teacher in the classroom by grading, supervising, etc. What to look for:

  • Applicant's ability to help the teacher
  • Understanding of expectations
  • Positive view of the importance of teaching assistants
Example:

"The role of an assistant teacher is to complete tasks like grading and supervising so that the classroom teacher can focus on instruction."

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