Primary Teacher interview questions and how to answer them!

21/02/2022 | All

Have you been invited to an interview for the Primary Teacher role that you applied for? Congratulations! This may be your dream role at your dream school, or an opportunity that you have been waiting a long time for. Preparing for an interview can be daunting and often stressful. We have compiled some of the most common primary teacher interview questions and answers for you to help you prepare for the big day!

The most common primary teacher interview questions and answers

Let’s take a look at some of the most common primary teacher interview questions:

  1. Why did you apply for this role at our school?
  2. Tell us about yourself?
  3. What do you know/think about our school’s vision and values?
  4. How strong is your understanding of the National Curriculum across the subjects and year groups?
  5. How would a typical lesson plan look for you?
  6. What behaviour management have you used successfully?

Wondering how on earth you would answer these questions at the interview stage? Fear not! Let’s take a look at each primary teacher interview question and answer in turn and how to successfully answer them.

Why did you apply for this role at our school?

This interview question is your opportunity to explain to your interviewer why this job is the perfect role for you. It is essential that you do your research about the school prior to your interview to establish whether you are a good fit for the school and are able to convey this to your interviewer. Most Primary Schools would be happy for you to arrange a school visit before your interview. Use this as an opportunity to get a good feel of the school and build your interview answer based on this.

Example interview answer:

“When I came to visit the school, I felt really comfortable from the moment I entered. I thought that the classrooms and school environment were vibrant, engaging and certainly somewhere I could see myself working. The students and staff were welcoming and lovely, I would look forward to working alongside them on a daily basis. I also thought that the culture and visions of the school were clear and aligned with my personal values which is something important to me”.

Tell us about yourself?

The next most common primary school interview question is the age old ‘tell us a bit about yourself question’. This is your chance to really sell yourself to your interviewer and give them a real feel of what you are like as a person. However, it can be easy to go off on a tangent. It’s important to, where possible, talk about things that strengthen your appeal as a teacher in the role you are applying for. It’s also important to show them that you have an interesting life outside of school by mentioning any hobbies or exciting experiences you have had.

Example interview answer:

“I am a keen netball player and have played for my local netball team for several years. It’s something I am highly passionate about and would love to introduce to some of the students if I had the opportunity through extracurricular activities. I also love to travel and experience different cultures. I recently went to Thailand and enjoyed experiencing and embracing the different cultures there!”.

What do you know/think about our school’s vision and values?

It’s really important that you do your research on the school’s visions and values before your interview as this primary teacher interview question has become increasingly important for schools over recent years. Find out what their main visions/values are and express your understanding during the interview. Then, tell the interviewer how you think that they align with your personal visions/values and why this would make you a good fit for the role.

Example interview answer:

“I can see that your main vision at the school lies around inspiring all children to learn and grow. This is something I am personally passionate about with all students that I teach so to work towards this vision on a greater level at your school would be an amazing opportunity. Your main school values seem to focus on inclusivity which is something I am extremely invested in and would love to be involved in”.

How strong is your understanding of the National Curriculum across the subjects and year groups?

Your interviewer wants to see clear evidence that you have some awareness of key elements in the curriculum, particularly in core subjects. Prepare for this question by having the basic knowledge of the curriculum across both key stages and give some examples of what you are aware of. A good idea is to use examples of any recent changes to the curriculum.

Example interview answer:

“From studying the latest curriculum updates, I am aware that some of the objectives in Mathematics for Year 4 students have recently changed.” Go on to explain the changes and how you are aware of what will need to be adapted in terms of teaching.

How would a typical lesson plan look for you?

This is a great opportunity for you to show off your teaching style and your organisation/planning skills. If possible, have a ‘typical’ lesson plan constructed to show your interviewer, or if this is not appropriate have a clear plan in your head which you can easily recite.

Example interview answer:

“My lesson plan would always start with a clear lesson goal and objective. It would also include differentiated activities, a structured input with open and closed questions, the deployment of my TA , any required resources and notes on any special requirements for certain focus children for behavioural or academic reasons”.

What behaviour management have you used successfully?

Here you want to emphasise your behaviour management skills to the interviewer. If possible, read the school’s behaviour policy and try to link your responses with that. Let the interviewers know that you have high expectations of behaviour and that you have successful control.

Example interview answer:

“I like to establish early on my expectations of the children. I prioritise building relationships with my students and I do this with lots of positive reinforcement and celebration of good behaviour. I often do this through team points, stickers and other creative methods. However, I make it clear that if school behaviour rules are not followed then sanctions will be used. I predominantly like to keep positive relations as the main way of managing behaviour”.

How can i-teachers help you?

At i-teachers, we pride ourselves on our fantastic interview preparation. We are the UKs highest rated education recruitment consultancy and our team are dedicated to making a positive difference to education through placing high quality candidates. The i-teachers approach is entirely personal – we pride ourselves on building strong relationships with our candidates and schools to ensure the best possible fit. Our dedicated education consultants provide thorough interview preparation advice to all of our candidates going for an interview for one of our teaching roles. Contact us to find out more!