Your Career, Your Choices

A weekly column for job-seekers By LIAM HORAN, Sli Nua Careers

Questions to put teacher on the spot

With all the movement in the primary school teaching sector at the moment, it might be an opportune time to talk about typical questions that primary school teachers may be asked in a job interview. Some of these are common to other sectors too, so, even if you’re not a primary school teacher, you might find something of value to you here.

We enter our usual ‘health warning’ – when preparing for interview, think more about the answers than the questions. Prepare to give answers that help to meet the employer’s needs in the successful candidate.

You can never anticipate the questions in full – there will always be a few surprises – but you can second guess the employer’s needs.

Some typical questions primary school teachers are asked:


Tell us a little bit about yourself?

Can you please talk us through your CV?

Why inspired you to become a teacher?

What has attracted you to this school?


Do you carry out short-term and long-term planning? What approach do you deploy?

Please outline an example of a lesson you planned and taught that you were very happy with?

Our classes are all multi-grade, how would you ensure each child is learning at an appropriate pace?


ICT is a growing area in this school – how would you propose to use ICT to help the children to learn?


What behaviour management approaches and systems do you deploy in the classroom?


What type of experience of working with Special Needs Assistants do you have?

What is your understanding of the role of the SNA and the role of the teacher, and how those roles might co-exist effectively?

We have two support teachers in this school, how would you work with them to improve the learning of the special needs children within your class?


Do you have an interest in some area that you would wish to pursue as an extra-curricular activity with the children in the school?

What personal qualities will you bring into our staffroom?


How do you think you would deal with conflict with a staff member or a parent?

How would you involve parents in your classroom and with their children?

Why should we take you on in this role?

Do you have any questions you would like to put us?

Is there anything in the interview that we didn’t cover that you’d like to raise now?

Give yourself the career edge by attending our Free Online CV Workshop every Monday evening (6-7 ). Do this from the comfort of your own home – all you need is a headset and access to the internet. More: cvworkshop


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