MockQuestions

High School Teacher Interview Questions

To help you prepare for your High School Teacher interview, here are 33 interview questions and answer examples.

High School Teacher was written by and updated on March 30th, 2021. Learn more here.

Question 1 of 33

Tell me about your leadership qualities.

How to Answer

The interviewer would like to know what you consider to be strong leadership qualities. When describing leadership qualities, try to avoid general terms and give some unique ideas.



A great leader is someone who people naturally want to follow. They have exceptional interpersonal skills and the ability to build relationships with nearly any personality type. A respected leader will take ownership for their mistakes and will always lead their team by example. True leaders see the importance in motivating others and recognizing even the smallest achievements. Which of these qualities do you most identify with?



Written by Rachelle Enns on March 30th, 2021

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33 High School Teacher Interview Questions & Answers

  • 1. Tell me about your leadership qualities.

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to know what you consider to be strong leadership qualities. When describing leadership qualities, try to avoid general terms and give some unique ideas.



      A great leader is someone who people naturally want to follow. They have exceptional interpersonal skills and the ability to build relationships with nearly any personality type. A respected leader will take ownership for their mistakes and will always lead their team by example. True leaders see the importance in motivating others and recognizing even the smallest achievements. Which of these qualities do you most identify with?



      Written by Rachelle Enns on March 30th, 2021

      1st Answer Example

      "I have taken many workshops and courses to improve my leadership skills over the years. My leadership qualities are best summed as dedicated, attentive, and motivating. I like to recognize my students' small wins because that motivates them to continue achieving."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on March 30th, 2021

      Community Answer

      "In the past, I have assisted and took leadership in school breakfast clubs. I also have over 500 hours of volunteering at schools where I spent most of the time working with students in small groups to teach a specific expectation, for example, understanding fractions."

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Rachelle Enns

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Rachelle Enns Reviewed the Above Answer

      Volunteer experience is always looked at favorably by interviewers so this is an excellent addition. Very good answer!

  • 2. What is your communication style with the parents of your students?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to know how you would describe your communication style, when it comes to your interactions with the parents of your students. Whatever your communication style may be, be sure to describe it in a concise manner that will resound positively with the interviewer.



      Some ideas of communication styles:



      - articulate

      - chatty

      - conversational

      - emphatic

      - formal

      - honest

      - informal

      - succinct



      Written by Rachelle Enns on March 30th, 2021

      1st Answer Example

      "My communication style with the parents of my students could best be described as informal, and conversational. I want parents to be comfortable coming to me with their concerns and questions."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on March 30th, 2021

      Community Answer

      "I prefer to email first because I am good at writing and I also think it is more convenient for parents especially the ones who work. However, if it is a serious issue I would call them directly. I like to be formal with colleagues and parents to set a professional tone. I am honest with parents in terms of their child, so they can understand what is happening, and we can work together to achieve something positive."

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Rachelle Enns

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Rachelle Enns Reviewed the Above Answer

      Your communication approach with parents, especially depending on the situation, shows great awareness. Good answer!

  • 3. Have you ever received an award or special workplace accolade?

      How to Answer

      Be sure to add any special awards and accolades on your resume! If you do have these listed on your resume, the interviewer is asking for you to elaborate on the information you have provided. Briefly review any award, what the circumstances were surrounding your nomination, and end with discussing what it meant to you.



      Written by Rachelle Enns on March 30th, 2021

      1st Answer Example

      "I received the 'Teacher of the Year' award at my current school, last year. Nominations were by the student body as well as the faculty. When I won the award it was such a boost to my confidence! I know that my work is appreciated and my efforts are noticed. It was really special to me."

      Written by Rachelle Enns on March 30th, 2021

      Community Answer

      "I have received the Business award in Grade 12. Then I had rough university years, however, I managed to graduate and then I post-graduate studies in accounting, which helped me land a good job."

      Written by an Anonymous User

      Rachelle Enns

      Our Professional Interview Coach
      Rachelle Enns Reviewed the Above Answer

      Mentioning your business award is great! Avoid putting a damper on your positive answer by discussing your rough years. It just causes more questions than anything. I have revamped your answer slightly, below.

      "Yes! I was proud to have received the business award in Grade 12 for my efforts in {talk about the project}."

  • 4. Out of curiosity, what type of student were you in high school?

      How to Answer

      This question is designed to break the ice a bit and allow the interviewer to see your personality a little bit better. Briefly discuss they type of student you were in High School. Be sure to keep it light and tie in how your own High School experience has helped you be a better educator.



      Written by Rachelle Enns on March 30th, 2021

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  • 5. What are you reading right now?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to know what you choose to read in your spare time. Do you feed your mind on a regular basis? What kind of literature do you prefer and why? Talk to the interviewer about a book that you are currently reading. If you are not currently reading a book - talk about one that has impacted you the most.



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  • 6. What types of activities keep you busy, outside of work?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to know what keeps you busy outside of the workplace. Having hobbies and interests outside of work is a very important part of maintaining a healthy work/life balance. Talk to the interviewer about the activities that interest you outside of the workplace.



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  • 7. Tell me something about yourself that I wouldn't know from reading your resume.

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to get to know you apart from what is written on your resume. You are certainly not obligated to discuss personal matters such as your kids, or relationship status, for instance. Stick with a couple of fun facts to show the interviewer that you are a real person, too. Your answer should be unique so that you are a memorable candidate!



      Focus on special non-work related skills or hobbies. For example, you might share that you enjoy beat-boxing or making origami swans. Be prepared for the interviewer to stop you and ask you to perform your skill on the spot when its possible! (This will make you unforgettable!)



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  • 8. What motivates you?

      How to Answer

      Typically, employees are motivated by environments where they feel supported and encouraged. The interviewer wants to know how they could motivate you - even on the toughest of days! Be open with the interviewer about the ways you can stay motivated on the job, even when the going gets tough.



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  • 9. How do you handle stress on the job?

      How to Answer

      Are you someone who is able to handle stress on the job? How do you manage the stressful times? Talk to the interviewer about your ability to manage pressure in the workplace.



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  • 10. How do you prepare students for standardized assessments?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to know that you are able to properly prepare your students for standardized testing. Briefly talk about the ways that you help prepare your students for these tests.



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  • 11. What are your salary expectations?

      How to Answer

      The best way to discuss your salary expectations are to use your current earnings as an example. Be open, and honest. Transparency is the best choice when salary based questions arise.



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  • 12. How do you deal with distracting coworkers who stand in the way of your productivity?

      How to Answer

      Even the most well-meaning coworkers can distract you from getting things done at work from time to time. Let's be honest, the funny and entertaining coworkers who like to chat online and send YouTube videos are often the ones who can get in the way of your productivity if you let them. How do you respond? Show off your ability to set professional boundaries, when needed.



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  • 13. Rate your communication skills from 1-10 with proper examples backing your given rating.

      How to Answer

      On a scale of 1-10, how skilled are you in communication? Why did you choose that particular rating for yourself?



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  • 14. Would you say you are a better verbal or written communicator?

      How to Answer

      In which manner do you prefer to communicate - written or verbal? Discuss your preference with the interviewer and support your answer.



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  • 15. Describe an ongoing problem at your current or former employer that you were able to overcome.

      How to Answer

      Every place of employment will have it's challenges. Talk to the interviewer about a specific issue that you were able to overcome in your previous role. Be sure to remain positive. Avoid complaining or saying negative things about your previous employer or co-workers.



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  • 16. When have you had to lead by example?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to know that you are aware of the need to always lead by example.

      'All the time!' As a leader, your actions, decisions, and demeanour are always under some form of scrutiny. The most stressful workplace situations often surround change so it's a great idea to talk about a time when your organization went through a major change. Change can be very challenging for some people. Discuss how you accept change with a positive attitude.

      Perhaps a new software system was being implemented. Maybe your company was being acquired. Perhaps a change occurred in your senior leadership. Talk about how easily your team could have leaned towards negativity by becoming unmotivated, or acting fearful of the change. Highlight that you have genuine excitement surrounding the possibilities that come with change and that this excitement rubs off on your team.

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  • 17. We were initially looking for someone with 5 years' experience in a similar role. Considering you have just 2 years' experience, would you be willing to accept this position at a lower salary?

      How to Answer

      Are you willing to earn your way up if the interviewer does not want to offer you top compensation? Discuss with the interviewer what you would expect for compensation if you were offered this position.



      Written by Rachelle Enns on March 30th, 2021

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  • 18. What interests you most when it comes to teaching at the High School level?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to better understand what is motivating you to teach at the High School level. Give one strong example of why being a High School Teacher is an exciting career path for you. Discuss how this role will help you to feel fulfilled in your teaching career.



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  • 19. Why are you the best teacher for us?

      How to Answer

      Bragging about yourself in an interview can be really tough to do but this is your time to shine! Which characteristics and career accomplishments have made you a stand-out candidate? Perhaps you have received some academic awards or have been given special accolades in your most recent position. There is nobody like you and now you need to express that to the interviewer.



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  • 20. In your opinion, what is the most rewarding part of being a teacher?

      How to Answer

      This is the time to let your passion for teaching really shine through! Talk about the parts of your role as a High School teacher that you love the most.

      Here are some ideas to get you started:

      - Seeing students reach that 'ah-ha' moment when I am explaining a concept
      - The fact that I am shaping others for the future
      - Every day is unique
      - A huge variety in personalities from my students
      - Being a safe place, or listening ear for students who struggle emotionally
      - Helping students socially, as well as academically
      - Seeing my teaching strategies work with struggling students

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  • 21. What is your teaching philosophy?

      How to Answer

      According to the University of Minnesota, a teaching philosophy is a self-reflective statement of your beliefs about teaching and learning. It should also discuss how you put your beliefs into practice by including concrete examples of what you do or anticipate doing in the classroom. Every teacher, you should have a base philosophy that drives and motivates them every day. Talk to the interviewer about your philosophy on teaching. It's best to write this out and memorize it- similar to how a sales person would have an elevator pitch.

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  • 22. You have been hired as the newest member of our teaching team. How would you first introduce yourself to a group of parents, students, and teachers from our school?

      How to Answer

      When an interviewer asks an open ended question like this, it can be difficult to know where to begin...and end! This question haunts many individuals who may accidentally go a little too in depth into their personal lives. It happens. Keep your reply light, and work relevant. Share how you became interested in this career path and what you enjoy about it. This is a great opportunity to describe yourself by discussing the strengths and qualities that you bring.



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  • 23. Tell me about one of your own teachers that made an impact on you.

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to get to know you a bit more personally. Think of a time when you were in High School, or University, and a teacher or professor made an impact on you. Briefly explain the experience to the interviewer.



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  • 24. How often do you send your students with homework? What is your philosophy on homework?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to know your practices surrounding the amount of homework you send your students home with. It's a hot topic between educators, students, and parents! Share your thoughts but try not to pigeon hole yourself into one answer (IE: Avoid saying, 'I NEVER give homework').

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  • 25. How do want your students to remember you?

      How to Answer

      At the end of the school year, or when your students graduate - how do you want them to remember you? As a High School teacher you have an excellent opportunity to be a positive influence on a younger generation. Keep your answer brief, and positive.



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  • 26. Tell me about a time that another teacher has influenced you.

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to see that you are able to be positively influenced by fellow co-workers and professionals. Show that you are open to assistance, and feedback, when needed. Your real life example can be kept simple! Perhaps a coworker helped you to multitask better during finals, when you were feeling overwhelmed. Maybe their teaching style inspired you. Or, perhaps they gave you great advice on how to handle a student with behavioural concerns.



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  • 27. What is the most challenging part of your job, as a teacher?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to know the areas of your job as a High School teacher, that you find to be the most challenging. Everyone has challenges in the workplace, and that is okay! Avoid talking about difficulty surrounding core requirements. Your example could be related to some technology, or perhaps a specific part of curriculum development.



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  • 28. What area of professional development are you currently focused on?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to know that you take professional development very seriously. As a teacher you should be looking for opportunities to improve, on a regular basis. Talk briefly about the areas that you are dedicated to improving at the moment.



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  • 29. What qualities do you believe make an excellent teacher?

      How to Answer

      List for the interviewer some of the qualities that you feel are most important for a High School teacher to possess. Be sure to tie in the fact that you personally possess these qualities!



      Some great qualities could be:



      - Passion

      - Concern for kids

      - Determined and persistent

      - Confident

      - A confidante

      - Flexible

      - Organized

      - Committed to professional development

      - Diligent

      - Collaborative



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  • 30. How do you earn the respect of your students?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to know how you go about earning the respect of your students. As a High School teacher you must be able to command presence in the classroom while also being a mentor-type that your students feel they can easily approach with questions and other education related needs. Discuss a bit about your work personality, teaching style, and how your students respond to you.



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  • 31. How would you handle a student being disruptive in the classroom?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to know more about your style when it comes to corrective discipline in the classroom. As a High School teacher you will come across students who are challenging, or push your limits. That's a given! Show that you can handle the situation professionally and in a way that demands the respect of your students.



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  • 32. Which subject do you most enjoy teaching?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to know which subjects excite you! Whether you love teaching math, or have a penchant for the arts, show the interviewer that you have a true passion for your craft. There is no right or wrong answer here but be sure to avoid speaking poorly of a certain subject, especially if you may be asked to teach that curriculum down the road.



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  • 33. Have you ever taught a class with special needs students, or students with a disability? If so, how did you adjust your teaching style or curriculum?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer would like to know if you have experience teaching students who have special learning needs. Show that you are willing and able to accommodate the needs of your students. Give a specific example, if you can.



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