Wednesday, March 19, 2014

How To Create An Art Teacher Interview Notebook

With spring just around the corner, there are going to be a lot of new graduates. Something that helped me when I was interviewing was my Interview Notebook. There is no wrong or right way to set the up an interview notebook but these are the things I include you can add or subtract as you see fit.

The Teacher Interview Notebook
On the cover I put a picture of me working with students, and other pictures of my students creating art. This grabs the attention of your interview team, people like visuals.

Table of Contents
I list everything that my notebook contains so it's easy for everyone to find what they are looking for. I also use Avery NoteTabs because they are easy to remove if I want to change things around. 
Since you are going to be traveling around to different interviews I recommend that you use protective sleeves for all your pages in your interview notebook.

Table of Contents:
Certification and Praxis
Teaching Philosophy 
Elementary Teaching Experience
Secondary Teaching Experience
Art Shows
Marlboro County Art Show
Personal Artwork
Letters Of Recommendation

Certification and Praxis (for some reason I didn't take a picture of this)
Place a copy of the State Certification and both your Praxis 1 and 2 scores.

If you haven't taught before put both of your student teaching experiences down. Mine were at an elementary school and middle school. I also included when I worked part time as a preschool teacher on my first resume. Any relevant experience can help you get the job. There are many helpful resume building websites online if you need help. I keep mine a page because this interview notebook should answer any questions they might have.

Teaching Philosophy:

I wrote just a page about my teaching philosophy. Why I think art education is important, how I plan to make my art program helpful to the whole school and what my long term goals for my art program would be. When I referenced other educational articles I made sure to include a bibliography right behind it.

Elementary Experience/ Secondary Experience:

This is what your future employers really want to see and many will flip to this while looking through the table of contents. I included lots of pictures. (If you are student teaching have your supervising teacher take pictures of you at work, you can only get these moments once and it helps future employers see how you are in a classroom setting.) I also include Unit Plans, Lesson Plans and anything I did while at the school; bulletin boards I designed,  fundraisers I spearheaded, artwork I put up around the school and interaction between the students and I.

 (Bulletin Board)
(Printmaking Lesson for the PTO's Auction)

Make sure you make it clear that you will be an helpful part of the school environment.

Art Shows and Marlboro County Art Show

 These were two separate sections but the first was art shows I put together for the school and the second was an Art Show that the county put on that my students were involved in.
Putting on an art show is hard work, especially when you are student teaching but if you have the opportunity to do so, I say go for it! It sets you apart from your competition. If you don't have time to put together an art show look for opportunities you can display your student's artwork in your community. Principals love to see their student's work outside the school.

Have at least six different pieces of your own work to show employers, I like to show diverse ones. Ceramics, Paintings, Drawing etc. 

Awards and Professional Organizations:
Deans List, Academic Societies, Sororities, Fraternities, Any Educational Groups that you are a member of.... Show employers that you are well rounded and excel in your field.

Letters of Recommendations:
Have at least three; a college professor, supervising teachers, educational colleagues, principals etc.
Phew. That post was a long one. But I highly recommend bringing a Interview Notebook with you. It will speak volumes about you without you having to talk your head off. It will also create talking points for you to discuss in your interview.
Happy Interviewing and Good Luck!

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